Peter Ouwerkerk: Two new organworks

by Peter Ouwerkerk | Het ORGEL | Year 95 | (1999) | Issue 26


Peter Ouwerkerk ‘Two new organworks’
het ORGEL 95 (1999), nr. 2, 22-26 [summary]

The composition contest on 20 September 1997 in theBovenkerk at Kampen was won by Saskia Macris with her composition Bevrijding [i.e.liberation]. The second price was won by Gustavo Trujillo with his composition PavanaLachrimae.

Saskia Macris (*1964) studied with DaanManneke. At the moment she studies with Theo Verbey at the Amsterdam

Gustavo Trujillo (1972) started hisstudies with Daan Manneke as well. Since 1998 he studies composition with Klaas de Vriesand Peter-Jan Wagemans, and music theory at the Rotterdam Conservatory.

The background of both compositions is a projectorganised by the Amsterdam Conservatory in 1994-1995. Students had to compose an organpiece, which had to be related to John Dowland’s Pavana Lachrimae. Furthermore, the pieceshad to comment in one way or another on the theme of 50 years of freedom (the Second WorldWar ended in 1945).

Bevrijding, Macris’s piece, has threeparts. The theme of the composition is liberation indeed: the unison introductionrepresents motionlessness and rigidness, which are followed by more part-writing, chords,dialogues, playing motives on other manuals. In fact, the ‘principal person’undergoes a transformation and is free at last.

In Trujillo’s Pavana, Sweelinck’scomposition of the same title plays a major part: the first i6 bars of Sweelincks’s Pavanaare vaguely sensed in the background throughout the entire composition. Combination withMessiaen-like portato chords, quintuplets and slowly moving impressionistic Messiaen-likeharmonies gives Trujillo’s Pavana its special quality. The project of the AmsterdamConservatory taught that composers would not readily choose the organ, because they do notreally know the instrument Considering the quality of the pieces by Macris and Trujillothe emancipation of the organ hould be stimulated more.