Markus Kühnis (organ of Kloster Engelberg)
This release (the latest in Willowhayne Records' Experience series) showcases the organ in the abbey at Engelberg, Switzerland. Built by Goll and restored by Graf, this instrument comprises 9000 pipes, spread over four manuals with 137 stops. Among Markus Kühnis' teachers were Jean Langlais and Hans Vollenweider. This new album is a welcome departure from a traditional organ programme, being instead a collection of the artist's own transcriptions, all of which are played with astonishing virtuosity and are guaranteed to make the listener smile. There is something here for everyone from Rossini's William Tell Overture to Mexican dances.
Sheet music of the repertoire on this recording will be published by Willowhayne Publishing shortly.
Gioachino Rossini: Overture "William Tell"
Johann Sebastian Bach: Sheep May Safely Graze, BWV 208
Antonín Dvořák: Slavonic Dance in G minor, Op.46 No.8
Georges Bizet: Jeux d'enfants
Petit mari, petite femme
John Philip Sousa: The Washington Post
Johann Sebastian Bach: Badinerie (Orchestral Suite No.2 in B minor), BWV 1067
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: Flight of the Bumblebee (Tale of Tsar Sultan)
Genaro Codina: Marcha de Zacatecas
Manuel Ponce: Intermezzo No.1
Zequinha de Abreu: Tico-Tico no fubá
Manuel Ponce: Gavota
John Philip Sousa: The Stars and Stripes Forever
Kenneth J. Alford / Raymond Lefèvre: Colonel Bogey and the Gendarmes of St Tropez
George Frideric Handel: Music for the Royal Fireworks
José Pablo Moncayo: Huapango
Louis Moreau Gottschalk: Tournament Galop
All transcriptions by Markus Kühnis
Recorded in Engelberg Abbey, Engelberg, Switzerland on 9th-11th October 2019
Design: Willowhayne Records
Console Assistant: Mandy Balsdon
Recording Engineering & Editing: Mark Hartt-Palmer
Recording Producers: Mark Hartt-Palmer & John Balsdon
Total Time: 72.13
Release Date: February 2021
The Swiss Organist Markus Kühnis studied piano with Eduard Hug and organ with Hans Vollenweider at the Musikakademie in Zürich (known today as the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste). He subsequently studied with Jean Langlais and Gaston Litaize in Paris, as well as Franz Lehrndorfer In Munich. He was the organist at the church at Näfels in Switzerland from an early age, and has held the post of organist at the Parish of Emmen since 1996.
Markus has played as concert organist in many well-known venues across the globe, including solo recitals at the international organ festivals in Prague, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Tirgu Murres, Kulmbach and Magadino. He has given many recitals in the cathedrals of Soissons, Geneva, St Gallen and St Albans, as well as churches across Europe.
Inspired by rock groups from the 70s, Markus was, as a teenager, already interested in bringing other types of music to his organ playing. This interest has resulted in his numerous transcriptions of both popular and classical repertoire for the instrument. Rather than his transcriptions being simple copies of the original compositions, they are true transcriptions that reflect the musical and technical characteristics of the organ, as is demonstrated on this recording.
WHR066 View Booklet