Organ Sonata, Op. 65 no. 4

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Mendelssohn published his Six Organ Sonatas, Op. 65 in 1845. He had acquired a reputation as an organ player for his improvisational skills and his excellent performance of Bach's music. These qualities became evident in the organ sonatas, which were commissioned as a 'set of voluntaries' by the English publishers Coventry and Hollier in 1844. The publisher's original announcement referred to the work as Mendelssohn's School of Organ-Playing,but this title was rescinded at the composer's request. The use of the term sonata when it comes to those pieces does not refer to the classical sonata, but to the sonata as understood by bach: a collection or suite of various pieces. The sonatas include references to a number of Bach chorales. They are technically demanding pieces, and the organ must be in excellent shape to allow to perform them in a correct fashion. Mendelssohn himself declined an invitation to play the Sonatas when visiting England, arguiing that the organ was too heavy.

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