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Professor of Music Charles Tompkins opens Hartness Organ Series Oct. 2

white man at organ, Charles Tompkins
Furman University Organist Charles Boyd Tompkins. Photo by Danny Bronson, Portland, Oregon

Furman University Organist and Professor of Music Charles Boyd Tompkins will present a recital Tuesday, Oct. 2, at 8 p.m. in the Charles E. Daniel Memorial Chapel on campus.

The recital, the first in the 2018-19 Hartness Organ Series, is free and open to the public. The performance features the Hartness Organ, a three-keyboard, 42-stop instrument built in 2003 by C.B. Fisk organ builders of Gloucester, Massachusetts.

Tompkins will perform works by Johann Sebastian Bach (the organ chorale “Now Thank We All Our God,” and the “Leipzig” Prelude and Fugue in C minor); Sonata No. 4 in B-flat major by Felix Mendelssohn; the lovely and introspective Adagio in E major, by English Romantic composer Frank Bridge; and three movements by the great 20th-century French composer Olivier Messiaen.

The Messiaen pieces include “Joie et Clarté des Corps Glorieux” (“Joy and Brilliance of the Resurrected Ones,” from his 1939 suite “Les Corps Glorieux”); “Communion (Les Oiseux et Les Sources)” (“The Birds and the Springs,” a movement to be played during communion, from his 1951 suite “Messe de la Pentecote”); and “Dieu Parmi Nous” (“God Among Us”), a rousing toccata, which concludes Messiaen’s 1935 suite “La Nativité du Seigneur” (“The Birth of the Lord”).

A member of the Furman faculty since 1986, Tompkins also serves as Associate Organist and Artist in Residence at Greenville’s Christ Church (Episcopal). An award-winning recitalist, he performs each year at universities and churches throughout the United States.

The Hartness Organ Series continues Jan. 15 with a recital by Professor of Organ Kimberly Marshall of Arizona State University, and Feb. 12 with the Chenault Organ Duo featuring Elizabeth and Raymond Chenault. All concerts in the series are free and open to the public.

For further information, contact the Furman Department of Music at 864-294-2086 and FurmanMusic@furman.edu.

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