The Weishaupt organ of the parish church of St. Mauritius


The parish church of St. Mauritius in Wiesentheid received a new organ in the course of the large-scale interior renovation of the important Balthasar Neumann Church, which was ceremoniously inaugurated in 2017. There were a number of challenges to overcome in planning the instrument: On the one hand, it was necessary for reasons of monument protection to keep the beautiful baroque facade from 1730 in place, which originally housed a typical southern German instrument of its time: a single-manual instrument with sixteen stops by the organ builder Johann Ignatz Samuel Will. On the other hand, in this rather modest space, an organ was to be created that would meet the requirements of 21st century church music, both liturgical and concert. The organ-building firm of Georg Weishaupt (Ellgau near Augsburg) succeeded in planning and finally building an instrument under these conditions that meets precisely these requirements: The Hauptwerk is housed entirely in the area of the historic manual movement (behind the front pipes), the Schwellwerk is behind it, and the Pedalwerk is housed in a slim arrangement at the side of the Schwellwerk (smaller pipes are also partly under the Schwellwerk). The disposition of the instrument represents a symbiosis of the historically grown stop stock and newly built pipe ranks. Pipes from the 18th century (Will and Seuffert) as well as from the 19th century (Hochrein), which were integrated in the various predecessor organs, could find a meaningful use in the new organ. Some stops from the previous organ (20th century) could also be taken over. The rest of the pipework was newly made. With 34 stops, this organ is the largest ever built in the parish church in Wiesentheid. With its many tonal colours, the instrument offers numerous possibilities for use: The support of congregational singing, the accompaniment of soloists and choirs, the interpretation of organ works from the past and present all this and much more is possible on this organ with much joy and inspiration to the praise of God. ©Christian Stegmann

I. Manual: Hauptwerk (key range C to g"')
1. Stillgedeckt 16' new
2. principal 8' historical stock, prospect pipes (18th century)
3. traverse flute 8' historical stock (19th century)
4. Copel 8' historical stock (18th century)
5. quintade 8' historical stock (18th century)
6. Salicional 8' old stock (20th century)
7. Octave 4' new
8. pointed flute 4' new
9. fifth 2 2/3' new
10. Forest Flute 2' new
11. piccolo 1' old (20th century)
12. Mixture 4f 2' new
13. Cornett 5f 8' new, from g
14. Trumpet 8' new
Coupler II-I
Koppel Sub II-I
Coupler Super II-I

Manual: Swell (key range C to g"')
15. Weitgedeckt 8' new
16. gamba 8' new
17. Vox coelestis 8' old (20th century)
18. harmony flute 4' new, metal, from c' overblowing
19. Nasard 2 2/3' new
20. superoctave 2' old stock (20th century)
21. Third 1 3/5' new
22. fifth 1 1/3' pre-mixture
23. mixture 4f 1 1/3' new
24. bassoon oboe 8' new
Koppel Sub II-II
Koppel Super II-II

Pedalboard (key range C-f')
25. principal bass 16' historical stock (19th century)
26. subbass 16' historical stock (19th century)
27. 16' tender bass transmission from Hauptwerk
28. octave bass 8' new
29. covered bass 8' new (extension of sub-bass 16')
30. violoncello 8' transmission from Hauptwerk
31. chorale flute 4' new
32. chorale bass 4' transmission from Hauptwerk
33. contra trombone 16' new
34. trombone 8' new (octave extension of contra trombone 16')
Coupler I-Ped
Coupler II-Ped
Koppel Super II-Ped
Tuning: Bach-Kellner
Playing aids: Setzer system with sequencer, stop action, mechanical manual coupler


Johann Sebastian Bach is probably the most famous composer of the European late baroque. He left behind well over a thousand compositions in almost every genre common at the time. With his organ compositions, he exhausted the technical possibilities of the instruments of his time. One of Bach's most famous and effective organ works is the Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV 565, probably composed between 1703 and 1707 in Arnstadt, where Bach was employed as organist at the New Church during this period. As court organist in Weimar (1708-1717), Bach became acquainted with scores of instrumental concertos by Italian composers, which presumably were brought back from a journey by the music-loving Prince Johann Ernst. Bach transferred five such concertos to the organ, including the Concerto for Two Violins in A minor by Antonio Vivaldi. With its varied and imaginative three movements and Bach's transfer to the organ, this concerto is an outstanding testimony to successful composition and transcription.

Johann Pachelbel, born in Nuremberg, returned to his native city after stations in Vienna, Eisenach, Erfurt, Stuttgart and Gotha, where he completed his career as organist at the Sebaldus Church. He was and still is famous for his numerous compositions for keyboard instruments (preludes, toccatas, variation works, chorale arrangements and many more). The chorale partita on "Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan" is from Pachelbel's collection "Musicalische Sterbens-Gedancken", published in Erfurt in 1683. It shows in an exemplary manner various possibilities of how a chorale can be figurated and varied in a diversified manner.

