Gerhard Aumüller

Organs and Organ Builders in Hesse During the Reign of Landgraves Wilhelm IV. and Moritz "The Learned"

The only contemporary instrument stemming from the time, when Heinrich Schütz served as organ player at the court of the landgrave of Hesse-Kassel, is the so-called "Althefer-Positiv", an organ exhibited in the University-Museum located at Marburg Castle. It represents a type of instrument preferred both by landgrave Wilhelm IV., who although somewhat pedantic, was deeply interested both in art and science, as well as by his son, landgrave Moritz, named "The Learned", a highly gifted, but politically spontaneous prince. During Wilhelm's reign, mostly non-Hessian organ builders worked in the area. In the church of Fritzlar, at that time belonging to the Archbishopric of Mainz, Heinrich Compenius (the elder) built a large organ (with spring chests?), and in the adjacent principality of Hesse-Marburg, reigned by Wilhelm's brother Ludwig IV., Hans Müller, originating from Brunswick and later living at Celle, built and restored some organs in Marburg. Only by the end of Moritz' reign, some more prominent Hessian organ builders worked in Fritzlar (Jacobus Hein) and Lich (Georg Wagner). The organs ordered by Wilhelm, served different purposes: 1. for private rehearsal, 2. as orchestra instruments of the court music, 3. as liturgical instruments in the court churches (Rotenburg, Schmalkalden, Kassel) and 4. as representative gifts of honour to close friends and relatives. Daniel Maier, organ builder from Göttingen, under the influence of Wilhelm developed a characteristic type of instrument/claviorganum, representing the typical "Kassel Court Style". Two examples for the politically motivated gifts are the as yet unknown instruments, which Wilhelm ordered with Daniel Maier for his brother Ludwig in Marburg and King Charles IX. of Sweden. Wilhelm's son Moritz fundamentally changed the musical court style: in place of the then old-fashioned claviorgana, he ordered large representative organs for his residential town of Kassel built by the famous organ builders Scherer from Hamburg. As the heir of Hesse-Marburg, he took over a number of instruments from Marburg castle, while he donated others to local church communities. Presumably, the so-called "Althefer-Positiv" exhibited in Marburg Castle, belongs to this category. Based on the studies of E. Trinkaus and on stylistic analyses performed by R. Menger, M. Kjersgaard and D. Schröder, the core of the first-class instrument was made around 1580, which later was transferred to the small town of Wetter, where it was restored by the local craftsmen Althefer and served as the church organ there until 1779, when it was sold to the small community of Friedlos close to Bad Hersfeld. In 1883, it was purchased for the university collections in Marburg by Ludwig Bickell, where it is retained until today.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 37-64]


Martin Blindow

The organ documents from the Peters Church in Soest and their importance for music history in Westfalen

Since the middle of the 15th century there were Organbuilders in Soest. Johann Busse, presumably a student of Marten de Mare, settled in Soest in 1604 and married a daughter of Arnold Buder in 1626. His work can be traced up to the middle of the 17th century. Fifteen organs by Johann Georg Fromme (second half of the 18th century) are known, and his son Nicolaus Fromme took over the business which lasted up to 1850. In this time period a second, less important firm in Soest was led by Bernhard and Engelbert Ahmer. We know little about Adam Fischer (about 1870) and Heinrich Sassenhoff (about 1840), both from Soest. From 1611 to 1617 Johann Busse built a 3 manual organ for the Peters church, in several stages, which was sold in 1661 to the congregation in Unna. In 1649 Heinrich Reinking from Bielefeld delivered another 3 manual instrument for the Peters Church, which in its turn was replaced a hundred years later by Schulze from Paulinzella (III/ 40).

