William Croft (baptised 30 December 1678 – 14 August 1727) was an English composer and organist.
Croft was born at the Manor House, Nether Ettington, Warwickshire. He was educated at the Chapel Royal under the instruction of John Blow, and remained there until 1698. Two years after this departure, he became organist of St. Anne's Church, Soho and he became an organist and 'Gentleman extraordinary' at the Chapel Royal.He shared that post with his friend Jeremiah Clarke.
In 1707, he took over the Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal post, which had been left vacant by the suicide of Jeremiah Clarke,(one of Croft's pupils in this capacity was Maurice Greene). The following year, Croft succeeded Blow (who had lately died) as organist of Westminster Abbey. He composed works for the funeral of Queen Anne (1714) and for the coronation of King George I (1715).
In 1724, Croft published Musica Sacra, a collection of church music, the first such collection to be printed in the form of a score. It contains a Burial Service, which may have been written for Queen Anne or for the Duke of Marlborough.Shortly afterwards his health deteriorated, and he died while visiting Bath.
One of Croft's most enduring pieces is the hymn tune "St Anne" written to the poem Our God, Our Help in Ages Past by Isaac Watts. Other composers subsequently incorporated the tune in their own works. Handel used it, for instance, in an anthem entitled O Praise the Lord and also Hubert Parry in his 1911 Coronation Te Deum .Bach's Fugue in E-flat major BWV 552 is often called the "St. Anne", due to the similarity (coincidental in this case) of its subject to the hymn melody's first phrase. Croft also wrote various violin sonatas, which are not nearly as often performed as is his religious music, but have been occasionally recorded.
Perhaps Croft's most notable legacy is the suite of Funeral Sentences which have been described as a "glorious work of near genius".First published as part of the Burial Service in Musica Sacra, the date and purpose of their composition is uncertain. The seven Sentences themselves are from the Book of Common Prayer and are verses from various books of the Bible, intended to be said or sung during an Anglican funeral. One of the sentences, Thou knowest, Lord, the secrets of our hearts, was not composed by Croft, but by Henry Purcell, part of his 1695 Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary. Croft wrote:
"...there is one verse composed by my predecessor, the famous Mr Henry Purcell, to which, in justice to his memory, his name is applied. The reason why I did not compose that verse anew (so as to render the whole service entirely of my own composition) is obvious to every Artist; in the rest of that service composed by me, I have endeavoured as near as I could, to imitate that great master and celebrated composer, whose name will for ever stand high in the rank of those who have laboured to improve the English style..."
Croft's Funeral Sentences were sung at George Frederic Handel's funeral in 1759, [ deprecated source ]and have been included in every British state funeral since their publication. They were used at the funerals of Diana, Princess of Wales in 1997, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 2002 and Baroness Thatcher in 2012.
Henry Purcell was an English composer. Although it incorporated Italian and French stylistic elements, Purcell's was a uniquely English form of Baroque music. He is generally considered to be one of the greatest English composers; no later native-born English composer approached his fame until Edward Elgar, Ralph Vaughan Williams, William Walton and Benjamin Britten in the 20th century.
John Blow was an English Baroque composer and organist, appointed organist of Westminster Abbey in late 1668. His pupils included William Croft, Jeremiah Clarke and Henry Purcell. In 1685 he was named a private musician to James II. His only stage composition, Venus and Adonis, is thought to have influenced Henry Purcell's later opera Dido and Aeneas. In 1687 he became choirmaster at St Paul's Cathedral, where many of his pieces were performed. In 1699 he was appointed to the newly created post of Composer to the Chapel Royal.
Master of the Queen's Music is a post in the Royal Household of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom. The holder of the post originally served the monarch of England, directing the court orchestra and composing or commissioning music as required.
John Eccles was an English composer.
"I was glad" is a choral introit which is a popular piece in the musical repertoire of the Anglican church. It is traditionally sung in the Church of England as an anthem at the Coronation of the British monarch.
Jeremiah Clarke was an English baroque composer and organist, best known for his Trumpet Voluntary, a popular piece often played at wedding ceremonies.
