Bach in 19th-century Costume
"Van Doeselaar knows how to handle the coaxing force of the Concertgebouw organ," says reviewer Frits van der Waa in the Volkskrant of 17 July 2006.
Amsterdam, Thu, 9. Nov 2006 — In the Volkskrant of 17 July 2006 Frits van der Waa gives high praise to Van Doeselaar for his execution of 19th-century arrangements of compositions by J.S. Bach in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw.
"Artistically inspired as he is, organist Leo van Doeselaar almost transformed his performance in the Concertgebouw into an effervescent show, possibly because his doings on the three manuals of the organ were constantly watched by a videocamera," van der Waa continues. "Apart from the encore the whole programme consisted of works by Bach arranged by Romantic composers, a style that suits the Maarschalkerweerd organ best.
Notwithstanding occasional exuberant effects and abrupt contrasts the arrangers first of all were subservient to the work of the Great Master. So was Van Doeselaar himself when he poured a romantic sauce over the Toccata and Fugue in D minor. But the artist is familiar with the mores of how to execute Baroque music. The organ may thunder and revel, like in Max Reger's arrangement of the Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue, but thanks to Van Doeselaar's lively articulation and flexible handling of the relation between light and heavy measures the result remained transparent and dancing.
In Liszt's arrangement of the Prelude and Fugue over B-A-C-H Van Doeselaar had his hands full to manage the intricate knotwork of musical lines, but the result was a majestic performance that did full justice to the instrument's opulence."