The Offertoires sur les grands jeux is an extract from the messe des couvents, a collection of short organ works to accompany the formal service of communion. This is Couperin’s less solemn and more intimate setting. The ‘Convent Mass’ is relatively more concise and easy to perform. It is intended for a modest instrument with two manuals although played here on a larger instrument. In all these pieces the ease of modulation, the ornamentation, the imitative writing, canons, fugues and dissonant effects reveal great mastery.
Couperin was born into one of the best known musical families of Europe. His father Charles was organist at Church Saint-Gervais in Paris, a position previously occupied by Charles’ brother Louis Couperin, a highly regarded keyboard virtuoso and composer whose career was cut short by an early death.
If you would like to watch the video tutorial right now – here it is:
About Jonathan Kingston’s Musical Background
Jonathan studied the organ with Professor Ian Tracey and Ian Wells of Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral, home to one of the largest pipe organs in the world. He was appointed Organ Scholar, and subsequently Sub-Organist to Bradford Cathedral before securing positions as Assistant Director and Director of Music at two leading independent schools. He is currently Associate Director of Music at the Ordinariate Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, Piccadilly.
Jonathan’s Work With Regent Classic
I am pleased to have Jonathan working with us – he covers several areas from sales, demonstrations, voicing of instruments and performing. He would be very pleased to hear from any churches or individuals requiring an engaging and lively recitalist. If you would like to connect with Jonathan directly, please feel free to follow him on Twitter (@jonkingston) or by email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Custom built Digital Organ Being Played
Jonathan plays this piece on our private client instrument. This has 84 speaking stops. It is a 3 manual instrument but with a floating solo division. It is based on the very successful physical modelling ‘Physis’ sound technology used in all standard Viscount instruments. This particular instrument has a real oak console with Rosewood draw stops and Rosewood and Walnut keyboards. It has a internal library of over 500 alternative voice samples allowing the user to create totally individual voice pallets from classic English through Baroque and Romantic. For more information have a look at its specifications here.