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Tournemire: Organ Chorales, Op. 41 & 67; Timothy Tikker, Organist - [OAR-186] $15.98

Timothy Tikker plays the two major works in chorale form composed by Charles Tournemire (1870-1939), César Franck's student and eventual successor at Ste-Clotilde in Paris. An ideal, 66-stop organ for these works was recently restored to its 1936 state as built by Michel Merklin & Kuhn of Lyon, France, for Église Saint-Bonaventure in Lyon, a building of grand acoustics. This release is an SACD (Super Audio Compact Disc) which will play on any CD player and will deliver surround sound in even higher fidelity when played on an SACD player.

Charles Tournemire (1870-1939):

Triple Choral: Sancta Trinitas, Op. 41 (1910)

Sept Chorals-Poèmes pour les Sept Paroles du Xrist, op. 67 (1935)
  I. Pater, dimite illis nesciunt enim quid faciunt.
  II. Hodie mecum eris in Paradiso.
  III. Mulier, ecce filius tuus Ecce. Mater tua.
  IV. Eli, Eli, lamma sabacthani.
  V. Sitio.
  VI. Pater, in manos tuas commendo spiritum meum
  VII. Consummatum est.

Tournemire: Organ Chorales
by Timothy Tikker

Charles Tournemire was born 22 January 1870 in Bordeaux, France. At the age of eleven he became organist at the church of Saint-Pierre in Bordeaux, and in that same year enrolled at the local conservatory, completing his studies in 1885. In 1887, he entered the Paris Conservatoire, joining César Franck’s organ class in 1889. After Franck’s death in 1890, Tour­ne­mire completed his organ studies with Charles-­Marie Widor, winning First Prize in organ in 1891. After serving as organist at the church of Saint-­Médard, then at Saint-­Nico­las du Chardonnet, in 1898 he was named titular organist at Sainte-­Clotilde, where Franck had been titular until his death.

Tournemire composed his Triple Chorale in November 1910, the month of the twentieth anniversary of Franck’s death; indeed, the work is dedicated “to the memory of my venerated master.” Inspired by Franck’s last major organ works, the Three Chorales, Tournemire’s Triple Chorale was the first of a series of works in which he continued and expanded upon the Franckian chorale genre.

In his book César Franck (Librairie Delagrave, 1931), Tournemire wrote:
   "The highest expression of organ music is manifested in the chorale. The refined style that results gives it a special place. This is not just a question of compositional technique, the “scope“ is higher: it is the result of a particular state of soul....  The “chorale“ seemed to have given everything. It was then that after a heavy sleep of almost one hundred and forty years, a bold enterprise marked a very important era in the history of music par excellence: there was a mixture of two forms of capital interest: the chorale variation, and the Beethovenian fantasy (last quartets) – a brilliant fusion which resulted in the expansion of developments around the chorale.
A glorious new creation had just been born."

While each of Franck’s three Chorales is of distinctly different form and development, all three may be characterized as variation fantasies on more than one theme. This is the genre which Tour­ne­mire came to choose to make a primary medium for his compositional work.

As the title implies, Tournemire’s Triple Chorale is three chorales in one – just as the subtitle Sancta Trinitas concerns God who is one in three persons. Each “sub-chorale” has its own theme, yet all three themes appear in all three sub-chorales, making the work fully cyclic. The Triple Chorale is thus a set of three chorales, after Franck’s example, yet unified into a single, larger chorale.

The composer’s commentary:

"First Chorale:
You are great, O Father! You created the worlds, you set their grandiose rhythm. You created Life, we glorify you and we love you.
Second Chorale:
The one who regulates the immense rhythm of the worlds, this power which surpasses our humble understanding, God, to save us, became man, was born in a stable, grew up among men, lived a life according to the miserable world, taught sublime maxims, died on the cross between two thieves.
Let us admire the ineffable gentleness of Christ and admire his unfathomable act of goodness and greatness. Let us love Christ.
Third Chorale:
This grandiose manifestation of the silent march of the stars in space, the sublime act of Christ on the cross, this set of acts beyond our understanding was dictated by the Holy Spirit. Let us glorify to the extent of our humble ideas and our heart, the majesty of the Holy Spirit –
Let us admire! Let us love with all our hearts."

