|Sullivan > Major Works > The Light of the World > Crystal Palace
At another concert two excerpts from Mr. Arthur S. Sullivan’s Light of the World, given with such success at the Birmingham Festival in August, were introduced for the first time to a Crystal Palace audience. We refer to the orchestral movements which respectively usher in the opening and concluding parts of the oratorio.
In the first (“at Bethlehem”) Mr. Sullivan has shown with what safety he can follow in the footsteps of the earlier composers, employing the same key (though not precisely the same measure) as is used by Handel in the incomparable “pastoral symphony” of the Messiah, and yet speaking after a manner of his own.
In the second (“at Jerusalem”) Mr. Sullivan takes a higher flight, having a more difficult theme to treat – viz., the troubles and dissentions created at Jerusalem by the presence, the teaching, and the miracles of Christ. The first prepares for the Advent; the last has to do with its important results. In each Mr. Sullivan shows his ability to shape the materials at hand with the judgement and facility of a master.
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