Robert Knupp at MS College's Provine Chapel, Jan 11, 2017.
Organ equipped with Hauptwerk.

Be sure to read the paragraph  "About Hauptwerk"  at the end of
the review; it contains a link you may use to hear the recital.

Review by Amy Lauren Jones, ©2017.

1) Kuhnau - Prelude & Fugue in B Flat Major
Johann Kuhnau (1660-1722)
St. Clement Church, Lędziny, Poland
Organ by Carl Volkamnn (1888)

Johann Kuhnau established a reputation in Germany as a polymath;
that is, an expert in multiple fields. Though best known today 
for his musical compositions, Kuhnau also wrote novels and worked 
as a lawyer, translator, and music theorist. For 21 years, he 
occupied the post of Thomaskantor in Leipzig. There, he wrote 
operas, masses, and other large-scale vocal works mostly lost 
to history. Some of his existing works include programmatic 
keyboard sonatas published in 1700, each of which portrays a 
particular Biblical narrative.

Kuhnau also distinguished himself by transferring the chamber 
sonata to the clavier. The Prelude and Fugue in B Flat Major 
appeared in Kuhnau's "New Clavier Exercises." Johann Sebastian 
Bach, on whom Kuhnau's music undoubtedly had some influence, 
succeeded Kuhnau as Thomaskantor after his death in 1722. 

The sample set for this piece draws on a Polish town located in 
the Upper Silesian Industrial Region.The Parish of Lędziny, one
of the oldest on Upper Silesia, features a church built in 1769.
The church's organ underwent comprehensive renovations in 
1999-2000 that maintained its mechanical key and stop action. 
Carl Volkamnn developed this set in 2006.

2) Bruhns - Prelude in e Minor
Nicolaus Bruhns (1665-1697)
Melzer Chamber Music Hall, Warsaw, Poland
Organ by Walcker (1993)

A child prodigy, Nicolaus Bruhns studied under Dietrich Buxtehude 
in Lübeck, Germany.  Buxtehude became so impressed with Bruhns'
talents and progress as to consider him a stellar pupil. At 
Buxtehude's recommendation, Bruhns worked as organist and violinist 
in Copenhagen. Later, he received the position of organist of the 
Stadtkirche in Husum, where he worked for the remainder of his life.
This piece by Nicolaus Bruhns received the nickname "The Great" for 
its massive musical requirements, and scholars have hailed it as 
one of the greatest works of the North German organ tradition.

Unfortunately, little of Bruhns' music survives today, with only 12 
vocal pieces and 5 organ pieces. The existing three sacred madrigal 
cantatas demonstrate a noticable progression toward the music of 
the next century, such as the music of J.S. Bach. Though C.P.E. Bach
claimed that his father admired and studied Bruhns' music, scholars 
have yet to trace any direct influence.

The sample organ for this piece was created by Piotr Grabowski as
part of his thesis for the The Fryderyk Chopin University of Music 
in Warsaw, Poland. For this thesis, he also developed a sample set 
for another Polish organ in Dluga Kościelna. 

3) Bach - Prelude & Fugue in d Minor (BWV#538 - the "Dorian")
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Stadtkirche, Grosshartmansdorf, Germany
Organ by Silbermann (1741)

This organ piece by J.S. Bach commonly receives the nickname "Dorian",
referring to the piece's lack of key signature and assumed Dorian 
modality. Like Bach's Fantasia and Fugue in C minor, BWV 562, it is 
monothematic, or containing a motif that continues through the end of 
the piece. This theme appears at the opening as a quick sixteenth-note 
pattern, often elaborated during the piece. The piece also includes 
notated manual changes written in by Bach himself, a rare practice 
in his music.

The complex fugue in D minor features a subject with syncopations and 
three leaps of a perfect fourth. Only the final four bars of the piece 
break the strict contrapuntal development with several climactic chords.
The fugue also bears notable similarity to the fugue of BWV 540 with
an alla breve time signature, subjects with syncopated minims and 
semibreves, extended chromatics, harmonic suspensions, and unbroken 
succession of subjects and answers. Bach worked in Weimar between 1708 
and 1717, during which he composed the "Dorian" in addition to many 
other significant organ works.

Among Germany's historic organs, Gottfried Silbermann's thirty-one 
instruments mostly remain in near-original condition. Gottfried 
Silbermann (1683-1753) and J.S. Bach were contemporaries, colleagues, 
and friends. The organ sampled here is located in Großhartmannsdorf, 
Germany, and was sampled by Peter Ewers for his Gigastudio pipe organ 
series "Symphonic Organ Libraries" in 2001.

4) Mendelssohn - Organ Sonata V
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1809-1847)
Andante-Andante Con Moto-Allegro Maestoso
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Chicago, Illinois
Organ by EM Skinner (1928)

Felix Mendelssohn's six Organ Sonatas, Op. 65, received publication in 
1845. Mendelssohn's best compositional qualities are demonstrated in the 
organ sonatas, commissioned as a "set of voluntaries" by the English 
publishers Coventry and Hollier in 1844. Biographer Eric Werner wrote
"Next to Bach's works, Mendelssohn's Organ Sonatas belong to the 
required repertory of all organists.

Throughout his lifetime, Mendelssohn performed many well-received 
organ recitals across Europe. However, he refused to perform this set 
of sonatas when invited to do so at the Birmingham Festival of 1846, 
due to the sonatas' extensive use of the pedals. English organs had
very poorly developed pedal sections (if any); Mendelssohn was so
popular, however, that he managed to have at least one English organ 
outfitted with a German-style pedal division. One wonders what Handel's
organ concertos would have been like if the organs available to him in
England had included well-developed pedal divisions - he certainly did
have a good ear for contrapuntal bass lines (think of the final chorus
"Amen" in "The Messiah").

