The Arp Schnitger organ in the Jacobikerk at Uithuizen by Peter van Dijk

by Peter van Dijk | Het ORGEL | Year 98 | (2002) | Issue 4

Peter van Dijk The Arp Schnitger organ in the Jacobikerk at Uithuizen
Het ORGEL 98 (2002), nr. 4, 12-19 [summary]

Uithuizen Hervormde kerk. Photo: Jan van WilligenThe Arp Schnitger organ at Uithuizen has been world famous for over 50 years now, due to the way the brothers Cor, Bernhardt and Herman Edskes, who were organists at Uithuizen for many years, promoted the organ in The Netherlands and abroad. The organ was built in 1701. It was richly decorated by Jan de Rijk (local aristocrats financed the organ). The organ was maintained by Radeker (1708, 1710), Hinsz (1747, 1785), Lohman (1800, 1811, 1830) and Van Oeckelen (1856, 1891). Especially Van Oeckelen changed the instrument: he renewed, for example, the Bourdon (which made it necessary to widen the lower case of the organ) and the Trompet, and replaced several other stops. Bernhardt Edskes restored the instrument in 1986 (Rugwerk) and 2001 (Hoofdwerk, Pedaal). Edskes reconstructed the situation of 1785. This implied that Hinsz’s manuals could be retained, as well as the manual coupler, an auxiliary that Arp Schnitger may not have built – which is a question for further investigation.
Remarkable are the stylistic accuracy and the high quality of the craftsmanship that characterise Edskes’s work. The purity of the organ is impressive, although one may ask whether Radeker or Schnitger would have aimed at it in such a detail as Edskes has done…. But that’s a question of minor importance. All in all: a well-done restoration!