Johann Gottlob Töpfer and the composer and virtuoso Jan Albertus van Eyken (1823-1868) wrote thorough reports on the instrument. The Schulze organ was badly damaged in the second world war and was repaired, rebuilt and enlarged in 1949 to 4 manuals and 46 registers by Kemper from Lübeck. Already in 1963/64 the organ had to be replaced and the 1904 Steinmeyer from St. Sebald’s in Nürnberg (originally built for St. Jakob in Oettingen) was purchased and rebuilt for Soest, with enlargement to 49 registers. In 2006 the church will get a new 3 manual instrument (III45 + 2 Tr.) from Hartwig Späth.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 99-141]


Holger Brülls

Organ Building in the 20th Century; Modern and Postmodern Architectural Doctrine.
Observations on the relationship between organ and space in the context of architectural history and planning theory

The writer discusses the art history of the organ in the 20th century in its modern and postmodern setting. The organ became an architectural form of a particular kind in the 20th century. Through the lack of ornament found in functionalist modern church building, and the disappearance of the architectonic character of altar and chancel, the organ gradually gained a spatial dominance to an extent not previously encountered.

At the same time the form of the instrument is subjugated to functional architectural theory (form as a result of function, inner structure becoming easily readable on the outside, "Werkprospekt"). The associated building and structural standards (proper use of work and material, "honest solutions") are of moral rather than architectural and aesthetic nature.

With the emergence of postmodern criticism of now-dated functionalism, choice of form on purely artistic and aesthetic rather than functional grounds finds wider acceptance. While most church architects of the modern age ignored the problems of organ planning, a few outstanding architects, in particular Otto Bartning and Alvar Aalto, found exemplary ways to integrate organ and space.

Today's historical monuments commissions, which aim to preserve classical modern church buildings, often lack understanding of the particular importance of the organ in such a space. Organ building, which thinks in traditional technical categories, lacks the readiness to adapt technically and structurally to the specific spatial situations of these churches, for instance through freestanding front pipes, split groundplans and electric action.

The architect's role in the layout of the organ is fundamentally in conflict. Consideration of the outstanding achievements of modern organ architecture shows that quality is not guaranteed through consultation with architects; more often the work of gifted organ builders as "professional amateurs", who best know the planning and development stages, is exemplary

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 347-400]


Hermann J. Busch

The free reeds in Friedrich Ladegast's organs and their use

In Friedrich Ladegast's specifications few reeds appear and except for manual trumpets and some Pedal reeds, all are free.

Registrations with free reeds are transmitted by Ladegast and Franz Liszt.

These registrations involve almost exclusively passages for one manual where gedeckts and flutes at 16' pitch are included, sometimes brightened up by a few 4' flutes, whereby the free reeds impart a harmonium-like timbre to the whole. Playing solo melodies appears not to have been the reason-to-be of the free reeds.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 313-322]


Alexander Fiseisky

History of the Organ in Latvia

The first documented reference to organs in the Baltics dates from 1329: in the small towns of Paistu (Paisten) and Helme (Helmet) (northern Livonia, now Estonia). The church of St Catherine in Riga was known to have an organ in 1392. Documents of the 14th and 15th centuries describe organs, mostly in the large churches of Riga. The first churches to be converted to Protestantism, in 1522, were those of St Jakobi and St Peter in Riga. The latter had received in 1520 a new organ built by Balthasar Zcineken, the first organ builder in Latvia known by name. This organ replaced the older one, which had existed since 1465. After the great fire of 1547 which destroyed the organ in Riga Cathedral, a new instrument was built by Jacob Rab(e) (d. 1609), an organ builder from Lübeck who established his workshop there in 1598. In the Duchy of Courland there existed traceable organs before 1600 in the following churches: Holy Trinity in Jelgava (Mitau), 1586; St Catharine in Kuldiga (Goldingen), 1593; The Church of the Holy Spirit in Bauska (Bauske), 1595.

In the 17th century Moritz (Mauritius) Wendt, who lived in Riga from 1608 to 1633, made a positive organ for Grobina (Grobin). He also received some orders from Königsberg (1622) and Danzig (1623). In 1609 he was given the task of renovating the organ in the church of Kuldiga, but, as by 1611 he had failed to fulfil this commision, another organ builder was engaged: Johannes Pauli (Paulus). The latter worked in Riga in 1611-1614, in 1630-1633 (new organ in the church of St Johann), and in 1642. In January 1642 Jakob Wendt, the son of Moritz Wendt, finished a new organ in Jelgava.

