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private38 003Photo credit: Don Hunstein Portrait of E. Power Biggs (1906-1977)

One of the world’s renowned organists was a British born musician who came to the United States, and almost single handedly elevated the organ into a concert instrument.

Biggs refused to play on an electronic organ, and was instrumental through his music in the rebuilding of old church organs that were still to be found throughout Europe. Tremendous damage was done to many churches in the 20th Century, during the two World Wars and subsequent events.

The spire of the Freiburg im Breisgau Gothic Cathedral Tower (also called “Munster”) because of its intricate open lattice type sandstone construction withstood the severe bombing of November 1944 by the Allies of the town and surrounding areas.

The famous Swiss art and culture historian and author Jacob Burckhardt (1918-1897) called this tower one of the world’s most beautiful specimen of the 13th Century.

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The particular record shown above in this post is a 1975 Columbia Record M33514 produced by Andrew Kardin with E. Power Biggs playing the four Antiphonal Organs in the Freiberg Cathedral in Germany simultaneously. Here are the comments by E. Power Biggs from the back of this record and the respective soundtracks.



The Roman Catholic Cathedral in Freiburg  or “Munster” has a fascinating complex building history. Below in the Youtube upload you will be able to hear the organs on another record with Bach toccatas and fugues played by E. Power Biggs (Columbia M32933). A very good link for those who would like to visit Cathedrals for religious services or just to admire the architecture and to understand the spread of the Roman Catholic Faith throughout the centuries is here.