The ‘artistically inherent motivation’ of organ music (discussion, part 2) by Jacob Lekkerkerker

by Jacob Lekkerkerker | Het ORGEL | Year 98 | (2002) | Issue 2

Jacob Lekkerkerker The ‘artistically inherent motivation’ of organ music (discussion, part 2)
Het ORGEL 98 (2002), nr. 2, 40-42 [summary]

Peter Ouwerkerk and Sietze de Vries reacted in het ORGEL 2002/1 to Hans Fidom’seditorial in het ORGEL 2001/6. Fidom had argued for improvisation in the style ofone’s own time. Peter Ouwerkerk thought that the ‘artistically inherentmotivation’ of an interpretation and the role of the organist deserve attention: inhis opinion, the organist is an artist. He also is convinced that there is basically nodifference between organ art and other art forms. Sietze de Vries argued strongly tointerpret organplaying as a craft. As a consequence, improvising in ancient styles shouldbe stimulated.

Jacob Lekkerkerker points out that organists are artists indeed: they have a‘musical intuition’, and listen ‘categorically’, whereas musicologistslisten ‘systematically’ . An organist will therefore build up his vocabularyfirst. This will in turn determine the character of his interpretations of ancient musicas well as that of his improvisations. To Lekkerkerker, improvising in ancient styles isfirst and foremost a means to explore a musical territory and to demonstrate organs:‘How could copying be a goal in itself? A painter would never go on imitating hismodels all his life either, would he?’ Lekkerkerker: ‘What I strive for when Iimprovise at a concert or a contest, is to give a report of my relation with the musicalpast at that very moment.’