Celebrating the pipe organ, the King of Instruments
1862 Cavaillé-Coll organ at Église Saint-Sulpice, Paris, France
1868 Cavaillé-Coll organ at Cathédrale Notre Dame, Paris, France
1890 Cavaillé-Coll organ at the Église Saint-Ouen, Rouen, France
1889 Cavaillé-Coll organ at Basilique Saint-Sernin, Toulouse, France
1988 Kleuker-Steinmeyer organ at Tonhalle, Zürich, Switzerland
1967 Walker organ at the Metropolitan Cathedral, Liverpool, England, UK
1929 Skinner organ at Woolsey Hall, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut
…composite performances of the most famous of all organ symphonies (by Charles-Marie Widor), and its somber companion-challenger (by Louis Vierne).
CHARLES-MARIE WIDOR: Symphony Number 5 in F, Opus 42:
1st movement, Allegro vivace, orchestral arrangement by Frank Stewart Adams –Zurich Symphony Orchestra, Daniel Schweizer, conductor; Ulrich Meldau (1988 Kleuker-Steinmeyer/Tonhalle, Zürich, Switzerland) Motette CD MOT 40241
Filler –CHARLES-MARIE WIDOR: Adagio (see above)
LOUIS VIERNE: Organ Symphony Number 5 in a, Opus 47
1st movement, Grave –Joseph Ripka (1927 Casavant Frères; 2001 Schantz/St. Andrew Lutheran, Mahtomedi, MN) Pipedreams Archive recorded September 23, 2007. Vierne played the inaugural recital on this instrument in its original home.
The aesthetic of the organ symphonies of Widor and Vierne was, in large part, shaped by the instruments known to the two composers, primarily the sonorous and innovative creations of master-builder Aristide Cavaillé-Coll (1811-1899), whose pipe organs are heard in several of today’s selections and whose 200th birthday anniversary is celebrated this year.
To mark the Cavaillé-Coll Bicentennial, and the 150th anniversary of his magnum opus organ at St. Sulpice in Paris, Fugue State Films will produce a high definition DVD/CD boxed set, available in 2012, the first ever full-length audio/video documentary about Cavaillé-Coll’s life and work. Click for more information.
In most of today’s recordings, the artists heard in individual movements have recorded the entire related work. Ben van Oosten, Charles Krigbaum, Jeremy Filsell, Martin Jean, and Pierre Cochereau have recorded the entire symphony cycles of both composers.
A complete concert performance of all five movements of Louis Vierne’s Fifth Symphony played by the prize-winning young American recitalist Joseph Ripka is available:
1st movement , Grave
2nd movement , Allegro molto marcato
3rd movement , Tempo di scherzo ma non troppo vivo
4th movement , Larghetto
5th movement , Final
It was recorded during a Vierne Symphony Marathon presented by the Twin Cities Chapter of the American Guild of Organists at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Mahtomedi, MN. You can also view Ripka’s performance of the Finale to this symphony in a YouTube video recorded at the Church of Saint Sulpice, Paris.