Sheet music

Musical contribution - March 2014

Choral arrangement: “Jezus, om Uw lijden groot” (Johan Bredewout)  -  Much Easter music can be heard in March. Regardless of whether Easter comes early or late, March always falls in the Passion time. We will also pay attention to this. Johan Bredewout (from the Dutch town of Vollenhove) wrote the choral arrangement that is given priority this month.

The origins of this very simple melody has never been determined. Lines 1 and 3 are the same and lines 2 and 4 are nearly the same. The scope is but a small sixth.

The text is from Rev. E. Bersier (1831-1890). He was a much loved clergyman. He did important work for the mission and the christian social work. He also promoted the modernisation of the liturgy.

We can clearly see the traditional structure in the prelude: short-short-long (measure 1-2, 3-4, 5-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-19). The plaintive character of the melody is amplified by the pedal part that must be played marcato. Clearly not staccato.

There are sufficient options for a solo voice. I, myself, have chosen an 8’ principal. I mentioned on purpose in the first paragraph the place where Johan Bredewout is an organist. A beautiful Bosch/Schnitger organ from 1686 can be found in the Grote Kerk (Church) at this location. I heard the beautiful 8' principal of the Great in my thoughts during the recording.

You can now hear Choral I with both hands on the Great. Choral II is what is commonly referred to as a tenor position. It is perfect to play with solo reed stop. The interlude (‘tussenspel’) sounds immediately in f-minor without modulation. “ff” has been prescribed for this. This is a good option (note: that is not to say that all stops must be opened). I have personally chosen “mf” with a 16’ and then pushing in the direction of the choral. Because of the insistent character of the text (where “clamouring” and “imploring” are involved).

The postlude (‘naspel’) is a section from the prelude that ends with a beautiful one-but-last chord – a reference to J.S. Bach – that ultimately still dissolves.

This arrangement can easily be used when this hymn appears in your liturgy but it is not unbecoming as an organ solo on a programme.

Kind regards,
André