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Hear The V/163 Walcker Of Hamburg St. Michaelis


kropf
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The legendary Walcker of St. Michaelis church in Hamburg, completed in 1912 with 163 stops on 5 Manuals (incl. an ethereal division in the roof - btw, this idea is going to be included in the current refurbishment of the church's organs) can be heard online now on the website of Gerhard Walcker-Mayer.

 

IMO, Alfred Sittard's interpretation of Bach's d-moll toccata shows this instrument, which could be seen comparable with the organ of Liverpool cathedral, in an interesting manner. The playing is lively, and registration is interesting, as is the sound of this instrument. (Be careful, not every sample on this page is recorded on that organ).

 

The instrument was damaged severely during WW II, but could have been saved, if consultants had wanted to. They did not.... well, the present Steinmeyer has its merits, too.

 

Here are the links:

Organ information: http://www.gewalcker.de/gewalcker.de/Archi...g-michaelis.htm

Samples page:

http://www.gewalcker.de/gewalcker.de/opus1700.htm

 

Greetings,

KBK

 

Edit: The "Ad nos"-fugue samples are interesting, too - but I don't like the piece :(

oh, and I did not notice, that detail view of the organ description needs password authorization, sorry.

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  • 2 months later...
Guest Geoff McMahon

What a fascinating site. I am surprised there haven't been a lot more enthusiastic comments about it. The interpretation of the Bach is, of course, romantic, but am I alone in thinking that the instrument displays its roots? It works polyphonically in a way that one doesn't find in instruments of the same period in England. I do like Ad Nos actually and find it an interesting piece. The interpretation of that I particularly liked, finding it musical and surprisingly accurate, bearing in mind (I assume) it was done in just two takes, unlike what we hear today which is cobbled together from any number to takes in the editing studio. Why is Alfred Sittard not better recognised today? It would be interesting to know where the other clips were recorded. Isn't it sad what was destroyed in WWII.

 

John

 

PS. I find the interpretation of the Handel somewhat stodgy by today's standards, but who is to say if our present perception of Handel's music is any more accurate than theirs, except of course that the limitations of the instruments he had at his disposal in England were very limiting indeed compared with the Michaelis instrument. Whilst the more generous instruments may have been welcomed by Handel had he had them available, the limitations also generated an intimacy which is (I think) an integral part of the music.

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The legendary Walcker of St. Michaelis church in Hamburg, completed in 1912 with 163 stops on 5 Manuals (incl. an ethereal division in the roof - btw, this idea is going to be included in the current refurbishment of the church's organs) can be heard online now on the website of Gerhard Walcker-Mayer.

 

Greetings,

KBK

 

The 'organ project' currently underway at St Michaelis is a huge undertaking, involving restoration of the existing 5m Steinmeyer organ organ (with reinstatement of the Fernwerk), the Marcussen concert organ, the crypt organ plus a new 2m CPE Bach organ. The work is being done in collaboration by two firms - Klais and Freiburger Orgelbau.

 

For details see Klais

and Freiburger OB

 

(I'm to blame for any infelicities of translation, I should add)

 

JS

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