Saturday, February 20, 2010

1714 Silbermann organ, Dom St. Marien, Freiberg, Saxony, Germany

Gallery organ Silbermann, 1711-14

* 3 manuals and pedal
* 44 stops, 67 ranks
* Mechanical key and stop action

The cathedral

St. Mary's cathedral was built in the Roman style around 1180/1190. The church has been granted the rank of collegiate church and cathedral in 1480. Following a fire in 1484, it was rebuilt in the Gothic style until 1501. The community went to Lutheran faith in 1537.

The organ


Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) Toccata and Fugue in D minor "Dorian" BWV 538
Karl Richter at the Silbermann organ in Freiberg  

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) Toccata and Fugue in D minor "Dorian" BWV 538
Fugue Karl Richter at the Silbermann organ in Freiberg  

The gallery organ, built by Gottfried Silbermann, is not only the most important of the 30 organs built by the renowned organ builder, it is considered to be the one with the world's best tonal structure since it incorporates both French and Saxon tonal elements.

Elias Lindner, the young Cathedral organist, is responsible for the design of both the instrument and the organ case. In 1738, the organ was cleaned and the organ case was regilded by Christian Polycarp Butzaus and two stops were modified by Gottfried Silbermann. At the same time, the reservoir system (6 large cuneiform single rise bellows) has been modified.

During the restoration carried out from 1981 to 1983 by organbuilding firm Jemmlich Orgelbau, from Dresden, wind pressures were brought back to the levels they were in 1714 and the unequal temperament was slightly modified in order to get a compromise between the modern equal temperament and the meantone temperament originally used. In order to protect the historical pipework and to be sure that no pipe would be cut or modified, new tuning collars were installed.

A special attraction for organ enthusiasts is the great organ by Gottfried Silbermann with its three Organ manuals and 2574 organ pipes. Opposite of it is another, smaller Silbermann organ, which is also an excellent instrument.

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)Prelude and triple Fugue in E flat major BWV 552
2. Fuga à 5 con pèdale pro Organo pleno
Ton Koopman at the Silbermann organ of Freiberg Dom (Germany)

Ton Koopman plays Bach's Fugue in g minor on the great Silbermann organ (built 1714-18, renovated 1981-83) at St. Marien Cathedral in Freiberg.

J. S. Bach (1685-1750): Fuga sopra il Magnificat BWV 733
Gabor Soos - organ Freiberg, Dom (J. G. Silbermann, 1714)

Silbermann organ in the Dom St. Marien of Freiberg, Saxony, Germany

Silbermann organ in the Dom St. Marien of Freiberg, Saxony, Germany


Brustwerk 11 (9)

Gedackt 8

Principal 4

Rohrflöt 4

Nassat 2 2/3

Octava 2

Tertia 1 3/5

Qvinta 1 1/3

Sufflöt 1

Mixtur III

Hauptwerk 22 (13)

Bordun 16

Principal 8

Rohrflöt 8

Viola di Gamba 8

Octava 4

Qvinta 2 2/3

Super-Octava 2

Tertia 1 3/5

Cornet V
ab c1

Mixtur IV

Zimbeln III

Trompet 8

Clarin 4

Oberwerk 20 (13)

Qvintadehn 16

Principal 8

Gedackt 8

Qvintadehn 8

Octava 4

Spitzflöt 4

Super-Octava 2

Flaschflöt 2

Echo V
ab c1

Mixtur III

Zimbeln II

Krumbhorn 8

Vox humana 8

+ Schwebung

Pedal 14 (9)

Untersatz 32

Principal Bass 16

Sub Bass 16

Octav Bass 8

Octav Bass 4

Pedalmixtur VI

Posaun Bass 16

Trompet Bass 8

Clarin Bass 4

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)Pedaliter section from the Prelude and Fugue in C minor BWV 549 Ton Koopman at the Silbermann organ in Freiberg Dom

Ton Koopman performs J.S. Bach - Chorale 'Schmucke dich, o liebe Seele' BWV 654
on the 1714 Silbermann organ of the St. Mary Cathedral in Freiberg, Saxony.

Karl Richter plays the Partite diverse sopra, Sei gegrüßet, Jesu gütig, BWV 768 at the Silbermann orgel of Freiberg Dom.

1. Variation X
2. Variation XI

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) Praeludium und Fuge a-moll BWV 551
Marie-Claire Alain at the Silbermann organ in Freiberg

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) Canzona in D minor BWV 588
Marie-Claire Alain at the Silbermann in Freiberg

Temperament: modified Mean-Tone 1/6 comma pitag.
Pitch: A'=476 Hz.

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