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Geoffrey Atkinson

List of Compositions and Arrangements

Arrangements or free compositions using pre-existing material are noted in italics. 


1.  Organ Music - Oecumuse                             

Improvisation-Epilogue on 'Ding-Dong Merrily on High' (1986)
(For an newer version, please see here)
Chorale Meditation on 'Kilmarnock' (1988) £4.00
Mr Henry Purcell's Promenade  (1990) £4.00
Reflections on 'Amazing Grace' (1992) £6.00
Sir Edward's Constitutional (1996) £5.00
Elegy on a Scottish Fiddle Tune (1998) £5.00
A Scots Lullaby (based on Dream Angus)   (1999) £4.00
A Little Liturgical Suite based on Scottish Folk Melodies (1999) £8.00

2.  Organ Transcriptions - Oecumuse                             

Greig - Symphonic Dance op. 64/2 (1997) £5.00
Greig - Symphonic Dance op. 64/2 (1997) £5.00
Borodin - Trio from Symphony No. 3 (1997) £5.00
Debussy - Andantino from String Quartet op. 10 (1997) £5.00


Choral Music

3. Anthems

3a) Oecumuse The Lord bless you and keep you
(unison/organ 1981)
I would be true
(Londonderry Air, unison/organ 1983/97)
Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
(Spiritual, SATB 1986/92)
Thou art Peter
(SATB/organ 1989 - revised and reset 2001)
The Garden of thy Soul
(SATB/organ 1990 - revised and reset 2001)
Sing, my Tongue, the Glorious Battle
(Pange Lingua, SAB/organ 1995)
For I long to see you
(SATB + congregation/organ 1996)
Brother James' Air
(Solo (opt.) or Unison or SA + TB/organ 1997)
Available in C, D,
It is a thing most wonderful
(American folk tune, SATB/organ 1996)
Fairest Lord Jesus
(SATB/organ 1998)


3b) Fagus

The Gate of the Year

(SATB/Organ 1987 rev 2001)

1 copy £3.00

5 and over £2.50 each



Charles Wood - The passion of our Lord

(According to St Mark.)

Plainsong adaptations.


1 copy £4.00

5 and over £2.50 each



Fair waved the golden corn (B)

SATB and Organ

1 copy £2.00

5 and over £1.50

Anyone looking for anthems for Harvest Festival will realise that apart from Maurice Green’s Visiting of the Earth, the repertoire is a bit thin.  Hence this bog standard hymn-anthem which goes through all the expected modulations and motions.  Its saving grace is the charming tune Scottish tune ‘Selma’ to which these words are set the in old English Hymnal. (Why on earth did they drop it in the new edition (No 260)?  Some editors are obviously daft; even if someone did have a yen for ‘Holyrood’ there is plenty of space for a second tune on the music page).   Anyway, my choir sing it cheerfully - and they would be quick to tell me if they thought it was rubbish.

O King of the Tree of Life (A)

SAB / Organ

1 copy £2.00

5 and over £1.50 each

  The words were found inscribed on a memorial in a chapel in remote Aberdeenshire, and then traced to ‘Carmina Gadelica’ a large collection of prayers gathered from the Western isles of Scotland and published over 100 years ago.  The voice parts are simple and the idiom sweetly tuneful.
Look down, O Lord (B)
S(S)ATB and Organ


  The text is a collect from the Office of Compline, and was written by your publisher for an occasion when his choir visited a neighbouring Episcopal church (with a noteworthy acoustic) to sing Evensong. It was very well received. All composers of course will claim this, but in this case a) it happens to be true, b) he considers it to be one of his best efforts ever. So!
I waited patiently for God (A)
SATB or SAB and Organ

 £3.00 or ‘licence to print’

  This paraphrase of Psalm 40 is set to the achingly beautiful traditional Gaelic tune ‘Bays of Harris’, a tune which featured last September during the Queen’s funeral service.
3c) Hinshaw The Lord is risen
(SATB + children's choir (optional) +
congregation/organ 1979)
Come labour On
(Hymn tune Salonica, SATB/organ 1997)

5. Introits - Oecumuse

Behold the Cross displayed

(SATB 1984 - reset 2001)

For now have I chosen and sanctified this house
(SATB/organ 1987 - reset 2001)
Five Brief Anthems for Use as Lentren Introits
(SATB/organ 1990)
Seven Occasional Introits
(SATB or SATB/organ 1997)

6. Christmas Carols

6a) Oecumuse Balulow
(SATB + S solo (optional) 1986/97)
Rorate Coeli Desuper
(SATB/organ 1975/97)
Personent hodie
(SATB/organ + percussion 1997)
Christ's now born, 'tis Christmas Day
(Joseph Dearest, Anthem or Introit, SATB 1997)
6b) Bardic St Joseph's Carol
(SATB + baritone solo 1990) POA
  SATB + Strings (1998) Hire or Buy POA
6c) Fagus All Sons of Adam 1 copy £2.50
  (SATB/Organ) 5 or more £1.50 each
  Winner of the 2002 William Baird Ross Competition  
Tomorrow shall be my dancing day (A)
SATB + Organ
1 copy £2.50
5 or more £1.50 each
   I always loved this tune yet could never find a decent, sensible arrangement for modest forces. So I just had to make my own. This one may sound as though it’s the result of knowing Andrew Carter’s ‘A maiden most gentle’ with its flute solo etc. but it doesn’t suddenly dive off into a section for 3 part unaccompanied men etc.; if they can sing a hymn they can sing this.  

7. Secular Works

7a) Oecumuse Three Traditional Scottish Songs
(Blyth was the Time, Green Grow the Rashes, O!, Ye Banks and Braes, SATB 1985/97)
7b) Bardic Aignish
(SATB/violin, cello, harpischord or piano 1991)
7c) Bardic Where the Heather Grows
(Ten Scottish Folksongs arranged for voice and piano 1996)
Dreams to Sell
(Suite of Five Scottish Folksongs for Baritone solo and/or SATB/piano or string orchestra 1988/97)
full score, vocal score, parts
Sale or Hire


7d) Fagus Elegy on a Scottish Fiddle Tune (1998)
(Piano) £5.00
(String - Score + Parts) POA

8. Orchestrations -

Goin' Home
(Arrangement of W. A. Fisher's setting of words to a section of the slow movement of Dvorak's Symphony No. 9)


9. Choral

Hymn Inspiration  (B)

Free Organ Accompaniments for 72 well-known hymns


  The original ‘Hymn Inspiration’ appeared in a best-selling collection of 6 volumes originally published by Oecumuse.  The composer also contributed to various other compilations issued by the same publisher under somewhat rude titles which gained him (the publisher i.e.) some notorietyThis new volume now collects all of this composer’s ‘funny last verses’ in the one book with a fine new cover and introduction.  All the settings have been inspected carefully and revised as necessary, and in some cases simplified.  There is also an addition - a version of the tune ‘Praise my Soulwritten by Goss in 1868 for verse 4 of the same hymn ‘Frail as summer’s flower we flourish’ (not in all hymnbooks).


Goes the Christ in the Stranger’s Guise (A-B)
SAB and Organ

One copy £2.00
Five or more each £1.50

  More ‘wistful tartanry’ you might say (see above, GA). This simple piece is a working of a plaintive Gaelic folk song setting the lovely words of an ancient Celtic hospitality rune.
(NB with each set which is formatted at 8 pages, a reduced format organ score printed on card which avoids page turns will be supplied free of charge.)

O Jesu, blessed Lord (A+)
(Two versions - 3 part and 4 part + organ)


  This is a communion motet, setting a text by T. Kingo (1634-1703). The choir sang it without difficulty, and the minister liked it, so maybe it will be of interest to others.

Hymn Anthem on ‘Amazing Grace’ (A/B)
SATB (optional S B soloists and Organ)


  John Newton’s hymn is a perfect fit for this traditional Scottish tune (though this provenance is disputed in some quarters). The soloists are optional and if they can sing a hymn in four parts including a descant, they can sing this.

They shall grow not old (B) £2.00
  This is a reworking of an earlier composition (not issued because of copyright restrictions) which now has the music of ‘The Last Post’ interleaved.

Holy Spirit, Gift Bestower (A)
SATB + Organ
  A simple setting of the beautiful Welsh folk tune Yr. Hun Gin. This is ideal for use as a communion motet.

They shall grow not old (B)     


Optional Trumpet part £1.00

Clearly this has been written for a Remembrance Day Service, but it was not published earlier as the words were then still in copyright.  The choral setting of the text is interleaved with the music of the ‘Last Post’ which can be played by the organ alone, soloing a version of the bugle call, or preferably played by  an optional trumpet


Were you there? (YouTube) (B)

Arranged for Baritone solo, SATB and Organ.


This is a new arrangement of the well-known spiritual, based on an original version for SATB unaccompanied, first published by Oecumuse in 1986.


10. Contemporary Organ Music and Organ Arrangements

A Second Suite for Organ (B+)

 Based on Scottish Folk Tunes


The prize-winning ‘A Little Liturgical Suite based on Scottish Folk Melodies’ has been so well received that it is hoped that a successor might also find acceptance.  However for this Second Suite the word ‘Liturgical’ has been dropped because while the first two items might well be played as voluntaries, the third, a somewhat inebriated reel, is only too secular in its expression. One reviewer of the First (Little Liturgical) Suite described it as ‘wistful tartanry’ which was probably not meant entirely as a compliment.  However it is resolutely accepted as such, since it admirably describes the aim in the slower movements of both works.

Consolation (A + /B)


  Seated one day at the organ (as they say) I found that a persistent little tune was bugging me until I set it down; it is in the vein so successfully exploited by Stephen Burtonwood (this is clearly infectious) and as his compositions are always popular I thought I should see where it went. Even the ‘B’ section poured out almost effortlessly, which is unusual for me
Chorale Meditation on ‘Kilmarnock’ (B)


  This piece had a good innings in the Oecumuse days, first appearing in the composer’s manuscript, then computer-set. The opportunity has been taken to make some minor changes and as the piece is now set in Sibelius it can now be accessed via the Web site and is also available as a pdf. There are unsuspected emotional undercurrents in this fine old Scottish tune, which the interludes and textures seek to exploit.

Five Trumpet Tunes (B)

Mr Henry Purcell’s Promenade - The Trumpeter of Fyvie - A Trumpet Minuet (Homage to Hollins) - Trumpet Procession - A Tribute to John Hope, Trumpeter.


Your publisher submits his work to himself and doesn’t accept everything by any means. But he has a weakness for trumpet tunes (since the organ he plays has a fine solo heavy reed stop). These five pieces have had a modicum of success (the last one was described by one reviewer as being ‘disturbingly catchy’). All have appeared before scattered through other issues. Here they are gathered into an omnibus edition, and offered with the convenience of being under one cover.

Postlude on Christ ist erstanden (C-)

Alleluia! Christ is Risen


This is a lively Easter Postlude on a fine old tune. More difficult than ‘B’, but not quite ‘C’, hence the C- indication for difficulty.
Postlude for Pentecost (B-C)


  This is a bit more flamboyant and dissonant than usual, with a distinctive though not difficult pedal part. The quiet and mysterious second section is followed by a reprise of the first section in the major key.


  Postlude on ‘Veni Emmanuel’ (B) £4.00
  This is the composer’s re-harmonisation of the Advent hymn-tune in ‘Hymn Inspiration’, expanded into a closing voluntary for Advent Sunday beginning with the tune thundering out on the Tuba in the tenor register.  Simpleminded doubtless, vulgar possibly, but quite useful really.

Suite of Old Dances (A+/B)

Siciliana - Pavane - Trumpet Minuet (Homage to Hollins)



These movements exploit old dance forms in a tuneful and what is intended to be an attractive manner. They are not too difficult and can be used as voluntaries or recital pieces either singly or as a suite. The ‘Trumpet Minuet’ evokes the spirit of one of Alfred Hollins’ most celebrated works but is substantially easier.

Toccata Ingenue (B)


  The subtitle is Homage to Gordon Young and the dedication is For all those who like their music to sound more difficult than it really is. Gordon Young’s Prelude in Classic Style still has currency and is good fun to play. So here is a not entirely serious piece in similar vein. Despite the levity there are several plaintive touches.
Two Scottish Pieces (B+)
Celtic Elegy,
A Tribute to John Hope, Trumpeter


  The ‘Elegy’ is lyrical and reflective, but the middle section is more anguished. John Hope (c.1472-1554) was a court trumpeter in Edinburgh to James IV of Scotland. He is said to have been 'good company and a popular figure about town, above all an honourable man, and a God-fearing one'. This ‘Tribute’ is a jaunty air to celebrate these characteristics, and if used as a Postlude it will send them off for their coffee with a spring in their step.

Wistful Tartanry (A/B)

Auld Lang Syne (an alternative tune) - The Bonnie Briar Bush - Dream Angus - Fear a’ Bhàta (The Boatman) - The Flower of the Quern - O Mo Dhùthaich (O, my Country) - O weep, ye Streams, till ye run dry wi’ Wae (woe)


One reviewer of John Kitchen’s recording of my ‘Little Liturgical Suite’ described it as ‘wistful tartanry’ which I do not think was meant entirely as a compliment. However I resolutely accept it as such, since it admirably describes my aim there, and in these further arrangements of some exquisite melodies. Clearly, I trust, given the similarity of mood they are not intended to be performed as a suite. Some tunes are quite sad and would be appropriate for a funeral of someone with Scottish connections.

Trumpet Tune no.6 (B)

'Farewell to Queen’s Cross’

  For the final service upon my retiral from my post as organist at Aberdeen’s Queen’s Cross Church I decided to compose my own send off. This, then, is a jaunty tune but tinged with regretful moments.    
  Four Pavans - Thomas Tomkins (1572-1656) – Thomas Weelkes (1576-1623) - transcribed with Paul Edwards    

Improvisation-Epilogue on ‘Ding Dong Merrily on High (B)

  First published by Oecumuse in 1986 this piece has had a good innings, but it was unnecessarily difficult in one or two places. So here is a new version made much more playable (and recommended for oldies.)    




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Last updated: 01 October 2023