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Max Reger: Works for organ and vocal compositions

Max Reger: Works for organ and vocal compositions 

© 2016 (ROP6133)

Total time 67:03

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Catalogue no.: ROP6133

EUR 16,95

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Almost no one has enriched the organ repertoire in such an unconventional way as Max Reger. Less well-known are his sacred songs for organ and voice, in which he combines his entire wealth of experience as an organ composer with melodious lines and a deep understanding of the text. The St. Thomas organist Ullrich Böhme and mezzosoprano Susanne Langner devote themselves to both monumental organ works and selected organ songs.

A very special instrument was used for the recording. The Sauer Organ, built in 1889 in the Leipzig St. Thomas Church, can justly claim to be perfectly suited to the interpretation of Reger: none less than the composer’s close friend Karl Straube premiered many of Reger’s compositions on this organ. It was through Ullrich Böhme’s efforts that the organ was fully restored. One can therefore look forward to hearing a real authority on multi-facetted music. Böhme utilizes the colorfulness of his organ to the utmost and impressively delineates the details of the virtuosic Fantasia and Fugue on B-A-C-H op. 46 and of the equally challenging and acoustically powerful Fantasia on “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” op. 27. Subsequently, he traces the darkest depths of the Trauerode op. 145/1 (Ode to Grief) so as to let the bright clarity of its final chorale shine even more clearly. In addition, he proves himself to be a sensitive accompanist as Susanne Langner presents the selected chorale-like songs in moving simplicity and fully realizes her artistic intentions to the incomparable accompaniment of the organ.

Max Reger often referred to Johann Sebastian Bach and the Protestant chorale as points of reference. The works recorded here document strikingly how different the results of this engagement with the past were.

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Susanne Langner
Thomasorganist Ullrich Böhme

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