But B is for Brewer.
While it’s true that the definition of a Brewer is someone who makes beer; in the world of church music, Brewer is someone quite different.
At this week’s choral evensong at All Saints Church Fulham, the choir sung the Evening Canticles in D by Brewer. Yes, it seems that the choir is continuing to sing works by composers beginning with B.
Sir (Arthur) Herbert Brewer was the organist and master to the choristers at Gloucester Cathedral from 1893 until his death in 1928.
He was an organ scholar at Exeter College, Oxford and the Royal College of Music. He was also the director of the annual Three Choirs Festival for many years, he in fact composed these canticles for the festival in 1927.
Brewer’s Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis are a staple of church choirs across the the country because it is still fun to sing all these years later. The music is available for free on CPDL.
His portrait (above) can be found at the National Portrait Gallery.
This recording of the magnificat is from the Choirs of St. John’s Episcopal in Tampa, FL, USA.