One of the nice things of organ music is that each organ is unique. Every instrument is unlike every other instrument and every church with it's inherent acoustics is unlike every other church. And even on one organ you can create different sounds for one and the same composition by choosing different stops. And that's why every now and again I like to make comparisons. How sounds a composition with different choices of stops on one organ? Or how sounds a composition on different organs with more ore less the same type of choice of stops?
After the heavy lifting I've done the last few weeks with practising Vierne's Toccata, I felt like playing something less demanding. And make a comparison out of it.
Half a year ago I played Buxtehude's chorale prelude to "Ach Herr, mich armen Sünder" (BuxWV 178) on the sample set of the Schnittger organ in the St. Martini in Groningen, the Netherlands. See the post here. For comparison I decided to play it on a smaller organ in a smaller church with dryer acoustics. The effect is to hear the piece in a large city church versus to hear it in a smaller village church. The sample set is of the Hinsz organ in the village church of Midwolda. Still not a small organ, and in effect for a long time the largest village organ in the Netherlands.
Before recording the performance with the Hinsz organ I did not relisten tot my performance on the Schnittger organ. Surprisingly enough, the performance in the smaller acoustics today turned out to be slower than the performance in the larger acoustics. I would have expected it would be the other way around. As for the reason I can only guess. Perhaps it is just because of how I feel this morning and I would have played it slower on the other sample set as well. Or perhaps it is because the tremulant on this organ beats a bit slower than the one on the other organ.
I don't know. Doesn't really matter. The difference is interesting enough in itself, I think, without having to know why they turned out differently.
Here's the performance on the sampleset, made by Sonus Paradisi, of the Schittger organ in the St. Martini-kerk, Groningen (http://www.sonusparadisi.cz/en/organs/netherlands/groningen-st-martini.html).
And this is the performance of this morgnin on the sampleset, made by Sonus Paradisi, of the Hinsz organ in the Reformed church in the Midwolda (http://www.sonusparadisi.cz/en/organs/netherlands/midwolda-surround-sample-set.html).
Score available here: http://partitura.org/index.php/dietrich-buxtehude-ach-herr-mich-armen-sunder-buxwv-178