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Installed in Birmingham University’s Elgar Concert Hall in 2014, French builder Marc Garnier’s first British-based organ makes its debut on disc with a satisfyingly broad programme designed to show offits polyglottal abilities. The C major richness of Bach’s Toccata, Adagio & Fugue (BWV 564) and the Praeludium BWV 566a, with its flamboyant stylus phantasticus framing two fugues, deftly demonstrate its core chorus with nimble dexterity. Franz Danksagmüller’s Versus makes much of congealing note clusters that shake the bellows to deliver a stuttering wind supply for the solo line. Schumann’s Four Sketches for Pedal Piano extol the vital diversity of the organ’s Schwellwerk division, and Jon Laukvik’s Via Crucis reveals a voice of kaleidoscopic colours. Henry Fairs delivers all with requisite intimacy and flair.

MICHAEL QUINN Read the full review on Agora Classica


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