Above: Trinity College, Cambridge
Image Source = Library of Congress
Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-08091
SIR CHARLES VILLIERS STANFORD (SEPTEMBER 30, 1852-MARCH 29, 1924)
Composer, Organist, and Conductor
Sir Charles Villiers Stanford, knighted in 1901, was a musical prodigy. In fact, at the tender age of ten years, he heard a prestigious ensemble perform one of his compositions. Stanford graduated with honors from Queen’s and Trinity Colleges, Cambridge, then commenced a brilliant musical career as an adult. He, among the most distinguished musical figures of his time, conducted orchestras in Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels, and in various U.S. cities. he also played the organ at Trinity College, conducted the London Bach Society (1885) and the Royal College of Music (1887), and taught music at Cambridge and the Royal College of Music. (That was a partial list.) Stanford was a brilliant composer. He set Irish airs, helping to revive Irish folk music. And he wrote symphonies, operas, motets, cantatas, Irish Rhapsodies, and other works, including Songs of the Sea, Songs of the Fleet, a Stabat Mater, a Magnificat, and various hymn tunes.
One of his greatest works was the tune “St. Patrick’s Breastplate,” the tune for “I Bind Unto Myself Today.”
Stanford’s legacy has enriched my life. It might have improved yours, O reader, also.
KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR
JANUARY 30, 2013 COMMON ERA
THE FEAST OF FREDERICK OAKELEY, ANGLICAN THEN ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST
THE FEAST OF SAINT BATHILDAS, QUEEN OF FRANCE
THE FEAST OF CHARLES I OF ENGLAND AND SCOTLAND, KING AND MARTYR
THE FEAST OF LESSLIE NEWBIGIN, UNITED REFORMED THEOLOGIAN
Almighty God, beautiful in majesty, majestic in holiness:
You have shown us the splendor of creation in the work of your servant Sir Charles Villiers Stanford.
Teach us to drive from this world all chaos and disorder,
that our eyes may behold your glory,
and that at last everyone may know the inexhaustible richness of your new creation
in Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever. Amen.
Isaiah 28:5-6 or Hosea 14:5-8 or 2 Chronicles 20:20-21
Philippians 4:8-9 or Ephesians 5:18b-20
–Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 61
Revised on December 24, 2016