Jos van der Kooy (The organ at Grote of St.Bavokerk, Haarlem, Netherlands)
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Felix Mendelssohn’s six organ sonatas were published in London, Leipzig and Milan on 15 September 1845, and represent a milestone in organ literature. In these sonatas, Mendelssohn makes use of Lutheran chorales, which were also used in the compositions by Bach. Yet Mendelssohn’s approach to existing chorales is anything but traditional, in that what seems to be homophonic music is allowed to develop into a fugue, a characteristic element in the works of Mendelssohn.
The German organbuilder Christian Müller and the Amsterdam sculptor Jan van Logteren built the organ at Grote of St.Bavokerk, Haarlem in Holland in the years 1735-1738. For many years it was the largest organ in the world, with sixty stops and imposing 32-foot pedal towers. Many famous musicians and composers, including Handel, Mozart, Liszt and Mendelssohn are known to have played this instrument.
Jos van der Kooy is the resident organist of the Müller organ at St Bavo’s and of the Cavaillé-Coll organ at the Haarlem Philharmonia. Since 2007, has been organist in residence of the Gothic Hall at the Netherlands Council of State in The Hague. Van der Kooy studied organ and improvisation with Piet Kee at the Amsterdam Conservatory, and received the Prix d’ Excellence.when he graduated in 1981. Since then he has received many awards including the Tournemire Prize, and First Prize at the National Organ Improvisation Competition.
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