Termed "The American Classic", the Grand Organ of Our Lady of Mount 
Carmel in Chicago, Illinois is a rare Skinner organ that remains nearly
entirely in its original state. Two sample sets for this historic 
instrument are available for organists. One includes dry pipe samples 
sans acoustics, while the other maintains the original acoustics of the 
church.

5) Utterbeck - Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
setting by Joe Utterback (b. 1944)
Redford Theater, Detroit, Michigan
Organ by Barton (1928)

Joe Utterback has performed on the American jazz scene for more than 
fifty years, with European and American tours in addition to long-term 
gigs in the jazz centers of Kansas City, San Francisco, St. Louis, and 
presently New York City. Recent annual engagements include the Empire 
State Building Christmas entertainment and Tony Awards Galas. 

The Kansas-born musician's childhood in Pentecostal circles fostered 
his gospel style. Utterback also draws inspiration from romantic and 
impressionist piano traditions. He holds degrees in classical piano 
performance from Wichita State University and a Doctor of Musical Arts 
degree from the University of Kansas. In addition to leading workshops 
at national and regional conferences of organizations such as College 
Music Society, National Federation of Music Clubs, and the American 
Guild of Organists, Utterback has taught for more than twenty years 
at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. Since 1996, he has served 
as Director of Music/Organist at the First Congregational Church, 
Stratford, CT.

The virtual Barton Theatre Organ project, begun by the members of the 
VTPO Yahoo Group, aimed to electronically recreate the Barton Theatre 
Organ of the Redford Theatre in Detroit, Michigan. Group members Joe 
Hardy and Lynn Walls recorded samples for this instrument set. Since 
opening on January 27, 1928, the Redford Theatre has served as an 
entertainment center in Metro Detroit.

6) Ertle - Prelude & Fugue in E major
Warren Ertle (b. 1993)-World Premiere
Concordia University, Irvine, California
Organ by Casavant (1988)

Warren Ertle is a composer soon to be based in Boston, Massachusetts, 
where he will pursue a Master's in composition at The Boston 
Conservatory. Born and raised in central Mississippi, he earned B.Mus.
in music composition from Mississippi College  (with Ben Williams) and
studied organ with Robert Knupp. A pianist and percussionist for the 
41st Army Band, Ertle has also performed with The Troopers Drum & Bugle 
Corps (2011) and The Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps (2012-2014). The Jackson
Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra, The Mississippi College Symphonic Winds, 
The Verismo Trio, Hinds Community College Wind Ensemble, and the
percussionists Jason Mathena and Joe Kulick have performed Ertle's 
compositions.

The organ, a Casavant Frères Ltée. Opus 3640, was built in 1988. The 
organ is situated at the front of the room with some exposed pipes and
a traditional movable console with roll top. The instrument was sampled 
by CLR Resources, which develops sample sets for American Classic organs. 

7)Tournemire - Chorale-Improvisation on "Victimae Paschali Laudes" 
Charles Tournemire(1870-1939)
Our Lady of the Assumption, Metz, France
Organ by Cavaille-Coll (1903)

During the lifetime of Charles Tournemire, organ improvisation was a 
necessary skill among French organists, as it remains today. 
Improvisation was taught at many conservatories throughout Europe, 
and many Catholic organists considered the tool indispensable. Maurice 
Duruflé's organ transcription of Tournemire's improvisation on the 
plainsong theme "Victimae Paschali" has been recorded by Marie-Madeleine 
Duruflé, in addition to many other virtuoso performers.

Many prominent organists, including Charles Tournemire and Marcel Dupré, 
wrote method books on improvisation. In 1930-31, Charles Tournemire 
recorded five improvisations on acetate discs. Although Tournemire 
often refused requests to transcribe and publish the improvisations he 
recorded, his pupil Duruflé did transcribe and publish the well-known 
set of Five Improvisations in 1958. Despite poor audio quality and many 
late nights in which Duruflé slowed the record to half-speed in an effort
to extricate complex passages, Duruflé did an admirable job of 
transcribing pieces such as "Victimae Paschali Laudes" into a 
written score suitable for performance.

Located in Metz, France, the Cavaillé-Coll organ of Notre Dame suits 
the French-Romantic works of Widor, Franck, Dupré and other masters. 
The set maintains the original Cavaillé-Coll church acoustics and 
samples from every pipe. A virtual extended edition also features 
ten additional stops.

About Hauptwerk: Have you ever enjoyed listening to a CD of an organ 
that Bach may have played? If so you may be surprised to know you can 
have a similar experience today, with a live and local performance.
     
A program called Hauptwerk makes this possible. In the first step, a 
pipe organ is  digitally recorded note-for-note, pipe-by-pipe. Then 
the organ is configured on Hauptwerk using the same stoplist as the 
original organ, and then the computer is attached to a MIDI ready 
organ console. The output of sound comes directly from the computer 
and can be heard over headphones, small speakers, or even a Public 
Address system. The result is that the recorded pipe organ is re-
created digitally, in essence a virtual reproduction stop-for-stop 
of the original pipe organ. 
     
A computer with Hauptwerk was purchased for use in MC's Provine Chapel, 
and organ professor Robert Knupp played a recital there last January. 
His program included 7 pieces, each one on sounds from a different 
organ; the oldest from 1741 and the most recent from 1993. So far as 
we know this is the only Hauptwerk system in a public space in 
Mississippi.
     
Dr. Knupp's recital was recorded and is available online.

To hear the recital, Click Here.