At the beginning of the 18th century a new style in art, Courland baroque, appeared in the cultural life of Latvia, first in evidence in Courland which maintained close contacts with Germany, Holland, and Poland. An important role in establishing this new style was played by the workshop of Nikolass Sefrenss "the younger" (1662-1710). Here the organ case for the church of Ugale (Ugahlen) was built by the wood carver Michael Marquardt. The instrument itself (1697-1701, II/P/28, featuring a Rückpositiv), the oldest organ in the Baltics still preserved in its original form, was built by Cornelius Rhaneus (1671-1719) from Kuldiga. Rhaneus also built organs for the castle chapel in Jelgava (1695-97), a church in Lestene (1707-08), and the church of St Catharine in Kuldiga, 1712-15. At that time, after Riga, Kuldiga became the second centre for organ building in Latvia. The following organ builders worked there: Mal. H. Erasmus, 1694-1744; Albrecht Jordan (b. 1689), 1746-1772; Paul Frölich (1720-1775) from Frauenburg (East Prussia) 1758-1775. Gabriel Julius Mosengel (Moosengel), the son of the famous organ builder Johann Josua Mosengel (1663-1731) from Königsberg, also worked there from 1719 to 1730. In 1786 the church of Edole received a richly decorated organ by Christoph Wilhelm Braweleit (Braveleit) (1752-1796) from Labiau (East Prussia), a pupil of Adam Gottlob Casparini (1715-1788). The organ builder Johann Heinrich Joachim (1696-1762) from Schafstädt (Thuringia), who settled in Jelgava, built new instruments in the church of St Gertrude in Riga (1753) and in the church of St Anna in Jelgava (1755). His most important work was the organ in the church of The Holy Trinity in Liepaja (1758, 36 stops), which he was not able to finish, because of increasing deafness from 1753. Gottfried Clossen (Kloss, Klossen, Kloos, d. 1740), from Danzig, built an organ in the church of St Peter in Riga (1728-1731, 1734, III/P/43).

The most famous organ builder in the Baltics in the 18th century was Heinrich Andreas Contius (1708-1792) from Halle a. d. Saale. He constructed an organ in the church of St Jakobi in Riga (1760/61, II/P/25; the case is preserved). At the suggestion of the organist of Riga Cathedral, Johann Kristian Zimmermann, he enlarged the organ there in 1773-76 by adding two stops to it: a Fagott 8' in the Oberwerk and an Untersatz 32' in the Pedal. He also extended the right and left hand cases, constructed new bellows, and renovated the Positive organ of the Cathedral school. In 1773-1779 he worked in The Holy Trinity church in Liepaja, where he constructed within the existing case a new instrument (II/P/38). Here he began working with his son in law Johann Andreas Stein (1752-1821), who came from a family of organ builders from Augsburg. On the occasion of constructing the organ in the church of St Simonis in Valmiera (1779-1780), they founded a workshop there from which the organ for the Reformed Church in Riga (II/P/14) came in 1783. Stein also built new organs in the churches of St Johann in Cesis (1786-1787) and Evele (Wohlfahrt, 1788). At the end of the century he established his own workshop in Pärnu in Estonia. In the instruments of Contius, features of a new style are noticeable - a Rückpositiv was not used, and the decoration became more restrained.

Around 1800 domestic organ builders began to appear. At first they were self-taught, mainly constructing positives for private residences and schools. Born about 1743, Theodor Tiedemann worked from 1778 to 1806 in Riga; from 1807 to 1835 his son Johann Theodor Tiedemann was active in Courland, and later in Lithuania. In the period from the middle of the 19th century up to the First World War, the art of organ building in Latvia reached its zenith. A large number of positive organs, very often built by self-taught peasants, appeared in the country districts. Besides positive organs, which continued to be the type of instrument most in demand, many new church organs also appeared. For example, Johann Christoph Christien (who worked from 1810 to 1839) is known to have already built 37 new organs in Katlakalns (Katlekaln) near Riga before 1831. From the 1840s, in addition to Riga, Liepaja also developed as a centre of organ building. Karl Herrmann (1807-1868) moved to Liepaja from St Petersburg, where he had worked as an organist. In 1830-1835 he constructed instruments in Kandava (Kandau), in 1836-1843 in Dobele, and in 1844-1868 in Liepaja. Altogether he produced about 80 church organs and more than 50 positive organs, of much variety in both construction and sound.

