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La Révolte des Orgues, 30 September in Duomo, 9 organs together for a great choral concert

The restoration of the Organ continues thanks to the support of all donors and some important supporters such as Intesa Sanpaolo, Fondazione Bracco and Zucchetti

Foto Organo Andrea Cherchi
16 September Sep 2021 1310 16 September 2021

On Thursday, 30 September 2021 at 8.30pm, Milan Duomo will host a unique concert on the international stage: La Révolte des Orgues.

An unprecedented performance that includes an international cast of organists and musicians coming from Europe’s most important Cathedrals and the installation of an avant-garde instrument: a portable modular pipe organ, with five keyboards, that will add to the four pipe organs of Milan Duomo, the protagonist of a huge restoration project that is still in progress.

Admission to the concert will be free, with the Green Pass being mandatory, subject to availability, via booking on this page starting from 21 September.

The event takes place in the wake of the International Year of the Organ, to which the German Music Council named 2021. This was the inspiration for organising an International Festival that would bring together the world’s best organists, organ builders, young contemporary composers, enthusiasts, and new talent all on one large, international, digital stage, to celebrate the “King of Instruments”: the Organ, whose music and construction have recently been named an Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO.

The name of the concert that is to take place in Duomo on 30 September is La révolte des Orgues and refers to the work by the celebrated French composer and organist Jean Guillou, who died two years ago in Paris, and is written for nine organs, percussion, and conductor. It is no coincidence that this is a revolutionary composition, as can been seen from the title itself, where, for the first time, the organ becomes the protagonist and goes beyond its traditional role of accompanying the liturgy. This will be the common thread of the evening, where the sound becomes bold and magnificent, enhancing the complexity and majesty of an instrument long-established both historically and traditionally.

The concert programme, under the direction of Johannes Skudlik, includes the participation of important international organists and musicians, including Hansjörg Albrecht from Münchener Bach-Chor, Martin Baker from Westminster Cathedral, Christian Benning on percussion from the University of Music and Performing Arts in Munich, Giulio Bonetto, Organist in Residence at the Church of San Fermo Maggiore in Verona, Roberto Bonetto, Professor of the Conservatory of Music in Verona, Omar Caputi, Organist in Residence at the Santuario di Santa Rita in Turin, Juan de la Rubia, Organist in Residence at the Sagrada Família in Barcelon, and Emanuele Carlo Vianelli, Organist in Residence at Milan Duomo, with the participation of the recitalists Martin Kovarik (Zurich), Marco Lo Muscio (Rome) and Paolo Oreni (Treviglio).

The music will range from works, known and adapted for the occasion, by Johann Sebastian Bach, which will open with the Fugue in G major, interpreted alone by Maestro Emanuele Carlo Vianelli, proceeded by Boléro sur un thème de Charles Racquet by Pierre Cochereau, which will underline the profound difference in sound of one single organ compared to that of an organ concert. Following this, the Concerto for four harpsichords and orchestra in the version for five organs and the Toccata and Fugue in D minor by Johann Sebastian Bach, before concluding with La Révolte des Orgues by Jean Guillou.

An enthusiastic musical event that will be an opportunity to renew the Veneranda Fabbrica’s constant commitment to the restoration of the Duomo Organ, started in 2019 and possible thanks to the contribution from small and large donors to the 15,800 Notes for the Duomo project.

Even by allocating your 5x1000 to Milan Duomo, you can contribute to the restoration of the Organ: a free gesture that costs nothing.

This concert is also possible thanks to the technical sponsor Pontificia Fabbrica d'organi Comm. Giovanni Tamburini.

