Dimension: 24.5 x 18.1 x 4.8 cm
||Handbuch Orgelmusik. Komponisten - Werke - Interpretation,
hrsg. von Rudolf Faber und Philip Hartmann.
||Kassel: Bärenreiter-Verlag /Stuttgart und Weimar:
Verlag J. B. Metzler, 2002. xv+712p; Hardback. Euro 64,90.
||3-7618-2003-8 (Bärenreiter); 3-476-01877-6 (Metzler)
Heinrich-Schütz-Allee 35, D-34131 Kassel, Germany.
||An easy-to-use comprehensive guide on the organ music from the 15th
century to the present day; contribution by 20 authors. Bach's works are
discussed on pp. 55-99.
||BWV 525-560, 562-66, 568-70, 572, 574-5, 578-9, 582,
588-90, 592-6, 601, 608, 615, 625, 633-4, 637, 639, [645-50], 651, 653-4,
660, 668-80, 686, 688, 696-9, 701, 703-4, 715, 718, 722, 726, 729, 732-3,
736, 738-9, 765-70, 802-5, 1090-1120; Anh.205/II 45.
||Organists and scholars, esp. student organists
||Encyclopaedic coverage of 418 composers of organ music and
While his works became the daily bread for many
organists, composers wrote pieces to pay homage to Bach’s legacy. The fugues
featuring the B-A-C-H motif are perhaps the best examples.
||Today we remember Bach primarily as the composer of countless
masterpieces. Many people of his time remembered him rather differently; he was
an awesome virtuoso organist. In the long and proud tradition of the German
school of organ playing, Bach became a legendary figure, as his organ works were
cherished by many generations of organists and were regarded among the finest
examples of art that demonstrate both the skill of the performers and the power
of instrument, the organ.
||Orgelmusik des 15. bis 18. Jahrhunderts
||Böhmen, Deutschland, England, Frankreich,
Italien, Niederlande, Portugal, Spanien
||Orgelmusik des 19. bis 20. Jahrhunderts
||Baltische Staaten, Belgien, Deutschland, Frankreich,
Großbritannien, GUS, Italien, Kanada, Niederlande, Österreich,
Polen, Rumänien, Schweiz, Skandinavische Länder, Tschechien,
||Neue Orgelmusik nach 1960
comprehensive, yet surprisingly
easy to use
This thick book is an encyclopaedia of organ composers and their major works
for this instrument: it features 418 composers who lived from the 15th century
to the present day. As you can see in the abridged table of contents shown on
the left, the entries are arranged systematically according to the period and
region. Each section has separate introduction, discussing the historical
background and the main feature of the organ of the period and its construction
(incl. list of stops), followed by a select list of bibliography, all of which
is clearly laid out and discussed concisely.
Twenty authors took part in this volume; the section of J. S. Bach (pp.
55-99) was written by Michael Kube, the author who wrote the section of
chorale-based organ music in the
Bach-Handbuch (1999), pp. 536-612. Considering the amount of information
already widely available elsewhere, it is not surprising to learn how small it
is that this section occupies in this book. The introduction for Bach’s organ
music takes up less than a page (excluding the list of editions) in which Kube
discusses just enough biographical information about who Bach is, e.g. who
influenced and taught Bach, what posts he held and where, and so on. If you need
more in-depth information, you will surely need to look up other books such as
Bach-Handbuch or Peter Williams’ monograph, Johann Sebastian Bachs
Orgelwerke (Mainz: Schott, 1996f).
Bach’s works are discussed briefly in BWV order, starting with Organ Trio (BWV
525). Each commentary begins with brief historical background, followed by some
salient structural and stylistic features of each composition. There is one
unique feature in this book that may be very handy for student organists who are
looking for what to study next: it gives the grade for technical difficulty
(1=very easy to 6=extremely difficult) and the approximate duration of each
piece. The length and nature of the commentary also reflect this category of
readership. For this reason, Bach scholars may find the level of discussion
somewhat wanting. But it is the wide coverage of other composers from whom Bach
received influence as well as those that he influenced that is most attractive.
For the literature of organ music in general, I have not yet seen a book that is
equally easy to use as this book.
One of the features lacking from this present edition is the index of
keywords. At the back there is an index of composers (Register) and for the
major composer there is a list of his works; but this does not give you who
wrote a piece on the theme of Bach, for example.
Published online on 31 May 2002