His son and successor Karl Alexander Herrmann (1847-1928), after installing an instrument in the church of Jesus in St Petersburg in 1877, stayed in that city from 1878 until 1893. Father and son enlarged the organ in the church of The Holy Trinity in Liepaja to 77 stops on 4 manuals and pedals during the period 1844 to 1874 while the nephew of Karl Herrmann, Karl J. Herrmann, worked in Jelgava from 1863 to 1883.

August Martin (1808-1892) from Dachwig (Thuringia) worked in Riga from 1837. He is known to have built about 67 church and 19 school organs in the Baltics, Russia, and Poland during 1840-1885. His largest instrument, originally built for the Old Church of St Gertrude in Riga (1867-1876, III/P/31), was removed in 1906 to the New Church of St Gertrude in that city. His son Emil Martin (1848-1922), who worked for four years under Friedrich Ladegast, installed the instrument in the Catholic church of St Jacob in Riga (1913, II/P/35, Opus 322). Friedrich Weissenborn from Thuringia, who lived in Riga, Krustpils, and Jekabpils (Jakobstadt), produced 85 organs in Latvia and Lithuania during the period 1865-1894.

From the middle of the 19th century the large firms in Germany dominated Latvia: Friedrich Ladegast (five organs, the most sizeable being that in the church of St Simonis in Valmiera, 1885-1886, III/P/33); Barnim Grüneberg from Stettin (Liepaja, Holy Trinity church, 1884-1885, IV/P/130, to this day the largest tracker action organ in the world); G. F. Steinmeyer & Co. (Jaunpiebalga, 1914, Opus 1200, II/P/24); W. Sauer (1882-1906, ten organs, including the Old Church of St Gertrude, Riga, 1906, III/P/45); E. F. Walcker & Co. (1882-1913 and 1937, 25 organs altogether, including Riga Cathedral, 1882-1883, Opus 413, IV/P/124). The second important centre of the organ world in Latvia continued to be Jelgava. There were both German and Latvian churches there. In the German Church of The Holy Trinity the instrument (II/P/26) by Johann Friedrich Schulze (1793-1858) of Paulinzella was in use from 1850. The most famous Latvian organ builder over the end of the century was Martins Kreslins (Martin Kresling, d. 1911) from Jekabpils, who built about 130-140 organs and harmoniums. Some of his instruments still exist today; for example, in Bauska (1891, III/P/36), in Araisi (1904, II/P/15), in the church of Usma (1879, II/6) (the church was transferred to the holdings of the Ethnographical Museum in 1936). Another creative figure both as organist and builder, Janis Betins, undertook many experiments in the art of organ building.

Between the two World Wars Latvian cultural life flourished. At that time Latvian organ builders, as well as Herbert Kolbe (b. 1887) from Germany, built mostly small instruments. In addition to them there was August Terkmann from Estonia, who built an organ (II/P/16) for the Lutheran church of St Anna in Kuldiga in 1927, and Waclaw Biernacki from Poland for Liksna II/P/27+1 borrowed stop) in 1931. The latter organ was considered to be one of the best instruments in Lattgalen. The last organ of E. F. Walcker & Co in Latvia was erected in the concert hall of Riga University in 1937 (Opus 2544, III/P/59+11 borrowed stops).

Between 1940 and 1991, just as in the other territories of the Former Soviet Union, many organs (approximately 80) were destroyed. Nevertheless, the Sauer organ (II/P/17) was installed in the Latvian Conservatoire in 1973, and the Walcker organ in Riga Cathedral was restored twice, first by VEB Eule Orgelbau Bautzen (1961-62) and then by D. A. Flentrop (1982-84). This organ had an enormous role in the cultural life of the USSR, being a kind of flagship in the organ landscape of the whole country. Finally, as a fitting tribute to the long developmental path of the organ and its music in Latvia, the Latvian Association of Organists and Organ Builders was established in Riga in March 1998.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 11-36]


