top of page

Summer 2020 Virtual

SMIA Conference

French Classical Organ Registration

Conventions and Performance Practices


Dr. David Baskeyfield

Organ & Improvisation

This presentation is given in response to our recent situation in which many organists were shut out of churches and sought pieces to be practiced at home on a piano or keyboard. An extremely rich part of this repertoire is that of France from the 17th century to the Revolution. It is sufficiently remote a tradition to have two particular implications for the players nowadays: the idiosyncrasies of the tradition can make it intimidating to explore; and it is so dependent on these particular idiosyncrasies to lose its character completely if they are not observed. The various kinds of pieces in the tradition are governed by a relatively strict set of registration conventions - in fact each kind of registration generates its own style of piece. David Baskeyfield will give a survey of the kinds of pieces generally found in any given Suite or Mass and an explanation of the registrations they require.

bottom of page