Kauffmann’s Harmonische Seelenlust: an undervalued resource for registration and performance practice?

Kauffmann’s Harmonische Seelenlust was published in instalments through subscription from 1733 until 1740. It contains 98 preludes on 63 chorales, and 66 figured chorales, which are embellished with interludes and flourishes between phrases; six preludes have an obbligato part for oboe. Kauffmann gives detailed directions for registration, tempi, phrasing, articulation, and expressive ‘affect’ to a degree that is unusual for German organ music of this period.

Christopher Kent discusses the registrations in the context of the two Merseburg organs with which Kauffmann would have been familiar, and comments on the relevance to modern organists on modern instruments.



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