The work begins in C# minor with an introduction, using motives from the first and second chorale themes. This is followed by a fugato, the head of the first chorale theme serving as subject, the countersubject appearing at the outset. A bridge presents the first phrases of the second chorale theme, eventually leading to the first full statement of the first chorale theme, now in C# major. A brief modulating bridge based on the last phrase of the first chorale theme leads to a “preview” of the first portion of the third chorale theme in Eb major, after which the first chorale theme is restated in full, with ornamented accompaniment and occasional interpolated allusions to the third chorale theme, concluding with a diminished seventh chord.

The second chorale begins with its proper theme in B minor, marked by adding the reeds and mixtures of the third manual, which statement concludes in B major, and continues in a developmental second statement of that theme, finally arriving on D major. This, however, soon shifts to the head of the second chorale theme being stated more strongly in D# minor, resolving into Eb major as the pedal bass undertakes a full statement of the first chorale theme, accompanied by manual figurations derived (partly by inversion) from the third chorale theme, as well as interpolations of fragments of the second chorale theme, the dynamic gradually increasing. A fff climax declaims the head of the second chorale theme, and continues with intertwined fragments of the first chorale theme, which allusions continue through a gradual decrescendo to pp.

The third chorale begins with its own theme in E major, in the left hand with the Voix humaine stop, the right hand and double pedal providing an intricate counterpoint on flute tones. This is followed by a full statement of the first chorale theme, also in E major, on the Viole de Gambe and Voix Céleste, continuing with a statement of the second chorale theme over a low E pedal point. The “quartet” texture of the third chorale’s opening then returns as a concluding coda – the Triple Chorale ending in the relative major of the work’s opening minor tonality.

Quite unusually for Tournemire, the original edition of Triple Chorale (Janin Frères, 1912) specified no registrations, only dynamic marks and indications of when one or two manuals are in play (though without specifying which manuals). After offering just a few particular suggestions as to registration, the composer’s preface concludes “in general, the ‘colorations’ are left to the artist’s knowledge.” A half-century later, Tournemire’s student Maurice Duru­flé released a new edition (Schola Cantorum, 1962), based on his experience studying the piece with the composer, hearing him perform it in the reinaugural concert of the organ at Notre-Dame de Louviers (17 October 1926), and examining the composer’s own performance score, which had been lent to general editor Norbert Dufourcq by Tournemire’s widow. 

That performance score is now in the Charles Tournemire Collection of the Library of Congress in Washington, D. C. Careful examination reveals that:
•    Its numerous, specific indications of registration are clearly meant for the organ at Sainte-Clotilde, though after its 1933 enlargement, since a number of the added registers are specified; Tournemire performed Triple Chorale in concert at Sainte-­Clotilde 7 June 1934, not quite a year after the enlarged organ’s reinauguration, so this may well be the perfor­mance for which this score is registered.
•    While Duruflé’s edition specifies a num­ber of registrations similar to Tour­ne­mire’s, many others are actually quite different; obviously, as the original edition’s preface left the choice of colors up to “the artist,” Duruflé felt free to take that initiative.
For the present recording, a copy of the original edition was used, and the Library of Congress score served as the source for choice of registrations, which were all transferred to the Saint-Bonaventure organ as directly as possible. Additionally, a photocopy of the original manuscript was consulted, allowing the correction of several errors in the published score.

The Seven Chorale-Poems for the Seven Last Words of Christ were inspired by a pilgrimage to Beauvais cathedral, composed 15 February to 29 March 1935, and premiered by the composer at Sainte-Clotilde on 6 June 1935. These present a different approach to the chorale genre than does the Triple Chorale, being in a sense closer to the formal schemes actually used by Franck.

Franck was quoted as saying that, in his chorales, the actual “chorale” is heard not at the outset, but over the course of the work – i.e. among the piece’s themes, one that first appears only later is the “chorale” theme proper, typically having something of a more stately, hymnlike character. This is the procedure used in all seven of the Chorale-Poems.

