Dr. Jeannine Jordan, Concert Organist

Posts tagged ‘Prelude and Fugue in E flat major BWV 552’

A Silbermann in Freiberg

The next stop on our 2012 performance tour found us in the town of Freiberg, Germany.  Founded in 1186 the town was heralded for its significance in the mining industry for many centuries.  Today the historic old town is a charming area of restored Renaissance and Baroque edifices, including the Dom Kirche and the St. Petrikirche.

It was at the St. Petrikirche on the recently restored Gottfried Silbermann organ where I played the final concert of our tour.  Performing on this historic organ, an instrument built by Silbermann in 1735, for my final program of the tour was a unique privilege and joy.   The organ is a superb example of the work of the master organ builder, Gottfried Silbermann. It is an amazing two manual and pedal instrument with 32 registers including a sonorous 16′ principal on the Hauptwerk and tremendous reeds in the pedal. The organ was restored to its original condition in 2007.

I decided to program pieces that could have been played on the Silbermann when it was new in 1735 — pieces by Scheidt, Bruhns, Telemann, and JS Bach.  Naturally, the music fit the instrument superbly.  In addition, the church had the perfect 7 second reverberation I have ever heard. The glorious sounds of the final E-Flat chord of Bach’s St. Anne fugue simply drifted into space, filling every inch of this awesome church.  Heavenly sounds in a heavenly place.

(Dr. Jeannine Jordan, concert organist and with David Jordan, creator and performer of the organ and media event, Bach and Sons.)


The Bach Wedding Church in Dornheim

On 17th October 1707 a wedding party made its way from Arnstadt (Germany) to Dornheim, three kilometres away.  The betrothed couple was none other than Johann Sebastian Bach and his second cousin Maria Barbara Bach.  Young Bach’s friendship with the pastor of Dornheim, Johann Lorenz Stauber, was doubtless the main reason for choosing the little village church for this happy occasion.  Despite numerous repairs Bach’s wedding church was by 1996 in such a desolate state that even demolition was considered.  At this point determined villagers got together with the aim of rescuing the building and providing for a comprehensive restoration.  Today thousands of visitors from Germany and all over the world come to see this now well known memorial to Bach.” (Juergen Frey of Dornheim.)

On August 20, 2012, I was privileged to present an organ concert in this lovely village church.  The program, “A Musical Tour of Bach’s Life”  included some of JS Bach’s best-known and well-loved compositions including the Toccata in d minor, various chorale preludes, several secular pieces, and the great St. Anne Fugue. The audience was delighted with this sampling of Bach’s great music while enjoying the lovely surroundings of this historic Bach wedding church.

The organ, in a lovely Baroque case, was built by Schoenefeld in 1996. It is a two manual and pedal tracker instrument of 19 stops.

Our hosts for our stay in the village of Dornheim were Rosemarie and Juergen Frey, two of those determined villagers who rescued this now famous and well-loved Bach landmark.

(Dr. Jeannine Jordan, concert organist and with David Jordan, creator and performer of the organ and media event, Bach and Sons.)


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