Purcell Prelude to Michael Hersch

Posted on April 24th, 2012 by

Purcell  Prelude to Michael Hersch

1st January 2013: Purcell has been on my mind in the past few days. I live a few steps from London’s ‘Square Mile’, and over the years have loved walking through the hidden back alleys which are the imprint of the pre-1666 street plan. One of these follows the line of the the back garden of St Michael’s Cornhill, Wren’s biggest church, where Henry Purcell and John Blow gave a joint concert in 1684. This is a church which was very important to me as a young musician. The virtuoso organist and scholar, Jonathan Rennert, gave me many opportunities to play there-indeed, as a schoolboy, I gave my first (serious) quartet concert there-very serious, the programme was Mozart K 421 and Beethoven Op 95… . This Purcell prelude crossed my desk, in a library, when I was a first year at the RAM, and I always remembered it, but did not study it till last year. It then became very important to me, a tiny jewel-and one of the few pieces which I am prepared to play as an encore after performing the Bach cycle. Here it is with ‘5 Fragments’ by Michael Hersch, recorded in a concert in Baltimore’

Purcell-G minor Prelude* & Michael Hersch-5 Fragments+ (2004)

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Old Episcopalean Church, Baltimore. 4th April 2012 (Concert performance)

Michael Hersch

Peter Sheppard Skaerved – Violin – Stradivari ‘1698’, Bows – Antonino Airenti*2011, Stephen Bristow+2010

Henry Purcell by John Closterman

With filmmaker Richard Anderson. Old St Paul’s Church, Baltimore. 2012