The Chorale-Poems were composed in the order 5, 6, 7, 1, 2, 3, 4. This is significant, in that the first theme of no. 5 – Sitio: I thirst – appears in all but one of the other chorales. This repeated allusion to Christ’s thirst is clearly meant as a recurring symbol of his suffering, such that this movement has a primary programmatic, theological significance in the cycle, which is clearly why Tournemire chose to write it first.
In contrast to the tonal (albeit highly chromatic) language of the Triple Choral, the Chorale-­Poems’ themes are all modal – though employ­ing two quite different modal systems: the first four pieces use Gregorian modes, the last three Hindu (Carnatic) modes. As Hinduism is polytheistic, Tournemire saw it as representing a phase of human development still in darkness, whereas Christianity’s monotheism represented a subsequent phase of enlightenment. Tour­ne­mire’s use of these modal systems is symbolic: the Gregorian modes of the first four “words,” indicate how Christ is still in his divine power, while the Hindu modes of the final three “words” depict Christ succumbing to death’s darkness (similar use of Hindu modes appears in other of Tournemire’s works, e.g. the Douze Préludes-­Poèmes pour le piano, op. 58, and the Symphonie-­Choral d’orgue, op. 59).

The composer’s commentaries, each followed by a brief formal analysis:

1.    Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.
Humanity has so little notion of what is supremely superior that it is not surprising that the work of the Christ was originally so misunderstood... And, it was to such an extent that, in the most humanly dramatic “minutes:“ notably in the midst of the torture of the crucifixion, the Christ was insulted by the people... However, his coming to earth had but one goal:  the regeneration of the human race.

The movement begins Allegro ben moderato in F Dorian, the agitated first theme suggesting the ominous scene of crucifixion. The second theme is the “chorale” proper, first appearing in the pedal bass, then continuing the manual’s top voice. Its stately, majestic quality clearly depicts Christ’s divinely forgiving nature, in stark contrast to the tumult of the mob. The “thirst” theme is then introduced, its two initial statements interrupted by the agitated figures derived from the opening material. There follows a second full statement of the chorale theme, now entirely in the top voice. With increases in dynamic, the “thirst” theme undergoes a period of development. A brief decrescendo leads to a return of the opening agitated theme, followed by declamatory chords – based on the opening notes of the chorale theme – and running scales, including what may well be the first pedal glissando in organ repertory. The chorale theme is then heard in diminution, developed in that guise, leading to a return of the opening agitated motive. More declamatory chords precede the concluding statement of the choral theme, this time in major (i.e. Mixolydian) mode, though the final phrases are combined with the “thirst” theme, which is then taken over by the pedals in a final declamation, leading to the concluding chords, marked ffff.

2.    Today thou shalt be with me in paradise.
Man, even criminal, but sincerely repentant, is not refused definitive forgiveness, and the celestial doors open wide before him.

Marked Andante (Assai), the flowing first theme in C Aeolian is presented on coupled unison flutes and Bourdons. The chorale theme follows, set in chords on a jeu de tierce registration. The first theme is then restated, the melody ornamented, the accompaniment un­changed. The chorale theme then appears in the pedal bass, with a highly chromatic manual accompaniment, and cadencing in C major. A low C pedal point introduces an interlude which begins with the “thirst” theme, continuing with the first theme, in triplet rhythms on uncoupled Bourdon and flute tone. This leads to a third statement of the chorale theme, in augmentation, in chords in the right hand with the Voix humaine, the left hand continuing the triplet eighth-notes as an accompaniment over sustained pedal tones, the whole wonderfully evoking the image of the heavens opening. The coda is based on the first theme, ornamented anew, the movement ending quietly on a G major dominant seventh chord.

3.    Mother, behold thy son; behold thy mother.
Christ, addressing his mother thus, in such an imperious manner, wishes to make her understand the greatness of the mystery of the Incarnation, its unfathomable development, the crucifixion made inevitable and from which emerges, singularly reinforced, the redemptive idea which saved the world... John silently contemplates her who had the notable honor of carrying God himself in her womb. John, the precursor of Christ!!