Werner Götz

The Chamber Organ of Georg Hacker (ca. 1580) in the Benedictine Abbey Kremsmünster

In the "Steinsaal" of the Benedictine Abbey Kremsmünster stands a positive organ about which not very much is known other than that it was built around 1580 by Georg Hacker. This unique instrument is highly interesting not only for its elegant appearance but above all due to its technical construction. It comprises two manuals. The upper manual has the range C - d¹ and serves as the bass manual. The lower manual (discant) has a keyboard range of c¹ - d³. The bass manual has the stops Holzregal 8' and Holzcoppel 4'. The discant manual contains Zinnregal 8', Principal 4' and Octave 2'. Because the discant can be coupled to the bass manual, the result for the bass range is a double octave coupler and thus the option of full organ: Holzregal 8', Holzcoppel 4', Zinnregal 2', Principal 1', Octave 1/2' . The positive is also equipped with the special effect stops Dudelsackquinte C + G, Dudelsackquinte D + A, Kuckuck (g², e²), Borduntrompete C and Vogelgesang (two pipes immersed in a vessel of water).

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 79-98]


Andreas Hahn

The G. F. Jehmlich organ in the evangelical city church of Lauenstein (Erzgebirge): History, Restoration, Destruction.

The organ of the evangelical church St. Maria and Laurentin in Lauenstein (II/19) was built by Gotthelf Friedrich Jemlich in 1817/18 as his third instrument, dedicated 24 January 1819. It was his first new organ in Saxony after previously working in Bohemia.

In 1833 Johann Gotthold Jehmlich tuned the organ a quarter tone higher and in 1896 moved it backwards about a meter, whereby the three wedgebellows were turned 90 degrees and the organ case changed. The prospect pipes were painted with flame and flower patterns, and presumably at this point, the 1' Sifflöte was replaced by an 8' Aeoline. The prospect escaped being requisitioned for tin in the first world war and when the firm Jehmlich restored the instrument in 2000, the Aeoline was replaced by a (new) Sifflöte 1'.

In July 2003 the organ burned up, presumably because an animal caused a short circuit in the electrical apparatus. Nothing remained except the bellows and a part of the pedal; these elements will be integrated into the planned reconstruction.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 239-274]


Gisela Jaacks

Arp Schnitger and the Hamburg Guilds

Organ builders had an unusual status within the craft guilds because they needed to work with various materials and many different kinds of tools, the use of which according to the guild laws of the late middle ages and early modern era were reserved for only certain workshops. The craftsmen who worked with wood and metal at this time in Hamburg belonged to the so-called "closed guilds", which reduced even further the number of companies who were permitted to do such work.

Since the organ builders could not become members of these guilds, they either had to make use of the master craftsmen from the guilds or take the risk of persecution or sanctions. Arp Schnitger appears to have done a good job of creating an alliance with the Hamburg guilds, who jealously guarded their prerogatives. Encroachments by master craftsmen on his workshop (which were experienced by some of his colleagues) do not appear in the archival sources. In addition he was politically savvy enough to secure special privileges from the princes who ruled in the territories surrounding Hamburg. Such privileges ensured protection for organ building in these regions.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 275-282]


Michael Gerhard Kaufmann

The Political Symbolism of the Organ in the Third Reich

In Germany during the Third Reich the organ experienced a rapid rise in use as a political instrument due to a massive promotional campaign by the organizations of the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP). As early as the 1920's there existed so-called "heroic organs" (built in memory of fallen soldiers from the First World War) which were incorporated as a "consecrating" element into nationalistic celebrations by those in intellectual circles influenced by the concept of the "Volk" [people]. After the Nazis siezed power in 1933 several so-called "celebration organs" were built, based on the examples from the previous decade. They served like no other musical instrument to represent the ideal of a "people's community" (seen as a classless society based on military values) in the pseudo-religious rituals of the party organizations. After the collapse of the regime in 1945, the tarnished history of the organ over the previous twelve years was surpressed for decades, with the result that a critical evaluation of this period began to take place only starting in the mid 1980's.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 401-409]


Thomas Lipski

Concert hall organs in Germany up to the first half of the 20th century and their architectural integration.

