The Organ, from Sweelinck to Bach

History of the organ

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An exciting history of the unique instrument

The organ is one of the oldest, most complex and most glorious musical instruments known to man. The four-part series tells the history of this magnificent instrument, displaying the beauty of the sound it produces, the wealth of music written for it, the craftsmanship involved in building such a complicated and often ornate structure and the wonderful settings in which it has come to reside.

Volume 2: From Sweelinck to Bach

Focusing on the influence of the great German school of organ builders in Northern Europe, this episode was filmed in The Netherlands and Germany. With the advent of the Lutheran reforms in the church, the organ became an increasingly widespread and important part of religious worship. The development of organ music from Sweelinck, the 'maker of organists', through Buxtehude to the golden age, in which the genius of Johann Sebastian Bach is highlighted, is shown.


Gustav Leonhardt
Bernard Foccroulle
Hans Heintze

Featuring music by

Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck
Dietrich Buxtehude
Matthias Weckmann
Johann Sebastian Bach

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