Sunday, 2nd July, 2023

St Paul's looked great in the sunshine!

We attended Mattins at St Paul’s Cathedral at 10:00am. We were not able to sit in the Quire but, as we had arrived early, we were in the front row of the Nave. The choir sang the Venite to plainsong. The Festival Te Deum in E by Benjamin Britten and his Jubilate in C were also sung. The responses were set by Leighton. Both Britten pieces are among my favourites and it was a great pleasure to hear them sung so beautifully. The organ voluntary was “Villanella” from “Miniature Suite” by John Ireland.

We stayed for the 11:15am Choral Eucharist. The setting was "Missa Brevis: The Road to Emmaeus" and the anthem was “Ave Verum” by Poulenc. The choir was in the Nave for this service which was good. As for the earlier service, the standard of the music was wonderful. The organ voluntary was “St Bride, Assisted by Angels” by Judith Bingham.

After the service, Satoshi went to meet a colleague from his school. I had a roast lunch at a local pub and then sat in the sun in the garden of Christ Church Greyfriars. Only the tower and south wall of this Christopher Wren church remain as the building was gutted by bombs in 1940.

Christ Church Greyfriars, looking west

A Daylily

Another Daylily

I then went back to St Paul’s for 3:00pm Evensong. The responses were again those by Leighton, the canticles were “The Gloucester Service” by Herbert Howells, and the anthem was “Justus it palma florebit” by Colin Mawby. The choral music of Herbert Howells often includes very long phrases. The sound of his “Gloucester Service” echoing around the vast expanse of the cathedral was indescribably beautiful!

This was followed at 4:30pm by an organ recital by Christoph Bornheimer, an organist from Germany. He played:
        Bach: Toccata and Fugue in E major BWV 566,
        Max Reger: Benedictus from Twelve Pieces for Organ Op.59,
        Mendelssohn: The Hebrides Op.26, transcribed by Bornheimer

There were several hundred people present and the playing was excellent. As you may remember, Mendelssohn's "The Hebrides" is better known as "Fingal's Cave". It was great to hear it after visiting the cave so recently!

The Moveable Console on which the organist played his recital, making it possible to see him in action

We returned "home" for a microwave dinner and then started sorting out all our "stuff". Quite a bit gets accumulated over three months and we can't take most of it home. Expensively, another visit to a Post Office is imminent!

Two visitors to our accommodation

< Back   Forward >

Back to Calendar