Bruhns & Scheidemann: Organ works

Bine Bryndorf (Roskilde cathedral organ)
79:18
Da Capo 6.220636

The organ in Denmark’s Roskilde Cathedral is celebrated in this recording of music by two composers from the Danish/German region of Schleswig-Holstein. Built by the Dutch builder Hermann Raphaelis in 1554 and rebuilt a hundred years later to the design of Gregor Mülisch, the organ was much altered over the succeeding centuries before being restored to its baroque state in the 1980s. The sleevenotes refer to Scheidemann and Bruhns as, essentially, the alpha and omega of the great 17th-century North German organ tradition which grew out of the music of Sweelinck and, of course, flowered particularly in Buxtehude who is not represented here. The contrast between the two composers is very clearly brought out by Danish organist Bine Byrndorf who exploits the registrational possibilities of this historic organ extremely well. There are lots of contrapuntal climaxes in the Scheidemann, and exciting echo effects and pedal solos in the Bruhns. The recording producer has been particularly successful in capturing the range of stops, especially the pedal, with great clarity and definition. This will be a must-have disc for lovers of early organ music but will appeal to anyone wanting a lively introduction to one of the instrument’s great creative periods.

Noel O’Regan