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The organs and organists of St Nicholas, Great Yarmouth 1733-1894.

Hayden, Andrew 2018. The organs and organists of St Nicholas, Great Yarmouth 1733-1894. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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This study explores the relationship which developed between the organ and organists of St Nicholas's Parish Church, Great Yarmouth, and the Borough of Great Yarmouth and its administrative body, the Corporation and Assembly. Hitherto, most research regarding organs and organists has tended to view them in isolation without exploring the interactions that might take place between them as the apparatus of the church's music, and secular bodies, in this case the governing agencies and populace of the Borough. That the two became so entwined and that the fortunes of one were so heavily dependent on the other and hence so mutually influenced, is the key finding of this research. It has revealed how it was to separate the immediate function of the organ and its players—namely, to provide music for the church's liturgy--from what the organ represented in the eyes of the Borough; how the organ became symbolic of the Borough's wealth and status: an outward display of the power and authority wielded principally by the Borough and to which the Church itself had become subordinated. It is also shown here that the ability of the organ to channel these attributes resided not in its physical qualities as first constructed, though they represented a starting point, but in the shifting perceptions of what the organ came to mean when measured against prevailing ideas of progress and modernity. Missing was any kind of ability to attribute value to historical sentiment, though there were those for whom this did have meaning. The result was that the physicality of the organ became ever more diluted until all that was left were a few remnants such as the organ's casefront, and even that demoted to irrelevance. Instructively, the Church appears to have concurred with a perception of the instrument as a 'civic church organ', while at the same time looking to the Borough to give concrete expression to that perception.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Date Type: Submission
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Music
Uncontrolled Keywords: Music, organ, organist, Norfolk, eighteenth century, choral, choir, mercantile, civic, Jordan, Bishop, Hill, parochial, parish, controversy, society, borough, populace, organ builder, Heighington, Chicheley, Mantel, Crookenden, Warne, Stonex, Hare, Venables, MacKenzie, Lacon, Preston, consistory, court, Norwich, Yarmouth, Smart.
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 14 November 2018
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2021 14:20

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