A unique project combining Cavaillé-Coll’s undisputed masterpiece, one of the finest organists of his generation, and a girls’ choir from an historic English former Benedictine convent, in French Marian music of the twentieth century for solo organ and upper voices.
St Ouen in Rouen, dates back to 1318. It is one of the largest churches in France. The organ was built by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll in 1890. It is considered one of the finest organs in the world, and is a distinctive and powerful instrument – the Contra-Bombarde 32 foot is a particularly noteworthy feature of the tonal palette – forming a perfect symbiosis with the generous acoustic of this vast church.
Romsey Abbey has the Benedictine foundation in common with St Ouen, and here the senior girls of Romsey Abbey Choir sing a programme of music dedicated to the Virgin Mary including plainchant which echoes Romsey’s origins as a convent.
Colin Walsh’s association with cathedral music goes back over forty years. He has served, in various capacities, St George’s Chapel Windsor Castle, Christ Church Oxford (where he worked closely with Simon Preston and studied the organ with Nicholas Danby), Salisbury Cathedral, and St Albans Cathedral. He went to Lincoln Cathedral in 1988 as Organist and Master of the Choristers, becoming Organist Laureate in 2003.
As an organ recitalist he has played in all the major venues in the UK, most European countries, the USA, Australasia, Hong Kong and Russia. His recordings on CD and DVD as a choral conductor, accompanist and soloist number nearly forty over many years.
George Richford is a multi award-winning composer and conductor based in the South of England. He grew up in Bromley, South London, and went up to Durham University in 2004, where he was Director of Music at St John’s College Chapel for seven years. He has held Directorship positions at Newcastle Cathedral, Newark Parish Church, Southampton University, and Romsey Abbey, and is in demand as a choral conductor and young voices specialist.