classical music

Olivier Latry: Monuments and Pilgrimages

Part of Classical Season 2020/21

The organist of Notre Dame, Oliver Latry, plays great works written in dedication, thanks and commemoration.

Bach forms the focal point of the recital, which rejoices in his music’s inspiration, influence and adaptability.

In March 1747, Johann Sebastian Bach met Frederick the Great. The king played a tune for the composer and asked him to improvise on it.

Everyone present was poleaxed by the music that followed, not least by its florid, splendid opening.

Bach retained it to open his gift of thanks to the monarch, The Musical Offering, which also opens this recital.

A century after Bach’s meeting with Frederick, the composer Franz Liszt accepted a job in Weimar. Inspired by Bach’s time in the city, the great Romantic rekindled his love for the organ.

He composed his monumental tribute to his predecessor, the Prelude and Fugue on B-A-C-H (in which he used Bach’s initials to spell out his main motif) and arranged other Bach scores, including music from the composer’s resplendent cantata Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis and the tremendous Fantasia and Fugue in G minor.

Bach was the greatest organist of his day, and Olivier Latry is one of the finest of ours. He was appointed a titular organist at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris at the age of just 23, and was heartbroken when the church went up in flames in 2019. Mercifully, Latry’s organ escaped major damage.

Latry’s return to Royal Festival Hall’s organ bench includes a look at Bach through the lens of the distinctive French organ tradition, including Charles-Marie Widor’s organ arrangement of the consolatory final pages of the composer’s St Matthew Passion and Eugene Gigout’s take on a soulful aria from Bach’s Pentecost cantata.

Performers

Olivier Latry organ

Repertoire

JS Bach: Ricercar a 6 from A Musical Offering
Widor: Marche du Veilleur de nuit from Bach's Memento; Mattheus-Final from Bach's Memento
Liszt: Consolation No.4 in D flat; Variations on a theme of Bach `Weinen, Klagen', S.180 arr. Dupré
Interval
Liszt: Introduction and Fugue from Bach's Cantata No.21 `Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis', S.660
JS Bach: Fantasia and Fugue in G minor, BWV.542 arr. Liszt
Eugène Gigout: Air célèbre de la Pentecôte (after Bach)
Liszt: Prelude and Fugue on the name BACH, S.260 arr. Guillou

Dates & times

7 Jun 2021
Approximate run time: 105 mins
Run times may vary, find out more

where

Royal Festival Hall

Pricing

£15
Booking fee: £3.50 (Members £0.00)

Multi-buy discount

£15

Multi-buy discount
Save money when you book two or more International Organ Series concerts. To receive your series discount, tickets to all the applicable concerts must be purchased in the same transaction – just add more events to your basket to get the discounts below. Book 2 events, save 10%. Book 3 or more events, save 20%. Not available on Premium seats.

Concessions

25% off
Find out more about our Concessions policy

need to know

Ticketing
Save money when you book two or more International Organ Series concerts. To receive your series discount, tickets to all the applicable concerts must be purchased in the same transaction – just add more events to your basket to get the discounts below.
Book 2 events, save 10%
Book 3 or more events, save 20%
Not available on Premium seats.

Southbank Centre takes a strong view on secondary ticketing. We require the lead booker to attend (photo ID may be requested). Tickets can only be resold by Southbank Centre or one of its authorised agents.

Discounted student tickets are available from Student Pulse in the month before this concert. Some of these seats are on the stage.
Download the Student Pulse app or register online.

Related events
Doyen of French organists Olivier Latry discusses his globetrotting career with Southbank Centre’s organ curator, William McVicker. Admission free.