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PROGRAMME

La Révolte des Orgues
Thursday 30 September 2021 at 8.30pm
Duomo di Milano

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Fuga alla Gigue sol Maggiore BWV 577
Emanuele Vianelli

Pierre Cochereau (1924-1984)
Bolero sur un thème de Charles Racquet
Hansjörg Albrecht, Martin Baker, Christian Benning, percussioni, Giulio Bonetto, Roberto Bonetto, Omar Caputi, Juan de la Rubia, Martin Kovarik, Marco Lo Muscio, Paolo Oreni

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Concerto per 4 clavicembali e orchestra nella versione per 5 organi BWV 1065 / Allegro-Andante-Allegro
Hansjörg Albrecht, Martin Baker, Juan de la Rubia, Martin Kovarik, Paolo Oreni

Improvvisazione
Martin Baker, Juan de la Rubia

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Toccata e Fuga re minore BWV 565
Hansjörg Albrecht, Martin Baker, Giulio Bonetto, Roberto Bonetto, Omar Caputi, Juan de la Rubia, Martin Kovarik, Marco Lo Muscio, Paolo Oreni

Jean Guillou (1930-2019)
La Révolte des Orgues pour neuf organistes, percussion et directeur
Hansjörg Albrecht, Christian Benning, percussioni, Martin Baker, Giulio Bonetto, Roberto Bonetto, Omar Caputi, Juan de la Rubia, Martin Kovarik, Marco Lo Muscio, Paolo Oreni

DIARY OF THE WORKSITES

An update on the restoration of Milan Duomo’s Organ

Time, care, energy, passion: the four fundamental ingredients that underlie the restoration of Milan Duomo. The Organ’s worksite, in particular, embraces them all.

This restoration is possible thanks solely to the constant work of the Veneranda Fabbrica, begun in 2019 and that still continues today thanks to the contribution of small and large donors, including Intesa Sanpaolo, the main sponsor of the restoration, Fondazione Bracco and Zucchetti, a company that this year joins as supporter of the 15,800 Notes for the Duomo project. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility is also contributing to the restoration.

In the last year – despite the forced interruption caused by the global pandemic – specialist workers from the Veneranda Fabbrica and the workshops we have relied on for the restoration of some specific phonic, mechanical, and artistic parts of this musical giant, have not stopped, while specific and targeted interventions on the instrument have been carried out with great commitment.

With the gradual reopening of the worksites in May, after a general inspection of the Organ, the company Colzani organi snc, winner of the bid announced by the Veneranda Fabbrica in 2019, took care of the disassembly of the pipes of the northern body, many of which have been transported to the workshop for repairs. At the same time, restoration of all the bellows has also been carried out, using over 500 square feet of leather. The real novelty, however, concerns above all the new computerised management system of the instrument, truly avant-garde, which will be used to connect the new console (currently in production) to the organ, and will allow the operational problems related to the age of the electromechanical components to be overcome. By the end of the year, the new console with five keyboards will arrive in Duomo and finally the Organ will set off towards its new “digital” life. In fact, the analogue connections will be abandoned and switched to fibre signal commands. The console was designed in collaboration with the Duomo’s Master Organists and artisans directly involved from Germany.

Extraordinary maintenance is currently being carried out on the bodies of the organ found in the Renaissance casings, such as the general cleaning of the pipes, and the reshaping and repairing of the façade pipes, including the retuning.

The restoration of the wooden casings will soon finish with the work on the more complex decorations of the friezes, taking care not to produce dust or debris so as not to affect the harmonisation of the restored pipes and the complex tuning work, carried out at night for maximum silence. Once the restorers have finished their interventions, the scaffolding can be completely disassembled, and the organ builder can review the tuning again: this will be the last task on the Northern Organ.

Following on from this first set of complex work, the restoration of the gigantic altarpiece (almost 7x3 metres), which decorates one of the two, large doors that close the 16th-century northern body will be completed. “The Transport of the Holy Ark” by Giuseppe Meda will return to Duomo after a long restoration that has included the dusting and restoration of all parts of the painting at risk of detachment, the dismantling of the enormous frame, the relining, and the various chemical treatments on the canvas. Through a new tensioning system, it will then be possible to obtain a new and safer tensioning of the door.

The fundraising project 15,800 Notes for the Duomo therefore came about from the real need to raise funds in support of this musical giant, heritage of art and mechanics, respecting the centuries-old musical tradition of the Cathedral. A job possible thanks to proceeds from 5x1000 for Milan Duomo: a free gesture that costs nothing.

Follow the work on the Organ at duomomilano.it

Support 15,800 Notes for the Duomo

For further information:
Duomo Info Point
Piazza Duomo 14/a - 20122 Milano
Tel.+39.02.72023375
info@duomomilano.it