An Introduction to the Organ Music of Louis Vierne

By Fournier, Carolyn Shuster | The Tracker, Summer 2007 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

An Introduction to the Organ Music of Louis Vierne


Fournier, Carolyn Shuster, The Tracker


BOOK REVIEW * An Introduction to the Organ Music of Louis Vierne, selected, annotated, and edited on three staves by Rollin Smith, Wayne Leupold Editions (WL600210), 2006, 90 p.

THIS VIERNE VOLUME IS THE FIFTH IN A SERIES ENTITLED "Annotated Performer's Editions," published by Wayne Leupold Editions. Conceived as an introduction to Vierne's organ music, the chosen works are printed in order of technical difficulty. Among well-known works, one discovers lesser-known ones, such as Vierne's Fugal Verse on In exitu Israël, his first published composition.

In his introduction, Rollin Smith, the author of the best actual reference book in English on Louis Vierne and his works (Louis Vierne, Organist of Notre-Dame Cathedral, published by Pendragon Press, Hillsdale, New York, 1999), explains that Vierne published many of his easier organ works in volumes that were destined as well for the harmonium, thereby presenting them on two staves with the indications for an intermittent obbligato pedal part. In order to render these scores more readable, they are here presented as three-stave organ music, allowing the inner voices to be distributed between the hands, in accordance with the composer's advice. In addition, suggested fingering and pedal indications help the performer achieve an elegant performance.

In a three-page description of the tonal and mechanical aspects of the Cavaillé-Coll organ, special importance is given to the hitch-down pedals that allow organists to make rapid crescendos and decrescendos. A schema of the Notre-Dame organ console is given, along with its stop list and a depiction of the console. This is followed by a section concerning the performance of Vierne's organ music, dealing -with matters of touch (legato playing is most suitable), phrasing (his lyrical and legato style), repeated notes and common notes (as with Widor and Guilmant), ritards (ending pieces with long ritards), rubato, fingering, expression, registration (especially dealing with the various ways to adapt these pieces to American organs, emphasizing the importance of carefully preparing subtle and refined crescendos and decrescendos) and tempo (one that allows extreme clarity).

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

An Introduction to the Organ Music of Louis Vierne
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?