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This is a very elegant recording indeed of music by two pupils of the Orpheus of Amsterdam, Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck. Bernard Foccroulle’s distinguished career as a composer and interpreter of both early and contemporary organ music has occurred alongside a spectacular administrative career during which he has been director, successively, of the ‘Munt’ Opera in Brussels and the international festival at Aix-en-Provence. His mercurial playing here, more poetic than monumental, matches the burnished lustre of the Stellwagen organ in Lübeck very well, with the four original short-length reeds a particular joy, whether as soloists or in consort. The highlight is Foccroulle’s own completion of Praetorius’s Chorale Fantasia on ‘Durch Adams Fall’, a rare example of the genre specified for three manuals and with particularly virtuosic echo passages. Warmly recommended.

CHRIS BRAGG Read the full review on Agora Classica


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