In Germany concert hall organs were built from the second third of the 19th century onwards, and four kinds of placement in the room are to be noted:

1. The organ stands free on the orchestra podium, in front of the wall.
2. The organ stands in a nitch in the wall behind the podium.
3. The entire wall behind the podium is one with the organ prospect.
4. The organ is invisible in chambers.


1. Hamburg, Tonhalle (Peter Tappe, 1845, the first concerthall organ in Germany)
2. Leipzig, Gewandhaus (Walcker, 1884)
3. Hamburg, Musikhalle (Walcker, 1908) Magdeburg, Stadthalle (Sauer, 1928)
4. Gelsenkirchen, Hans-Sachs-Haus (Walcker, 1927)

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 283-298]


Johannes Reichel

The Organs of the Salvatorkirche at Kürbitz in Vogtland

The Salvatorkirche at Kürbitz in Vogtland (Saxony) contains a baroque organ facade from the year 1720. It is a work of the organ builder Johann Peter Penick from Zwickau in Saxony, who made it together with the original organ. The carving work was done by Johann Nicol Knoll and the colors of the facade were applied by Heinrich Matheus Loh, both from Hof in Upper Franconia. In the year 1880 the organ was moved from its original location in the south gallery to a newly created opening in the church tower. 1907 saw the disassembly of this instrument by Reinhard Schmeisser from Rochlitz and the construction of a new organ with pneumatic action. The present organ, which stands behind the slightly altered facade, was built in 1977 by the firm Jehmlich-Orgelbau Dresden.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 189-238]


Alfred Reichling

Organ Tones Beneath the Swastika.
Celebrations - Celebration Halls - Celebration Organs

A prominent feature of National Socialism was the propensity for choreographed political celebrations and - almost inextricably bound together with these events - the need for the creation of rituals. Around the mid-1930s the desire for specially designed convention halls (complete with organs) began to be expressed publicly. Among the more zealous advocates for the inclusion of organs in National Socialist celebrations were Gotthold Frotscher, Herbert Haag, Wolfgang Auler and Wolfgang Stumme. One of their mouthpieces was the periodical "Musik in Jugend und Volk" (from November 1937). Political celebrations were supposed to evoke a strong emotional reaction from the participants, and, in the role of a pseudo-religious cult, foster allegiance to National Socialism via the feelings rather than the intellect. The organ and its powerful sound were intended to play an important function in this larger context. It would accompany the national songs. In addition, specially composed pieces of "celebration music" would be written in order to avoid reliance on organ repetoire as used in the churches. At the same time, the construction of positives and chamber organs was promoted. They were to be used for the performance of secular chamber music, e.g. dances or arrangements of songs from the Renaissance and Baroque periods as well as new compositions for chamber organ.

In the year 1936 the firms Walcker and Sauer built an organ with 220 stops in the record time of six months for the 180 m long "Luitpoldhalle" in Nuremberg. In the same year Bayreuth was the recipient of two celebration organs: the three-manual Steimeyer organ for the "House of German Education" and the four-manual Walcker organ for the "Ludwig-Siebert-Halle". These three instruments did not survive the Second World War, as was the case with most of the other organs built for political purposes during this time.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 411-444]


Marc Schaefer

Hans Süss and the organ of the Straßburger Munster, 1506-16

Hans Süss rebuilt the Friedrich Krebs organ (1489-91) in the Dom in 1509-11 according to then newer ideas. The contract, concluded 24 September 1507, gives information on the work which was tested by Arnolt Schlick. Hans Süss made some repair already in 1516. His rebuild represents an important step in the development from the gothic to the renaissance organ.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 65-78]


Winfried Schlepphorst

History and Restoration of the Organ in Marienfeld (Westphalia)

Behind the most splendid organ facade in Westphalia, the organ at the former Cistercian monastery Marienfeld, which was built by Johann Patroclus Möller from Lippstadt between the years 1745-51 and underwent damaging alterations done by Randebrock (1883-84) and Fleiter (1924-25), contains quite a multi-layered collection of original pipes. Wind chests, actions, bellows and a portion of the pipes were lost during the incursions of the 19th and 20th centuries. After a restoration by Breil (1962-63), the instrument was technically updated according to principles of historical preservation during a much needed renovation by the firm Kreienbrink in the years 1995-99. It was also outfitted with a wedge bellows of the type used by Möller. This work made it possible to avoid a more rigorous reconstruction. The stops from the 17th and 18th centuries along with the ranks from Breil and Kreienbrink constitute a rich resource upon which to draw. The many layers of this stop list together create a surprisingly unified tonal picture.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 143-154]


Hans Schmidt-Mannheim

The Peter Heroldt organ in Buttstädt: on the trail of Johann Tobias and Johann Ludwig Krebs.