Thomas Tomkins was a Welsh-born composer of the late Tudor and early Stuart period. In addition to being one of the prominent members of the English Madrigal School, he was a skilled composer of keyboard and consort music, and the last member of the English virginalist school.
Daniel Purcell was an English Baroque composer, the younger brother or cousin of Henry Purcell.
John Weldon was an English composer.
Sir John Frederick Bridge was an English organist, composer, teacher and writer.
A coronation anthem is a piece of choral music written to accompany the coronation of a monarch.
Baroque music of the British Isles bridged the gap between the early music of the Medieval and Renaissance periods and the development of fully fledged and formalised orchestral classical music in the second half of the eighteenth century. It was characterised by more elaborate musical ornamentation, changes in musical notation, new instrumental playing techniques and the rise of new genres such as opera. Although the term Baroque is conventionally used for European music from about 1600, its full effects were not felt in Britain until after 1660, delayed by native trends and developments in music, religious and cultural differences from many European countries and the disruption to court music caused by the Wars of the Three Kingdoms and Interregnum. Under the restored Stuart monarchy the court became once again a centre of musical patronage, but royal interest in music tended to be less significant as the seventeenth century progressed, to be revived again under the House of Hanover. The Baroque era in British music can be seen as one of an interaction of national and international trends, sometimes absorbing continental fashions and practices and sometimes attempting, as in the creation of ballad opera, to produce an indigenous tradition. However, arguably the most significant British composer of the era, George Frideric Handel, was a naturalised German, who helped integrate British and continental music and define the future of the classical music of the United Kingdom that would be officially formed in 1801.
Utrecht Te Deum and Jubilate is the common name for a sacred choral composition in two parts, written by George Frideric Handel to celebrate the Treaty of Utrecht, which established the Peace of Utrecht in 1713, ending the War of the Spanish Succession. He composed a Te Deum, HWV 278, and a Jubilate Deo, HWV 279. The combination of the two texts in English follows earlier models. The official premiere of the work was on 13 July 1713 in a service in St Paul's Cathedral in London.
The English composer Henry Purcell wrote funeral music that includes his Funeral Sentences and the later Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary, Z. 860. Two of the funeral sentences, Man that is born of a woman Z. 27 and In the midst of life we are in death Z. 17, survive in autograph score. The Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary comprises the march and canzona Z. 780 and the funeral sentence Thou knowest, Lord, the secrets of our hearts Z. 58C. It was first performed at the funeral of Queen Mary II of England in March 1695. Purcell's setting of Thou knowest, Lord was performed at his own funeral in November of the same year. In modern performances the march, canzona and three funeral sentences are often combined as Purcell's Funeral Sentences, Z. 860.
The Te Deum in D major, "Queen Caroline" is a canticle Te Deum in D major composed by George Frideric Handel in 1714.
Remember not, Lord, our offences, Z.50, is a five-part choral anthem by the English baroque composer Henry Purcell (1659–95). The anthem is a setting of a passage from the litany compiled by Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, and later included in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. It was composed circa 1679–82 at the beginning of Purcell's tenure as Organist and Master of the Choristers for Westminster Abbey.
Thomas Tudway was an English musician, Professor of Music at Cambridge. He is known as a composer, and for his compilation of a collection of Anglican church music.
Francis Pigott was an English Baroque composer and organist.
Hear my prayer, O Lord, Z. 15, is an eight-part choral anthem by the English composer Henry Purcell (1659–1695). The anthem is a setting of the first verse of Psalm 102 in the version of the Book of Common Prayer. Purcell composed it c. 1682 at the beginning of his tenure as Organist and Master of the Choristers for Westminster Abbey.
Thou knowest, Lord, the secrets of our hearts, Z. 58, designates two choral settings composed by Henry Purcell. The text is one of the Anglican funeral sentences from the Book of Common Prayer. Early versions began possibly in 1672 and were revised twice before 1680. Purcell composed his last version, in a different style, for the 1695 Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary, Z. 860.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to William Croft (composer) .|
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| Joint First Organist of the Chapel Royal with Jeremiah Clarke |
William Croft and Jeremiah Clarke
| First Organist of the Chapel Royal |
| Organist and Master of the Choristers of Westminster Abbey |
| Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal |