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Joseph de TORRES (1661 – 1727)
Obra de Lleno de 7th Tono *
Fuga **
Partido de sexto tono **
Fray Bartolomeo de OLAGUE (18th century)

Xacara *
Correa de AURAUXO

Tercero tiento de baxon (septimo tono) *
Tieno XV de quarto tono *
Tiento IX de noveno tono **
Antonio de CABEZON (1510 – 1566)

Duuinsela *
Juan CABANILLES (1644 – 1712)

Toccata de mano izquierda *
Tiento Lleno de Quarto *
Daniel Gottlob TURK (1750 – 1813)

Rondo ***
Nicholas CARLSON (17th century)

A Verse ***
Jan Pieterszoon SWEELINCK (1562 – 1621)

Est-ce-Mars ? **
Thomas TOMPKINS (1572 – 1656)

A Fancy ***
William BYRD (1543 – 1623)

La Volta Alleman **
Peter PHILIPS (1560 – 1628)

Amarilli *
Bernardo STORACE

Ballo delle Battaglia *
Played by Gustavo Delgado Parra *, and Ofelia Gomez Castellanos ** (or both – 4 hands ***) on the historic organ of Cholula, (province of Puebla), Mexico.
recorded in the Our Lady of the Healing Church, Mexico 27-27/10/94 - DDD.
ALLIANCE FRANCAISE K 617 059 [61.08]


Experience Classicsonline

Certainly a disc for organ buffs. This is a collection of relatively unknown pieces by various composers, many of them also relatively unknown. They are played by two highly proficient young organists, both trained in Mexico and Holland. The disc is supported by the French Ministry of Overseas Affairs, and it has been a very worthwhile enterprise. It comes as part of a series of recordings in the "Les Chemins du Baroque." This appears to be a type of club, where, by subscribing, one can purchase numerous recordings of baroque music (choral and instrumental) and receive free gifts of boxed sets of discs.

When Mexico was originally settled by the Spanish, many churches were built to the glory of God, and of course these needed organs as part of their fabric. Originally these were imported from Europe, and because of the demand for further instruments, many organ builders operating in Mexico trained Indians to build the instruments to try to increase the level of output. So successful were they that in 1561 Phillip II of Spain issued a decree forbidding the teaching of organ building to the Indians. The reason for this was that the Indians appeared to be better at it than the Spaniards. However, by then, the genie had got out of the bottle, and breakaway organ builders were operating in Mexico.

Organ building in Europe was influenced by the great organ composers, and the designs were modified over time to suit their demands. In Mexico however, where there as no such tradition, the designs stayed much the same as they had been in the 1550s when the originals had been imported.

The Cholula organ, built in 1850 by Miguel Gregorio Castro, was restored in 1994 by the French organ restorer, Pascal Quorin. According to the sleeve note, it had not been played for about 100 years! Unlike current European instruments having multiple manuals, this organ has only a single 54 note keyboard, and uses 7 registers controlled by the left hand and a further 8 for the right hand.

This leads to a somewhat monochrome sound, and indeed when I first played this disc (at a low level) I was very disappointed with it. However, by raising the level, the true glory of the instrument is revealed. Whilst not really a disc for listening to without a break, I can recommend this to anyone who wishes to hear the sound of an early instrument which we might have thought had gone forever playing works which were contemporaneous with the basic instrument design.

The pedigree of the two organists is impeccable for this type of repertoire, the restoration of the instrument seems to have been done very expertly, and I am sure that if the repertoire and type of instrument attract you, you will not be disappointed.


John Phillips


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