The contract of 1696 shows for this organ a pedal disposition which was rather usual in Thuringia, with two 16' registers stood a 2' reed and a 1' labial; the Pedal was to have 30 notes (C - f¹). Heroldt died before the organ could be completed, it was finished by the organbuilder Fincker in 1701. In 1724 Johann Gottfried Walther from neighboring Weimar examined the instrument thoroughly, whereby he showed himself to be a capable organ specialist. Organist in Buttstädt was the composer Johann Tobias Krebs, father of Johann Sebastian Bach student Johann Ludwig Krebs. In the later years the organ was again and again reworked according to modern modes. A more or less authentic reconstruction of the original status was occasioned by Erhard Mauersberger in 1933, and this disposition remains today, though organ and church have tremendously suffered from the effects of the postwar time and lack of funds for repairs.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 155-188]


Albrecht Schneider / Andreas Beurmann / Richard von Busch / Lüder Schmidt / Eberhard Lauer

Historical organ tunings considered in regard of sound properties

Discussions concerning historical organ tunings and temperaments in most cases relate to documents such as books on music theory and organology written by authorities such as Werckmeister, Adlung, etc. Also, works of music have been analyzed in regard of keys, chord and interval structure in order to determine the tuning system the respective composer probably had in mind when writing a particular piece. Notwithstanding the usefulness of such sources, we believe an empirical approach based on acoustics and psychoacoustics should be taken as well. The main reason is that most discussions on tunings and temperaments do not consider actual properties of musical sound, and instead adhere to a one-dimensional model according to which the pitches of a musical scale are reduced to their fundamental frequencies. A particular tuning thereby is viewed "horizontally" as a series of fundamental frequencies. The linear distances between such frequencies then can be calculated and expressed in cents. However, in regard of the organ the vertical dimension of tuning which relates to the spectral properties of sounds radiated from single pipes as well as from mixture and other stops in total, no doubt is essential since the organ acoustically is conceived so as to combine and radiate very many harmonic partials. These aspects are investigated in our paper by means of digital sound analysis in order to demonstrate that a one-dimensional, purely "horizontal" view of tunings is inadequate. Rather, discussions of tunings and temperaments should take into account properties of actual sound as well as acoustic and psychoacoustic effects resulting from the interaction of "horizontal" and "vertical" parameters of tuning.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 323-346]


Joachim Walter

The 1854 Schulze organ of St. Marien in Lübeck and its free reeds: a source for the art of registration in the 19th century.

Lübecks St. Marien got her Schulze organ with 4 manuals and Pedal and 78 stops in 1854. For this instrument two organists who presided over it left detailed registrations behind: Hermann Jimmerthal (1809-1886) and Karl Lichtwark (1859-1931). Those registrations where reeds are indicated, show that:

Reed registrations in general were clearly distinguished from labial registrations, mostly to give certain musical textures and forms emphasis;
Jimmerthals transcription registrations do not correspond automatically to certain orchestra instruments in the original;
Every reed registration, even the Aeoline 8' (free reed), was "covered" by 8' flutes;
The soft reeds (Aeoline 8' or Clarinette 8' - normal construction) were used only in middle and upper registers;
The free reed Aeoline 8' was, in all eight surviving registrations, only used where several voices are in play, whether only one manual, or also a solo voice on a second manual, are in question;
The free reed Aeoline 8' is only used in textures with moderate tempo;
Lichtwark's registrations with the free reed Aeoline 8' are to be understood as fine tone shadings in the late romantic sense.

[Acta Organologica 28, 2004, 299-312]