A number of comments and experiences are connecting for me with Cathedral music. Transforming and spiritual, the mood and atmosphere set in Cathedral buildings can be overwhelming. A recent concert in Chichester with poetry and artwork along with Messaien’s music was such a transporting event. Simply attending the Cathedral services with traditional or modern settings of harmony and the immense reverberation of the organ in a huge space – an experience you would wish to be often repeated. But what happens when we try to transport Cathedral music into smaller churches? So much controversy about inaccessibility, exclusivity. The age-old argument between excellence and social inclusion. We did not decorate our Cathedrals with amateur stonework or transitory popular works of art, so why not keep precious hold of the great works of Howells, Stanford and the like – a blessing in the English church.

a view of Chichester cathedral

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