Publisher: Novello & Co
Concerto for Organ & Orchestra (1954),
Soloist(s) and Orchestra
This Concerto is in three movements, and is written for three trumpets, timpani and strings. The trumpet parts are in the high register, in the tradition of Bach and Handel.
The first movement (Vivace) is based on two themes – the first played by strings in octaves at the start of the movement; the second, later on in the movement, is played by the organ, interrupted angrily by the orchestra.
In the second movement (Lento) the organ is accompanied only by muted strings. The form is very simple (Ternary, in fact) and the movement could best be described as a meditation.
The last movement (Allegretto) is a fugue, the subject of which is a rhythmical variation of the first movement. This leads to a climax when the violins and violas play the fugue subject and organ and trumpets play the theme of the first movement in its original form. A short and loud coda brings the work to an end.
© Sir Malcolm Arnold
Royal Aarhus Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra