These 4 delightful variations of More Palatino originally were attributed to Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck.
I have created this score with the hope that it will help my students who love early music to recreate articulate legato style automatically, almost without thinking.
Thanks to Jeremy Owens for his meticulous transcription of fingering from the slow motion videos.
If you liked Baletto del Granduca, I'm sure you'll love More Palatino too.
Check it out here
Intermediate level. Manuals only. PDF score. 3 pages. 50% discount is valid until March 16.
This score is free for Total Organist students.
Would you like to learn Da Pacem, Domine, in diebus nostris by the great Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck (1562-1621)?
If so, this score is for you because it will save you many hours of frustration. I have created early fingering for every single note which will allow you to achieve articulate legato automatically, almost without thinking.
This set consists of 4 variations (manualiter only, no pedals):
Variation 1: Bicinium with the chorale melody (cantus firmus) in the soprano
Variation 2: Trio with the chorale melody in the tenor
Variation 3: Quartet with the chorale melody in the alto
Variation 4: Quartet with the chorale melody in the bass
Note that these four settings are perfect example for anybody wants to creatively play hymn accompaniments. You too, can create duets, trios, and quartets from any hymn tune and place the melody in ANY voice.
Thanks to Alan who meticulously transcribed the fingering from my videos.
50% discount is valid until February 5.
Check out this score here
Intermediate level. PDF score (4 pages). This score is free for Total Organist students.
Ausra and I are preparing for a recital together which will be in 10 days were we will be performing solo and duet works by Sweelinck, Bach, Mozart and Mendelssohn.
Ausra is playing the famous Fantasia Chromatica by Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck (1562-1621), "Orpheus of Amsterdam" and "the Maker of German Organists" as he was called back in the day to point out his artistic and pedagogical significance.
The piece is called "Chromatic" because of the theme which is presented in the beginning. It is formed of descending chromatic tetrachord and later developed in all kinds of ways - canons, augmentation, diminution, double augmentation and double diminution.
Interestingly, Sweelinck worked out not only the main subject but also the counter-subject so this piece is a pinnacle of polyphonic mastery before Bach. Of course it's so difficult to pick one Sweelinck's piece over the others because most of them are masterpieces.
Fantasia Chromatica is so fantastic that I thought our students who love early music would want to play it too. Therefore I've prepared a PDF score with complete early fingering (5 pages) for efficient practice and instant articulated legato touch. It will save you many hours and give you the tools for historically informed performance practice.
50 % discount is valid until November 15.
Enjoy and let us know how your practice of this piece goes.
This score is free for Total Organist students.
Troubles with the echo passages
By Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene (get free updates of new posts here)
Today I'd like to share with you the video of Sweelinck's Echo Fantasia in a (Aeolian).
I played it as part of our "Laudate Dominum" recital (18th part of the cycle "7 Centuries of Organ Music").
Although the echo's were tricky to manage between the 1st manual and the 2nd manual, I felt much more secure than many years ago on Van Covellens 1511 organ at Sint Laurenskerk in Alkmaar, the Netherlands (I was given only 5 minutes to rehearse there).
In Vilnius, at least all the keys are here (short octave in the bass and missing accidentals in the top octave in Alkmaar organ make it a bizarre yet totally enchanting experience to play it for the first time).
While we're at it, listen to an amazing conversation Vidas had with Pieter van Dijk on the SOP Podcast about the organs in this church.
Do you find hard to jump from manual to manual in fast passages to create an echo effect?
Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck (1562-1621) was a legendary Dutch Master organist, composer, and pedagogue of the 17th century. He is most renown for not only for his great polyphonic choral writing but also for being a founder of the North German Organ School.
He is also frequently called "Maker of German organists" because of his influential teaching activities that helped propel and flourish the renown North German Organ School. His most famous students include Samuel Scheidt, Heinrich Scheidemann, Melchior Schildt, Jacob Praetorius II, and Anders Duben among many others.
Sweelinck's keyboard style was influenced mostly by two major trends: Italian vocal polyphony and English virginal composers. From Italians the composer inherited beautiful linear counterpoint writing with mostly constant number of parts in the composition.
From the English virginalists, he took over their virtuosic figurational writing which consisted of frequent passages, runs, arpeggios, flourishes, diminutions and various other types of figuration.
Ballo del Granduca is one of today's favorites pieces by Sweelinck. Its authenticity is doubtful as it might have been composed by Samuel Scheidt. The title of the piece refers to the Balleto (or little dance of joyful character of the Renaissance) of the Great Duke.
It is a set of theme on a dance tune and 4 variations, although the opening section is called variation 1. Variation 1 consists of many colourful and joyfully sounding chords with a characteristic long-short-short rhythms.
It contains 5 sections each one with a duration of 4 measures and ends with strong closed cadences at the end of each phrase. The cadences are in G major (the tonic key of the piece), C major, A minor, G major, and G major. The first and the fifth phrases are repeated.
The second variation features many passages and runs in the right hand part with eighth or sixteenth notes rhythms while the left hand plays chordal accompaniment in two or three voices. In variation 3, the hands switch: eight note diminutions are transfered to the left hand part and the accompanimental role is given to the right hand part.
The 4th variation contains most of the virtuosic sixteenth note passages and diminutions in the right hand part which are so characteristic of Sweelinck's style. The variation cycle ends (variation 5) with eight note motion in the right hand part (in double thirds and sixths). Technically speaking, this is the most challenging variation and therefore a culmination of the entire set of variations.
I use the Barenreiter edition of Sweelinck's works, which is quite reliable.
By the way, do you want to learn to play the King of Instruments - the pipe organ? If so, download my FREE video guide: "How to Master Any Organ Composition" in which I will show you my EXACT steps, techniques, and methods that I use to practice, learn and master any piece of organ music.
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Drs. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
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