On Saturday 13 January, instead of Choral Evensong at 1730, there is an opportunity to hear Messiaen’s complete organ cycle ‘La Nativité du Seigneur’ performed as part of evening worship. The nine movements of the work will be woven into the structure of Evening Prayer, enhanced by prayer and readings. ‘La Nativité’ was completed in 1935, and is one of Messiaen’s earlier and more accessible organ works. It draws upon a wide range of religious imagery in celebration of Christ’s Nativity, and lovers of our fine Cathedral organ are strongly encouraged to immerse themselves in the kaleidoscopic colours, and to meditate upon these musical and theological offerings in the calm of the Cathedral. The organist is David Halls.
There will be two further liturgical performances of Messiaen’s organ cycles in 2018. On Friday 20 April at 1730, ‘Les Corps Glorieux’ will be performed as a liturgical cycle for Easter, and on Wednesday 9 May at the later time of 2100, ‘L’Ascension’ will be performed as part of our worship on the Eve of Ascension. The organist for these two cycles is John Challenger.