Paul Siefert (1586 - 1666) was born in Gdansk and in 1607 received a scholarship from the city council to go to Amsterdam and study with Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck, which he did from 1607 until late in 1610.
Upon his return he became assistant organist at Gdansk’s main church, St. Mary’s, and applied for the post of main organist on the post holders death in 1611 but was unsuccessful for his alleged arrogance and “sub standard” organ playing.
Siefert left Gdansk to become organist in Königsberg in 1611 and at the Royal court in Warsaw in 1616.
In 1623 he applied again for the post at St. Mary’s and this time succeeded. He returned to Gdansk and served as main organist at St. Mary’s until his death in 1666.
He is said to have been a quarrelsome fellow, frequently seeking arguments over
music with St. Mary's Kapellmeister and other composers and musicians alike.
I think this fantasia brilliantly displays Sweelinck's influence on Siefert.
But equally I smile when playing this piece as I think that a touch of his quarrelsome personality is coming through in the middle bit of this piece.
With so many thirds in this piece I just HAD to play it in mean tone temperament :-)
I tried my best with the tempo but still can't stop myself from slowing down noticeably for the page turn onto the third page despite the part writing neatly fitting into one hand.
I may do a new recording including video once if I improve playing that section.
A very big and special thanks to my organ teacher Keith who helped me a lot with working out fingerings in some sections and also his advice on dealing with the erratic middle voice which keeps switching between the hands back and forth.
This is most likely my last upload before my house move in about a month's time.