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Celebrating the pipe organ, the King of Instruments

1746 Hildebrandt organ at Saint Wenzel Church, Naumburg, Germany

Bach’s Royal Instruments

Although we’ll never be able to find a definitive Bach organ, we do know where he played and the sorts of instruments which influenced him. On this week’s show, we’ll visit the church in Arnstadt, Bach’s first important job, drop in at the Castle Church in Lahm, where he helped a cousin with the organ design, and at Altenburg Palace where, later, his best pupil, Krebs, was employed. We’ll hear an instrument by Silbermann, who Bach respected but with whom he did not see eye-to-eye, also the new organ at Saint Thomas Church, Leipzig, modeled after one in Bach’s hometown, and the extraordinary Hildebrandt masterpiece in Naumburg, which we think Bach designed.

Bach traveled the countryside as Germany’s foremost recitalist, and we follow his footsteps to hear the sounds he knew and the organs which were important in his growth as an artist. Come with us to Arnstadt, Altenburg, Naumburg, Leipzig and Lahm, as we revisit history and celebrate Bach’s Royal Instruments.

Program Broadcast dates:


Music played in the program

J.S. BACH: Prelude in e, S. 548 –Dietrich Wagler (1714 Gottfried Silbermann/Freiberg Cathedral, Germany) Motette CD MOT 12701

JOHANN CHRISTOPH BACH: Aria and Variations –Ullrich Böhme (2000 Woehl/Thomaskirche, Leipzig, Germany) Querstand CD-0120

JOHANN BERNARD BACH: Passacaglia/Chaconne in B-flat –Wilhelm Krumbach (1731 Herbst/Schlosskirche, Lahm/Itzgrund, Germany) Teldec CD-92176

J.S. BACH: 4 Pieces in G: Praeludium, S. 568; 3 Neumeister Chorale-preludes: O Jesu, wie ist dein Gestalt, S. 1094; Was Gott tut, S. 1116; Wir Christenleut, S. 1090Gottfried Preller (1703 Wender/J.S. Bach Church, Arnstadt, Germany) Bach-Kirche 2000

JOHANN LUDWIG KREBS: Herzlich lieb hab ich dich –Felix Friedrich (1739 Trost/Altenburg Castle Chapel, Germany) Ars Vivendi CD-2100179

J.S. BACH: O Lamm Gottes unschuldig, S. 656 –Cristina Garcia Banegas (1755 Trost/Stadtkirche [Town Church], Waltershausen, Germany) Motette CD MOT 12391

J.S. BACH: Aria, Mein gläubiges Herze, from Cantata Number 68 –Dorothee Mields, soprano; Leipzig Consort. J.S. BACH: Kyrie, Gott Vater in Ewigkeit, S. 672 –Stefan Altner (1724 Hildebrandt/University of Leipzig Instrument Museum, Germany) Raumklang CD-2001

J.S. BACH: 2 Leipzig Chorale-preludes: Schmücke dich, O liebe Seele, S. 654; Komm heiliger Geist, Herre Gott, S. 651 –Robert Clark (1746 Hildebrandt/St. Wenzel Church, Naumburg, Germany) Calcante CD-041


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