Justin Heinrich Knecht was born in the Swabian town of Biberach, where he worked as a music director from the age of 20, except for two years in Stuttgart. Here he worked as an organist and music teacher as well as organising performances and concerts. Alongside this, he composed primarily musical comedies and operas and rendered outstanding services to the development of musical life in Biberach. He also wrote a "Complete Organ School" in three volumes (published 1795-1798), which includes the Little Flute Concerto in F major.

Alexandre Guilmant was one of the outstanding composers and organists in 19th century France. He was able to make use of the symphonic possibilities of the organ that had emerged in this period, while at the same time preserving the strict, classical musical forms (sonata, fugue, etc.). Guilmant was an admirer of the music of George Friedrich Händel, which can be seen, among other things, in the fact that he used themes from Händel as the basis for his own compositions. The "Marche sur un theme de Haendel" played here, with its fugue in the middle section, takes as its thematic basis the choral movement "Lift up your heads" from the oratorio "The Messiah".

Josef Gabriel Rheinberger was born in Vaduz (Liechtenstein) in 1839. At the age of seven, he was already serving as organist in his hometown. At the age of 12 he went to the conservatory in Munich. In 1854 Rheinberger became deputy organist at the parish church of St. Ludwig, and in 1857 court organist at the Theatinerkirche (St. Kajetan). From 1859 he also gave piano lessons at the conservatory. In 1863 he became court organist at the court church of St. Michael. In 1867 Rheinberger was appointed professor of organ and composition at the newly founded music school. He held this post until shortly before the end of his life. Rheinberger's fame was primarily due to his organ music, including his 20 organ sonatas. The Cantilene in F major is the second movement of Rheinberger's 11th organ sonata and, due to its melodic beauty, is one of the most famous organ movements by Rheinberger.

Luis Vierne grew up in Paris and received his musical education there. After working as an assistant at the church of Saint-Sulpice in Paris, he was appointed organist at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris in 1900 at the age of 30. His compositional style is closely associated with the orchestral sound possibilities of the great Cavaille-Coll organ of Notre Dame, which is strongly reflected in his organ compositions. The Scherzo from his 2nd Organ Symphony, composed in 1902/03, is a virtuosic and elegant work in which Vierne's handling of the tonal possibilities of the organ is exemplary. The French lullaby "Do do, l'enfant do", which is about as well known in France as "Schlaf, Kindlein, schlaf" is the basis of the simple, calm Berceuse (lullaby). The work comes from Vierne's 1913 collection "24 Pieces en style libre op. 31" ("24 Pieces in Free Style"), which can be performed on the organ as well as on the harmonium. The concluding improvisation is based on the patron saint song of the parish church in Wiesentheid.

The song "Sankt Mauritius, edler Held" is always sung at Kirchweih (around 22 September) in honour of Saint Mauritius. Neither the author nor the composer of this song are known. The only known fact is its origin in Augsburg.

Christian Stegmann studied church music at the Robert-Schumann-Hochschule in Düsseldorf, where he passed his A exam in 2002 (improvisation with distinction). His teachers included

Wolfgang Seifen (improvisation), Prof. Hans-Dieter Möller (literature playing and improvisation) and Prof. Raimund Wippermann (choral and orchestral conducting). From 2002 to 2004 Christian Stegmann studied in a postgraduate programme with Prof. Daniel Roth (Frankfurt/Paris) to further deepen and round out his skills in artistic organ playing. He completed master classes (organ literature playing and improvisation) with Almut Rössler, Phillippe Levebre, Jon Laukvik, Loic MaiIle, Pierre Pincemaille, Peter Planyawsky and Anders Bondemann, among others. Courses with Eric Ericsson, Frieder Bernius, Gary Graden and others have broadened his knowledge of choral conducting.

Since 2003 Christian Stegmann has been cantor at St. Johannes in Kitzingen as well as regional cantor in the diocese of Würzburg. He is the initiator and artistic director of the series "Organ Music at Market Time" in Kitzingen as well as the director of the St. Johannes church choir and the choirs he founded, the St. Johannes Chamber Choir, Youth Choir and Children's Choir. As an organist and choirmaster, he is very active in concerts. In 2012, together with his colleague Carl Friedrich Meyer, he was awarded the Culture Prize of the City of Kitzingen.

Recorded, arranged and produced by Franz Kramer, jfk-music-studios.
Further information:

If you would like to purchase the CD, please contact the parish in Wiesenthied by email:
Contact: Mr. Paul Schug:,