Psalm 146 / Mass No. 3 / Organ Works: Gerd Schaller / Philharmonie Festiva / Profil 2 CD Set
This new release marks the Ebrach Summer Festival's 25th anniversary and it is a marvelous collection of Bruckner's works. The most notable offering is a rare performance of Bruckner's Psalm 146 for soloists, chorus and orchestra. The two CD set also includes a superb performance of the Mass No. 3. To fill out the set, Gerd Schaller shows his skills as an organist with a selection of Bruckner's solo organ works. The winner here for me is the "Festive Music," an arrangement by Erwin Horn of the improvisational sketches that Bruckner wrote down for the wedding of the Emperor's daughter, Marie Valerie to Archduke Franz Salvadore. Bruckner performed the improvisation in 1890 at the parish church in Bas Ischl. It is full of quotes from the Vienna version of the Symphony No. 1 and is a striking organ showpiece.