Musical contribution - July 2018

Au Soir - Charles-Marie Widor (LiVE sample set: Utrecht, Bätz).

In the month of May, the internationally renowned organist Herman van Vliet passed away. He was no stranger to Johannus Orgelbouw. He’s been my teacher for years, and I assisted him as a registrant at concerts. (For the sake of clarity, we were not related.) The organ world has lost a passionate musician in him. He was a warm advocate for French organ music, playing all the symphonies of Charles-Marie Widor in both 1983 and 1987. Widor’s less well-known works also received Van Vliet’s attention, and he even produced arrangements of the Serenade and the Pastorale, among others.

As a homage to my former teacher, this month we’re offering an organ arrangement of “Au Soir”. This beautiful melody was originally written for piano, and is the fifth part of a six-part composition titled “Dans les Bois”. The piece is in the ABA form. The middle part can be played slightly more strongly and preferably on one manual, with a ‘poco piú animato’ tempo.

The registration instruction is my own indication, but a leading reed is also conceivable. If you choose that, then playing the melody an octave lower is also an option. During the recording, you can hear this in the repeat. Other than that, I have omitted the embellishments while playing. In my opinion, these are more suitable for the piano than for the organ.

We hope that you enjoy this evening song and that the memories of Herman van Vliet will remain alive.

With musical regards,

André van Vliet

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