This word’s first theme, marked Ben moderato (senza rigore), in Ab Lydian, is presented in canon between the soprano and tenor voices, on coupled unison foundations. A brief bridge, marked by the addition of the third manual’s mixtures, alludes to the “thirst” theme. The mixtures are then withdrawn for the first appearance of the chorale theme, beginning and ending on A-natural, having a mixed modal character, with both G and C being natural or sharp. An appearance of the “thirst” theme immediately follows, marked by the addition of the third manual’s unison reed voices, concluding with an allusion to the chorale theme. A crescendo to nearly full organ leads to the second statement of the first theme, again in canon, this time between soprano and pedal bass. Then, as toccata figurations ensue, a pedal bass line briefly alludes to the second theme in augmentation, followed by a full statement of the second theme in the soprano voice. Toccata figures continue among appearances of the head of the “thirst” theme. A final statement of the first theme, in diminution, alternates with the chorale theme, also in diminution, played by the pedals. A coda concludes with the head of the first theme repeated in the pedals, leading to a ffff conclusion on bare octaves.

4.    My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
Terribly human cry! And it is the son of God himself who utters it as if the creator of the worlds was appalled by his inconceivable leniency for the human race.

The fourth word , marked Maestoso, begins as a passacaglia – finding its precedent in the open­ing of Franck’s Second Chorale – all forcefully declaimed on full organ. The requisite ostinato bass, in Bb Mixolydian, is first stated the pedal’s tenor range, then in octaves as the first variation employs diminished seventh chords in the hands. The second variation is in two voices, the manual voice employing triplets against the pedal’s duplets. The third variation, marked en insistant, employs dissonant chords, then sextuplet figures over pedal octaves. The passacaglia format is then transformed, as the hands introduce the choral theme, in E, in a mixed major modality, each phrase alternating the with passacaglia theme in diminution in the pedals. The last phase of the passacaglia theme is then declaimed in the manuals in octaves, punctuated by explosively dissonant chords, the last chord repeated in a decrescendo. A held D# in octaves on the third manual foundations and reeds leads to a second full statement of the chorale theme, each phrase alternating with the passacaglia theme, again in diminution, in the left hand on the second manual foundations. The passacaglia theme is then heard in its final statement, as a clarinet soliloquy, marked Ben moderato, alternating with allusions to the chorale theme on lone Bourdon lines. The stark coda, over a low Bb pedal point, derives from the upward scalar phrase of the “thirst” theme.

5.    I thirst.
Thirst for love... me, who gave my soul, my heart and my body, to man to regenerate him. I thirst! And I am left to expire on my infamous cross.

Finally heard in its home movement, the “thirst” theme, marked Ben moderato, is based on the Hindu mode chalanâta (C D# E F G A# B), and is presented in a two-voice texture, in desolate mood, on the Voix Humaine. The chorale theme, in the same mode, is then heard in a three-part harmonization on the Hautbois, followed by an allusion to the “thirst” theme on a lone Bourdon. These two themes are each heard in a second statement, both with melody ornamented, the first again on the Voix Humaine, the chorale on the Trompette. An interlude in two voices, on strings coupled to a Bourdon, develops the “thirst” theme. The triplet figures of the interlude continue as accompanying figures on Bourdons, in the third statement of the chorale theme, now in the tenor on the Voix Humaine without tremolo. The coda beings as a two-part canon on Bourdons over a low C pedal point, based on the “thirst” theme, followed by the chorale theme in diminution on the Voix Humaine.

6.    Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit.
The work being accomplished, the spirit returns to the spirit... God returns to God... God has consented to suffer like an ordinary man, then, judging the bloody spectacle and the lavish offenses sufficient, he sets out by his own power, into his inaccessible kingdom and finds himself in the fullness of his glory.

The sixth word’s first theme, on mode çan­kârad­vâni (F G Ab Bb C Db D) is introduced in fugato. The dynamic increases with the entry in the pedals of the fourth voice, increasing further through the episode leading to the chorale theme, on the same mode, heard in octaves in the top voice. The left hand then begins a sextuplet sixteenth-note figuration, based on the first theme, which becomes an accompaniment to the second statement of the chorale theme, now on a G tonic. A bridge briefly develops the chorale theme in diminution, culminating in a crashing fff chord, symbolizing Christ’s breaking free of his physical body, the dynamic reducing with succeeding chords, leading to single held Ab. The coda begins with a quiet pedal recitative, derived from the first theme, followed by a final statement of that theme on a Bourdon, concluding with a last appearance of the “thirst” theme, soloed on the Voix Céleste.
7.    It is finished.
The redemptive work has reached the final limits of sacrifice... The drops of blood of the Savior flood the firmament!! And the ultimate “breath“ of Christ vivifies hearts and souls, from generation to generation.

A pedal ostinatic figure, derived from the first theme, establishes this word’s atmosphere of bleak desolation, the first theme, on sâlanâga (Ab Bbb Cbb D Eb Fb G), soon heard over an anguished chromatic harmony, on strings coupled to Bourdons. The chorale theme im­me­di­ate­ly follows, on mode bhâvaprya (E F G A# B C D), high in the top voice over an ostinato accompaniment. As the Voix Humaine is added, a phrase freely derived from the first theme leads to the second statement of the chorale theme, interrupted by a bourdon recitative based on the first theme. The coda, marked Lento, offers a final presentation of the first theme, the work ending on a chord of open fifths.

The score’s final page is inscribed with a citation from noted cleric and author Monsignor Charles-Louis Gay (1815-1892):
The heart of Christ is the revelation of the heart of God;
The cross is the revelation of the heart of Christ.

The published edition of Seven Chorale-Poems (Max Eschig, 1937) presents several questionable passages, both in note accuracy and regi­stra­tion. Tournemire’s original manu­scripts – which had also served as his performances scores – were accessed via scans from the Bib­lio­thèque National de France, which allowed a thorough proofreading. These answered most questions, especially concerning wrong notes, missing ties, etc., as well as bringing up some surprises, e.g. a missing pedal measure on page 3 of no. 5. Some corrections involve registration, e.g. the inclusion of the Hautbois from the beginning of no. 1, or the removal of the string stops for the last chord of no. 2. Certain matters, however, are left ambiguous in the manuscripts, especially some of swell-box management; for this recording, these were resolved on a case-by-case basis, determining solutions that worked best on the Saint-­Bonaventure organ.

I studied all seven Choral-Poems with Tour­ne­mire’s student Jean Langlais in 1982 and 1984. Langlais was present at the composer’s pre­mi­ère performance of the work, and carefully taught me a number of details of interpretation, including particular alterations of tempo, rhythm and articulation that do not appear in the printed scores. These have all been faithfully incorporated into the present recording.

The organ of the Basilique Saint-­Bona­ven­ture in Lyon, France, was chosen for this recording, because it has all of the essential tonal characteristics required for Tournemire’s music, especially for the Chorale-Poems. Achieving its definitive state in 1936, it is exactly contemporary with opus 67. Tournemire’s student Marcel Paponaud (1893-1988) was organiste titulaire here at the time of this rebuild, and it is understood that Tournemire served as consultant for the project – so it is no wonder that this organ is especially suited to his music. While the organ underwent a few tonal changes in 1960, these were carried out by the same firm that did the work in 1936, so the new registers are well integrated into the overall tonal scheme – and some of the new registers, e. g. the Positif Principals 8' and 4', are actually more advantageous for this music. The Trompette en chamade added in 1985 blends ideally into the full chorus, providing needed extra power for the ffff moments in opus 67. Michel Jurine’s recent restoration incorporated the most recent type of combination system, which proved vital for carrying out Tour­nemire’s elaborate registration schemes.

The Organ and Its Restoration
by Michael Jurine, Organbuilder

The history of the instrument may be summarized, as follows:
·    1845: Joseph Callinet built an organ in the choir, on the right side.
·    1855: Joseph Callinet moved the organ to the back wall of the choir and separated it into two sections; this is the case that we see currently. The central portion of the case which linked the two sections is found today in the side chapel dedicated to Saint Anthony of Padua.
·    1860: the Merklin-Schütze company of Paris & Brussels rebuilt the instrument, making partial use of the pipework of Joseph Callinet.
·    1873: Joseph Merklin, recently established in Lyon, renovated the Merklin-Schütze organ (note that Joseph Merklin, born in Oberhausen in Baden in 1819, worked for a long portion of his career in Belgium before moving to Lyon in 1872, where he remained until 1894).
·    1885: Joseph Merklin enlarged the instrument, adding a third manual with electric action, and providing a significant number of new stops.
·    1936: the original Michel-Merklin et Kuhn company, whose business address was established at 11 rue Vendôme in Lyon, completely rebuilt the instrument.

It is the organ of 1936, built by Michel-­Merklin et Kuhn (MMK) of Lyon, which we restored in 2023. If one excludes the organ of the Auditorium Maurice Ravel, this is the largest organ in Lyon and one of the largest in all of South-Western France.

A visit to the instrument allowed the identification of elements of the MMK company taken from the old organ: several stops, of which some are by Joseph Callinet and Joseph Merklin, and two large primary reservoirs. But all the other components of the organ date from 1936: the wooden structure, seven reservoirs, all 13 of the windchests (five for the Grand Orgue, two for the Positif, three for the Récit, three for the Pédale), all of the action, the “Art Déco” console, and a large portion of the pipe­work – the whole voiced per the esthetic criteria of the 1930s.

The MMK instrument was subject to several renovations; the main ones date from 1960 and 1985. These renovations included modifications of the stops and an addition in 1985 of a Chamade stop placed on the roof of the casework (Trompette and extended Clairon, 73 pipes).

A list of the principal elements of the organ illustrates the considerable scope of the restoration work we have just completed:
·    15 windchests, comprising 5,000 leather pouches
·    nine reservoirs and two blowers
·    4,249 pipes forming 66 stops, of which six are extended
Our work consisted of the following operations:
·    Dismantling, and transporting all pipework, several reservoirs and chests and the console to the workshop.
·    Cleaning of all components of the organ.
·    Re-leathering all nine reservoirs and replacing the two blowers.
·    Restoration of the chests, which we have insulated against dryness and have protected from their placement near the large choir windows.
·    Replacement of all chest leathers. Re-installation, regulation and testing.
·    Replacement of keyboard coverings and console wood veneers; replacement of the pedalboard and bench.
·    Complete replacement of all key and stop action with digital systems; replacement of all cables.
·    Installation of a combination system.
·    Voicing of all 4,249 pipes, respecting the style and esthetic criteria desired by the voicers of the MMK company in 1936.

The organ world very much likes to give an aesthetic label to organs: baroque organ, neo-baroque, organ, symphonic organ, romantic organ, neo-classical organ, what else? I don’t wish to classify this organ. It is the organ of Saint-Bonaventure with all of its originality, its strength and its incomparable colors. It represents perhaps the tonal ideal dreamt of by the composer Charles Tournemire.

May the few lines give homage to the organbuilding artisans of the MMK company, and to my colleagues who gave all their skill in service to this restoration.
—Michael Jurine, Organbuilder,
Doctor of Musicology,
Rontalon, 23 September 2023

1936 / 1960 Michel-Merklin et Kuhn, Lyon, France
restored 2023 Michael Jurine, Facteur d’Orgues, Rontalon, France
Église Saint-Bonaventure, Lyon, France

Grand Orgue:
    16    Principal
    16    Bourdon
    8    Montre
    8    Flûte harm.
    8    Bourdon
    8    Salicional
    4    Prestant
    4    Flûte douce
    2    Doublette
    III    Cornet (c’)
    IV    Fourniture
    IV    Cymbale
    16    Bombarde
    8    Trompette
    4    Clairon

    8    Principal
    8    Flûte creuse
    8    Bourdon
    8    Dulciane
    4    Principal
    4    Bourdon
    2-2/3    Nazard
    2    Quarte de Nazard
    1-3/5    Tierce
    1-1/3    Larigot
    1    Piccolo
    IV    Plein-jeu
    III    Cymbale
    8    Trompette
    8    Cromorne

Récit (expressif):
    16    Quintaton
    8    Diapason
    8    Flûte traversière
    8    Cor de Nuit
    8    Viole de Gambe
    8    Voix Céleste (c0)
    4    Diapason
    4    Flûte octaviante
    2    Octavin harm.
    V    Fourniture
    V    Cornet (fº)
    16    Bombarde
    8    Trompette harm.
    4    Clairon harm.
    8    Basson-Hautbois
    8    Voix Humaine
    8    Chamade (horizontal,         unenclosed)
    4    Chamade (ext.)

    32    Bourdon
    16    Flûte
    16    Bourdon (ext.)
    10    Quinte
    8    Flûte (ext.)
    8    Bourdon (ext.)
    8    Principal
    5-1/3    Quinte (ext)
    4    Flûte (ext.)
    4    Principal (ext.)
    2    Principal (ext.)
    III    Mixture
    32    Bombarde
(sic: Basson resultant)
    16    Bombarde
    16    Basson
    8    Trompette (ext.)
    8    Basson (ext.)
    4    Clairon (ext.)
    8    Chamade (Réc.)
    4    Chamade (Réc.)

Gd. Orgue
Gd. Orgue 4
Positif 4
Récit 4

Récit 16
Récit 4
Récit/Positif 16
Récit/Positif 4
Récit/G.O. 16
Récit/G.O. 4
Positif/GO 16
Positif/G.O. 4

Mixtures (Appels):
Gd. Orgue

Anche (Appels):
Gd. Orgue

Tutti (Appels):


Combinateur ELTEC, 15 x 7992 = 119,880 combinaisons
Coupure Pédale
(Pedal Divide,

Manual Compasses:
61 notes, C-c4
Pedal Compass:
32 notes, C-g1

Timothy Tikker

Timothy Tikker completed the Bachelor of Music degree magna cum laude in Organ Performance at San Francisco State University. He obtained the Master of Music degree in Organ Performance at the University of Oregon, Eugene, where he studied improvisation with Guy Bovet and fugue with Harold Owen. Supported by a Ruth Lorraine Close Award from the University of Oregon, he studied with Jean Langlais in Paris, France. In 2013, he completed the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Organ Performance under Marilyn Mason at the University of Michigan.

An active composer and solo keyboardist, Tikker has won numerous awards, including: First Prize in the San Anselmo Organ Improvisation Competition (1987); the American Guild of Organists/Holtkamp Award in Organ Composition (1993-94); First Prize, Furio Fran­ces­chini Competition in Organ Composition, UNESP, Brazil (1997); Finalist Award, Aliénor Harpsichord Composition Competition (2000). Commissioned works include an anthem for chorus and orchestra for the centennial of the Basilica of St. Josaphat, Milwaukee, premiered by the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, and solo organ works for conventions of the American Guild of Organists and the Organ Historical Society.

He has served as a professional church musician for nearly fifty years, both as organist and music director. While serving as organist at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Charleston, South Carolina 1996-2000, he was also active in the Piccolo Spoleto Festival of the Arts, performing as featured soloist with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra in 2000. He performed as harpsichord soloist with the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra in 2002.
Dr. Tikker is also author of many publications about music, including articles for The American Organist, Journal of the American Institute of Organbuilders, Journal of the American Musical Instrument Society, The Diapason, l’Orgue and other periodicals. His essays appear in scholarly books about composers Liszt and Tournemire, and he has presented academic papers in conferences on Tournemire in London and Miami. His solo organ recordings appear on the Arkay, OHS and Raven labels, and his compositions have been recorded for Centaur, JAV Records, Pro Organo and Raven. His improvised organ accompaniment for Cecil B. DeMille’s silent film King of Kings was recorded for the DVD released by the Criterion Collection.

"I certify that Mr. Timothy Tikker, who studied in 1984 under my guidance, is one of the most gifted temperaments that I have ever encountered. It is particularly in the works of my teacher Charles Tournemire that he has shown the utmost comprehension and affinity, and I do not hessite to say that in the United States, Timothy Tikker is without doubt one of the best specialists in the work of Tournemire." —Jean Langlais

Tournemire: Organ Chorales, Op. 41 & 67; Timothy Tikker, Organist
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