"9/11 | Coming Together" 20th Anniversary Special

Videos

October 20, 2021 | #128 Piping Up! Organ Concerts at Temple Square

Piping Up! Organ Concerts at Temple Square is streamed online every Wednesday at 12:00 noon MDT. Piping Up! can be viewed on TheTabernacleChoir.org, the Choir’s YouTube channel, the Choir’s Facebook page, and Broadcasts.ChurchofJesusChrist.org. When concerts are concluded, they are available for on-demand viewing on the Choir’s website, YouTube and Facebook.

These programs continue the tradition of noon organ recitals at Temple Square—a tradition that has lasted for more than a century. The concerts are produced without an audience and comply with all COVID-19 guidelines. Each concert will feature a different Tabernacle or Temple Square organist and is hosted by Luke Howard.

Repertoire

Organist: Joseph Peeples

1. Allegro con brio, from Sonata no. 4 in B-flat Major . . . . . . . . . . . .Felix Mendelssohn
2. Largo, from Trio Sonata no. 5 in C Major . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Johann Sebastian Bach
3. a. Come, Come, Ye Saints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . arr. by organist
b. An Old Melody: Sweet Hour of Prayer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . arr. by organist
4. Final, from Symphony no. 5 in A Minor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Louis Vierne

LISTENER REQUESTED SELECTION Go to the Piping Up! web page to make your request!

Focus Piece

An on-going feature of Piping Up! Organ Concerts at Temple Square is a focus piece with additional inspirational background on a specific repertoire selection. Written by host Luke Howard, a professor of music at Brigham Young University, the focus piece connects the music in a unique way to lift and inspire listeners.

“Largo,” from Sonata No. 5, BWV 529 (J. S. Bach)

Cadences in music can often function like the punctuation in a sentence—they act as pauses, breaks, indicating the completion or the continuation of a musical thought. And, like punctuation marks, there are different kinds of cadences, each with their own purpose.

Typically, in a piece of music from the 18th century, the final cadence brings the music back home to where it began, harmonically-speaking. That’s typical, but it’s not always the case. In baroque-era music, there’s a kind of cadence that does the exact opposite. It’s called a “Phrygian cadence,” and you’ll often hear it at the end of an interior movement, especially if it’s in a minor key. In J. S. Bach’s Organ Sonata No. 5, for example, the first and last movements, the “exterior” movements, are in C major; they begin in C major, and end in C major, and go on some wonderful harmonic journeys in between. The middle movement, however, is in A minor. This gorgeous, lyrical Adagio starts in A minor, and Bach takes us on some wonderful harmonic journeys before cadencing back to A minor near the end.

But it’s not actually the end of the movement. Over the final two measures, Bach adds this Phrygian cadence, which slips downward from A-minor harmony—the key of the movement—through G and F, and ends on an E major triad. In music theory terms, the movement ends on dominant harmony, not tonic. In listening terms, it sounds like we made it home, then opened the door immediately to go somewhere else before unpacking our luggage. In musical situations such as this, the next movement is almost always in a major key, and upbeat. So while a Phrygian cadence can leave a movement feeling incomplete or open-ended, it’s usually rewarded with the cheerfulness and energy that follows.

That’s exactly what a final Phrygian cadence does. Like ellipsis points at the end of a sentence, it tells us, “I’ve said everything I need to say for now. But hang around for a bit—there’s more to come.” I love that concept, that musical hint that it’s not yet the end, even though it felt for a moment like it should be.

In listening for and hearing the voice of God, we may feel like we want everything also wrapped up neatly in a self-contained unit. So, sometimes we need a reminder that we may not have reached the end just yet. In our prayers, our reading of inspired scripture, our yearning for wisdom, inspiration, and answers from heaven, it can be tremendously heartwarming to perceive a divine voice, a cadence that hints, “Hang around for a bit. Be patient. There’s something more to come.”