Monday, May 11, 2009

Cesar Franck - Complete Organ Works: Hans-Eberhard Ross

    Artist: Hans-Eberhard Ross (Goll-Organ of St. Martin, Memmingen, Germany)
    Album: Cesar Franck - Complete Organ Works 6 disc
    Released: 2005
    Label: Audite
    Catalog N°: 91.518-520
    Genre: Classical, Organ
    File Format: eac_iso_wv_cue_log covers

    Take the cat off the hook and throw out the phone – you won’t want to be disturbed for the next two and a half hours. Why? Because this is an organ collection like no other, magnificently played on the new Goll instrument at St Martin, Memmingen. And if you think you know your Franck be prepared for a surprise – these performances are nothing short of revelatory...
    ....This isn’t the first time the fabulous Goll organ has been committed to disc; Ross has recorded a mixed programme for IFO (IFO45), Ulfert Smidt has taped some Franck and Langlais for MDG (MDG 90614) and Jane Parker Smith plays an eclectic mix of pieces for Avie (AVI-34). I have yet to these but I’d be very surprised if they come even close to the sonic and musical splendour of this Audite release.
    And of course there are two more instalments in this series – Audite 91.519 and 91.520 – which, if Volume I is anything to go by, must make this the finest and most satisfying survey now before the public. One hesitates to use the word ‘great’ but in this case nothing else will do.

    Dan Morgan

    Preis für Memminger Kirchenmusikdirektor Hans-Eberhard Roß
    Gesamteinspielung der Orgelwerke Cesar Francks erhält den "Super sonic"
    Die Internationale Musikzeitschrift "pizzikato" hat die Einspielung des gesamten Orgelwerks von Cesar Frank (1822-1890) durch den Memminger Kirchenmusikdirektor Hans-Eberhard Roß mit der Verleihung des Preises "Super sonic" gewürdigt. Die weltweit erste Gesamteinspielung aller Orgel- und Harmoniumwerke des französischen Romantikers, die an der neuen Goll-Orgel der hostorischen Memminger Stadtkirche St. Martin, entstand, ist im Detmolder Label "audite" erschienen. Die sechs CDs werden unter dem Motto "Rendevous mit Cesar Frank" am 19. März in der St. Martinskirche der Öffentlichkeit vorgestellt.

    Cesar Franck - Complete Organ Works. Vol.1, 2disc. 257MB, 294MB, 42MB

    This initial volume in a series of double SACD sets represents the beginning of the complete organ works of Cesar Franck on CD for the first time. The series will include, naturally, the 12 major well-known works. In addition to these, there will eventually be at least 40 minutes of premiere recordings alongside the many smaller treasures from the repertoire. The works for harmonium will be available in their entirety in versions for organ, as will be two organ works discovered during the 1970s and 1980s; also new to the recording medium. Besides this aspect of completeness, the present production is marked by the special sound of the Goll Organ. Its warm, soft sound, resulting from widely constructed pipes, creates an unobtrusive power and fullness.

    This follow-up to Volume 1, subtitled Unrecognized Greatness, is a collection of works whose importance, until today, has mostly remained unrecognized. The collection was originally called Pieces posthumes pour Harmonium ou Orgue a pedales pour l'office ordinaire, which Franck's son Georges had published by Enoch in Paris in 1905. In 1935 Charles Tournemire published a selection of these works under the title L'Organiste II. It is in this version that they remain in circulation today. One hundred years later this recording takes us back to the original music, presenting it for the first time in its complete and original form. After all, Tournemire had cut 14 pieces and changed some of the remaining ones drastically. Although the title suggests a realization by either organ or harmonium, this music is nevertheless nothing else but organ repertoire. The 1905 edition contains an interesting comment from Georges Franck. A former pupil of Franck's, who was working in the country, had apparently asked the master for guidance as to how he should use his village organ. Franck is said to have given him good advice but also composed these pieces as exemplary works, as the title suggests, for the ordinary service.

    Vol. 2 download links

    Cesar Franck - Complete Organ Works. Vol.3, 2disc. 256MB, 250MB, 37MB

    The late works of great composers are often surrounded by a special aura. The knowledge of the finality of certain artistic statements instills in us – quite rightly – a particular feeling of awe. Does it matter today that Franck was an early victim of a traffic accident, dying at the relatively young age of 68, after he had also contracted pleurisy? These are mere historical facts. But there is significance that his body was transported to the cemetery of Montparnasse in 1893. The Parnasse is one of the mountains which, according to ancient poetry, is inhabited by the muses, the goddesses of the beautiful arts, poetry as well as music. This is where Franck belongs: he has climbed the "gradus ad parnassum," the steps to the Parnasse. The final volume of this acclaimed series, fittingly, includes the magnificent Three Chorales and the works entitled Pieces pour Orgue ou Harmonium, all composed within his final year. With these works, and the ones on the previous volumes, Franck enriched the symphonic and solo repertoire for organ.

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