Burgmann Gustafsson Marianne

Master of Music, Sibelius Academy 1998

Degree of Master of Fine Arts, Major; Concert Performance of Organ, Luleå University of Technology 2012



Marianne Gustafsson Burgmann: In Josef Gabriel Rheinberger's company ‒ a study tour in the esthetics of the German romantic organ music

Abstract of the concert series plan

Josef Rheinberger (1839‒1901) was a very well-known composer and highly appreciated pedagogue in Europe in the 19th century. In a time when the new musical esthetics with new musical ideas expanded in Germany, his music bears a heritage of rhetorical music. The focus of my doctoral concerts is Josef Rheinberger’s organ music, in relation to the past (the tradition), his contemporaries (the Old and the New German schools), and the future (especially Max Reger’s music, which represents the new musical esthetics). Another topic in my doctoral concerts is the organ sonata as a genre. Rheinberger developed the form of the organ sonata by composing 20 of them. One sonata by different composers is included in all of the five concerts. The goal of my artistic research is to bring Rheinberger’s music to public attention and, as a performer, to differentiate and find new possibilities for the performance of the early and late romantic style.

Abstract of the written thesis

My written thesis is closely linked to my doctoral concerts. The relationship between non legato and legato playing is one of the most important questions in organ playing, because of the lack of accentuation by dynamic touch. When playing and analysing Rheinberger’s organ works, I search for similarities and differences between other Old German school composers’ (such as Mendelssohn, Brahms, Merkel) organ music, and try to find out some general principles in phrasing, accentuation and articulation which could help the performer in his task, especially when there is no information in the score. I try to create the context for these principles with the help of piano and organ schools and also with the philosophical and music theoretical writings of the time. The results of the research may be of interest not only to organ players, but also to musicians in general.