If your household was like mine last night, along with millions of other Downton Abbey addicts, we had our televisions tuned to the last episode of Season Six and hung on every word written by series creator, Julian Fellowes, who related this incident with a woman he met in California:
I’m always very touched by how emotionally involved they get in the whole thing. I find it quite moving, actually. This woman grabbed me in California and she said, “Please make Edith happy!” There were tears in her eyes. I said, “Well, I’ll do my best.” It is rather extraordinary that these people you’ve made up in your head become so important to their supporters.
Agonizingly it took six seasons for us Downton Abbey junkies to get a happy ending for Lady Edith — a grand wedding to Bertie Pelham, and naturally my ears were tuning in to find out what music they were going to use. Several readers to this blog asked me what was the music played at the wedding and I’m guessing they wanted to know because they are future brides who want to make the music for their own weddings memorable.
There were two pieces played during the scenes in the church before the wedding — the “pre-service” music began with the “Air” from Georg Friedrich Handel’s Water Music, which is an old standby in many organists’ repertoires. It is a popular piece often used as music during the signing of the registers in the wedding ceremony. Here is an extremely slow performance by Richard Shireby:
Next Bach’s “Prelude No. 1 in C Major, BWV 846” from the Well-Tempered Clavier was played in the second church scene. Maybe you’ve heard a vocalist sing a version arranged by Charles Gounod, to the words of “Ave Maria.” I’ve embedded Tzvi Erez’ performance of just the keyboard part here:
For the processional, it was Handel’s “Arrival of the Queen of Sheba,” in which Lady Edith entered with her father, Lord Grantham. Here is a performance on the Mühleisen organ in Arendal Trinity Church, Norway, by Ole Karsten Sundlisæter.
So many happy endings last night in addition to Lady Edith’s wedding: Lady Mary revealed her pregnancy with second husband Henry Talbot, Tom Branson and Henry went into the car dealership business together, Isobel Crawley found out that her friend Lord Merton did not really have pernicious anemia, Anna and Bates had a baby boy, Thomas Barrow became the head butler at Downton when Carson developed palsy, and even Daisy decided she liked Andy, and Mr. Mason wanted to see more of Mrs. Patmore.
After six seasons, this show will definitely be missed! Good-bye, Mistew Bawwow.