With the support
of the alderman
for Culture
in the city
of Brussels

 

Organs

Our lady of laeken church

laeken’s
summer festival

  • Schijven - Van Bever 1874-1912 Large Organ

    The royal church of our Lady in Laeken (one of the districts of Brussels), a few hundred meters away from the royal palace, was built in the nineteenth century and is dedicated to Louise-Marie, first Queen of the Belgians. It was inaugurated on August 7, 1862 and contains the Royal Crypt. The choir of the original thirteenth century church is in early Gothic style and is in the cemetery where numerous well-known personalities are buried. They include, the playwright Michel de Ghelderode, the architect Poelaert (who not only conceived this neo-gothic church but also Brussels gigantic Palais de justice) as well as the violinist Charles de Bériot and his wife, the famous opera singer, Maria Malibran.

     

    The first organ for the largest neo-gothic church in Belgium was ordered in 1870 from the German organ-builder Joseph Merklin, established in Brussels since 1843, just before he moved to Paris, leaving the Brussels workshop to his foreman Pierre Schyven, who built the Laeken instrument from 1871 to 1874. It is the most important Schyven organ after the instrument built for the Antwerp cathedral in 1890 (IV/90). The specification of the instrument (III/51) is given in the 90 pages brochure published in 1892 and is printed on this page. A letter from the organ-builder, written in 1900 indicates that the Cor anglais of the Positif was indeed an Ophicléide 16, and the Clairon harmonique 4 was a Cor 16.

     

    The Schyven organ was dedicated on November 1874. King Léopold II attended the concert given by two former students of Jacques-Nicolas Lemmens: Alphonse Mailly and Alexandre Guilmant. The monumental organ case was built by Goyers of Louvain, on plans drawn by Joseph Poelart. It is know to us by only two original photos and by the coloured lithography reproduced in this calendar. It lasted only 37 years: the architects leading the pursuit of the construction of the church tower insisted on seeing the rose window behind the organ case, and it was decided to remodel the instrument to answer satisfy their demands.

     

    The Laeken organ-builder Salomon Van Bever, who already worked on the organ in 1901, dismantled the instrument in 1908 and rebuilt it three years later, with a new, much less impressive case, which is reproduced here from an ancient postcard. The instrument, still in function today, has been slightly modified (III/53) but the original aesthetic was respected by Van Bever, and the Laeken instrument is one of the most important large romantic organs in Belgium.

  • Disposition

    I. Positif (56 notes)

     

    Quintaton 16

    Flûte 8

    Dulciane 8

    Unda Maris 8

    Gambe 8

    Bourdon 8

    Flûte 4

    Quinte 3

    Mixture III (dessus)

    Trompette céleste 8

    Clarinette 8

    Musette 8

    Pédale (30 notes)

     

    Sous-Basse 32

    Flûte 16

    Bourdon 16

    Quinte 12

    Flûte 8

    Violoncelle 8

    Flûte 4

    Bombarde 16

    Trompette 8

    Clairon 4

    II. Grand-orgue (56 notes)

     

    Montre 16

    Bourdon 16

    Montre 8

    Flûte harmonique 8

    Gemshorn 8

    Salicional 8

    Gambe 8

    Bourdon 8

    Prestant 4

    Flûte harmonique 4

    Doublette 2

    Fourniture 2 (III - VI)

    Grand Cornet V

    Bombarde 16

    Ophicléide 16

    Trompette 8

    Clairon 4

    III. Récit expressif

     

    Bourdon 16

    Gambe 8

    Flûte octaviante 8

    Dolce 8

    Voix céleste 8

    Bourdon 8

    Flûte d’écho 4

    Flageolet 2

    Fourniture III

    Basson 16

    Trompette harmonique 8

    Basson-Hautbois 8

    Voix humaine 8

    Clairon harmonique 4

    Accouplements et Tirasses

     

    Réunion du Récit au Positif

    Réunion du Positif au Grand-Orgue

    Réunion du Récit au Grand-Orgue

    Octave grave au Grand-Orgue

    I / P, II / P, III / P

  • Van Bever 1907 Choir Organ

    The Choir organ was built in 1907 by the Van Bever brothers. It was restored in 1996 by Etienne De Munck. This instrument perfectly allows an harmonious with the Large organ on the west end.

  • Disposition

    I. Grand-orgue (56 notes)

     

    Montre 8

    Flûte Harmonique 8

    Gambe 8

    Bourdon 8

    Prestant 4

    II. Récit (56 notes)

     

    Bourdon 16

    Cor de Nuit 8

    Salicional 8

    Voix Céleste 8

    Eoline 4

    Octavin 2

    Trompette 8

    Tremolo

    Pédale (30 notes)

     

    Soubasse 16

    Flûte 8

    Expression pour tous les jeux sauf Montre 8 et Prestant 4

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