The West Virginia University College of Creative Arts will honor world-renowned organist Clyde English (1915-2010), who was professor of music and head of the organ program at WVU from 1945 to 1980, with a special organ concert, Thursday, Oct. 20.

The program begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Lyell B. Clay Concert Theatre of the Creative Arts Center and is free and open to the public. A reception will follow.

The program will feature musicians who were former students of English, including Mary (Fortner) Mozelle ‘80, chapel organist at Rollins College in Winter Park, Orlando, Fla.; Peter DuBois, director of music at Third Presbyterian Church and professor of music at the Eastman School of Music, as well as host of the Sunday morning “With Heart and Voice” radio program originating in Rochester, N.Y.; Beverly (Collins) Clark, ‘58, director of music at Front Royal Presbyterian Church in Virginia; and Robert Zay, a local organist who has served St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Morgantown, as well as the Lutheran Campus Chapel.

Professor English gave many concerts in the United States and Europe. The program for this concert is nearly identical to the one he played at the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris in 1975 for an audience of 10,000 people.

The program includes:

“Homage to Perotin” by Myron Roberts, a longtime teacher of composition at the University of Nebraska;

“Prelude and Fugue in E Flat” by Johann Sebastian Bach, which has a theme which closely resembles the hymn “O God, Our Help in Ages Past”;

“O Mensch bewein’ dein’ Sunde gross” by J.B. Bach, a highly ornamented chorale that English played at the performance exactly as his teacher in France, Marcel Dupre, would have played it;

“A Gothic Prelude” by Eric Delamarter, which is late-Romantic calling for many coloristic effects from the organ;

“Comes Autumn Time” by Leo Sowerby, an exuberant piece by a champion of high standards in church music in the 20th century;

Two Hymn Preludes: “Hyfrydol” and “Greensleeves” by Emma Lou Diemer, who was a composition student of Howard Hanson at the Eastman School and for many years professor of composition at the University of California at Santa Barbara;

“Hornpipe” by John Cook, which is better known as “Mr. Purcell’s Wedding March,” published in 1959; and

“Christus Advenit: Vom Himmel hoch,” a rousing toccata based on the hymn tune “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come.”

English designed the pipe organ for the Creative Arts Center in the 1960s. It is stored in a special off-stage room in the Lyell B. Clay Concert Theatre and will be used for this special memorial concert.

For more information, contact the WVU College of Creative Arts at (304) 293-4359.


CONTACT: Charlene Lattea, College of Creative Arts

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