The Wilfred Heaton Edition

The Children’s Friend  is one of three works which Wilfred Heaton composed with the Salvation Army’s Second (later Triumph) Series Journal in mind. Music in four or five parts was the norm and there were just two B flat cornet parts and two parts for E flat horns. Although dating from his 20s or 30s, the manuscript upon which this edition is based is in the elegant calligraphy of his later years.

Wilfred Heaton’s theme is the gently lilting tune In Memoriam by that most quintessential of Victorian composers Sir John Stainer (1840-1901). It is associated most closely with the children’s hymn by A. Midlane, beginning, "There’s a Friend for little children".           

Heaton’s beautifully proportioned treatment begins with the innocence of the opening two-fold statement of Stainer’s melody. An incisive, jaunty march follows. The impassioned intensity of the Adagio variation recalls similar moments in works of the same vintage like Just as I am and Celestial Prospect. The finale returns to the calm reflective mood of the opening.

In this performing edition, Heaton’s text has been preserved, but some additional parts (flugel horn and percussion, including timps.) and cues (in baritone, trombone and euphonium parts) have been included for optional performance by larger or more traditionally constituted bands.

Duration: 7 mins

£40 plus postage and packing

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