Concerto No. 1 in E major, Op. 8 No. 1, RV 269, La Primavera (Spring)
i. Allegro ii. Largo e pianissimo sempre iii. Allegro pastorale
Springtime is upon us.
The birds celebrate her return with festive song,
and murmuring streams are
softly caressed by the breezes.
Thunderstorms, those heralds of Spring, roar,
casting their dark mantle over heaven,
Then they die away to silence,
and the birds take up their charming songs once more.
Largo e pianissimo sempre
On the flower-strewn meadow, with leafy branches
rustling overhead, the goat-herd sleeps,
his faithful dog beside him.
Led by the festive sound of rustic bagpipes,
nymphs and shepherds lightly dance
beneath the brilliant canopy of spring.
Spring was recorded at the organ of St Paul's Church, Royton.
The Organ was built by Harrison & Harrison Ltd (1956) and was restored by Willis & Sons Ltd (2016).
Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 8, RV 315, LEstate (Summer)
i. Allegro non molto ii. Adagio e piano - Presto e forte iii. Presto
Allegro non molto
Under a hard Season, fired up by the Sun
Languishes man, languishes the flock and burns the pine
We hear the cuckoo's voice;
then sweet songs of the turtledove and finch are heard.
Soft breezes stir the air, but threatening
the North Wind sweeps them suddenly aside.
The shepherd trembles,
fearing violent storms and his fate.
Adagio e piano - Presto e forte
The fear of lightning and fierce thunder
Robs his tired limbs of rest
As gnats and flies buzz furiously around.
Alas, his fears were justified
Summer was recorded on the 'Father' Willis organ of Hereford Cathedral.
Celebrates the peasant, with songs and dances,
The pleasure of a bountiful harvest.
And fired up by Bacchus' liquor,
many end their revelry in sleep.
Everyone is made to forget their cares and to sing and dance
By the air which is tempered with pleasure
And (by) the season that invites so many, many
Out of their sweetest slumber to fine enjoyment
The hunters emerge at the new dawn,
And with horns and dogs and guns depart upon their hunting
The beast flees and they follow its trail;
Terrified and tired of the great noise
Of guns and dogs, the beast, wounded, threatens
Languidly to flee, but harried, dies.
Autumn was recorded on the organ of St. Lamberti, Münster, Germany
(Organ by Karl Schuke, Berlin 1989 - Enlarged 2006)
Concerto No. 4 in F minor, Op. 8 No. 4, RV 297, LInverno (Winter)
i. Allegro non molto ii. Largo iii. Allegro
Allegro non molto
To tremble from cold in the icy snow,
In the harsh breath of a horrid wind;
To run, stamping one's feet every moment,
Our teeth chattering in the extreme cold
Before the fire to pass peaceful,
Contented days while the rain outside pours down.
We tread the icy path slowly and cautiously,
for fear of tripping and falling.
Then turn abruptly, slip, crash on the ground and,
rising, hasten on across the ice lest it cracks up.
We feel the chill north winds course through the home
despite the locked and bolted doors...
this is winter, which nonetheless
brings its own delights.
Winter was recorded on the organ of Basílica de Santa María, Elche, Spain
(Organ by Gerhard Grenzing - 2006)