The last of an eight month-long series if organ recitals of works composed by Bach will be performed Sunday evening at 8 p.m. at Washington's Christ Lutheran Church.
The last concert will feature the small Lutheran masses, the difficult and challenging program of the more than 200 works performed during the series, according to Christ Lutheran organist Maureen Jais-Miek.
The series, which began in January, is the first time that Washingtonians have had the opportunity to hear Bach's organ compositions played on an organ very similar to the one that Bach played. The church's 45-rank organ was built in Germany and purchased in 1969 for approximately $60,000 with funds made available by the remortgaging the church.
The series was made possible thanks to money raised by patrons any donations. Three noted organists participated on a rotating basis and all were paid for their services. "We are dedicated to paying musicians," stressed Jais-Mick.
The church, which recently celebrated its 80th anniversary, has always had a concert series featuring varied music. This year, however, it was decided that it was time to make maximum use of the special organ, called a mechanical action or "tracker" organ. Connections from the keys to the pipes are made manually by the organist rather than by electro-magnets. "In the hands of a good organist, it is the difference between playing a machine and playing a sensitive instrument," said Jais-Mick.
The organist for this Sunday's concert is Geoffrey Simon, former organist at Christ Lutheran, currently organ-choirmaster at the National Methodist Church and a former student of Anton Heiller of the Vienna Academy of Music. Admission is free. Christ Lutheran is located at 5105 16th St. NW.