Fantasia in C - (2020)
Richard Keys Biggs - in memoriam
Beginning with open fifths registered double forte, The simple theme begins in the tonic minor, which later turns to the tonic major after visits to distant harmonic regions. Various registrations of the principal chorus are suggested as repetitions for added color, per the wishes of the performer and available stops of an individual instrument.
As my parents were involved in church and synagogue music throughout southern California, this fine organist was within their circle and that of the Los Angeles chapter of the American Guild of Organists. As I grew, I met Biggs' son, John Biggs, as choral instructor at Los Angeles City College, and thereafter met his mother, Lucienne Biggs, who was most supportive to me in a variety of ways. For this other works for them are part of my collections of work, On a Theme of John Biggs - (2017) and Grâce et simplicité , of the same year. Lucienne Biggs' informative and personal biography of her husband was also made available by John, in these last years.
Richard Keys Biggs (1886-1962)
"Richard Keys Biggs was a distinguished American organist and composer whose humble demeanor belied his accomplishments. His career began with the 20th century and continued into the Kennedy years. Biggs studied in London with Sir Richard Runciman Terry, the English organist, choir director and musicologist noted for his revival of Tudor liturgical music—background that gave him a strong feeling for the lineage of English organ traditions. He was awarded an honorary doctorate of music from the Loyola University, Chicago. Active as a church organist in Southern California, Biggs served as organist of the San Diego Exposition and with Episcopal congregations in San Diego and Montréal, Quebec. In the 1940s, he was director of the men’s and boy’s choirs of the Blessed Sacrament parochial school and church in Los Angeles. Biggs was typical of many hard-working organists in achieving distinction without seeking fame. He was teacher of the famed choral director Roger Wagner and of the flamboyant organist, keyboard artist and conductor Anthony Newman. Biggs’ son, the organist John Biggs, is lecturer at Kansas State Teachers College." Biography taken from the Pacific Symphony's Program - "2015-16 PEDALS AND PIPES ORGAN SERIES," 7 February 2016.
6 pages, circa 7' 15" an MP3 demo is here:
The score is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this organ score.
Fantasia in C