Alk KK OF ©JanZwart P2160007-800



Hoofdwerk (C-f’’’) Bovenwerk (C-f’’’)
Bourdon M 16’ ; Prestant (vanaf c0) F 8’ Discant dubbel
Prestant M 8’ Discant dubbel         Holpijp M 8’
Roerfluit M 8’ Quintadena M 8’
Roerquint F 6’ Viola di Gamba B 8’ (C-H Quintadena 8’)
Octaaf M 4’ Gemshoorn M 4’
Roerfluit M 4’ Quintfluit M 3’
Octaaf M 2’ Nachthoorn M 2’
Sesquialter M II Dulciaan F 8’
Mixtuur M/F III-VI  
Cornet (Disc.) M IV Aangehangen pedaal (C-d’)
Trompet (Bas/Disc.) F 8’  
Tremulant over het gehele werk: M M = Müller, 1762
Manuaalkoppel: Y B = L. van den Brink, 1827*)
Windladen C-c’’’: M, laden voor cis’’’-f’’’: Y Y = Ypma, 1882
Klaviatuur, tractuur en windvoorziening: Y  F = Flentrop Orgelbouw, 2004
Toonhoogte: a’=435 Hz. Winddruk: 76 mm.  
Gelijkzwevende stemming *)Pijpwerk afkomstig van
  Garrels-orgel, Purmerend

Alk KK E ©JanZwart 1133-800                 


History and description

The 16th century organ of the Kapel Church

According to Gerhardus Havingha (1727) an organ was built in the Kapel Church in 1535 by an unknown builder. However, from a note in the ‘Memoriaelbouck voir die kerckmeesteren’ (‘memorial-book of the churchwardens’) we know that the small organ from the St. Laurens’ Church (placed above the south entrance) was sold to the ‘capellemeesteren van onser lieve vrouwen capel upte leedt’ (churchwardens of Our Ladies chapel at the ‘Laat’) in 1542. This transfer was probably carried out by Claes Willemsz. from Haarlem, who should make a new organ in the St. Laurens’ Church (above the south-entrance) in 1545. In 1661 the organ of the Kapel Church was depicted in a drawing by Pieter Jansz. Saenredam. The 16th century specification was (according to Gerhardus Havingha):

Manuaal: Prestant 6’, Holpijp 6’, Octaav 3’, Fluite 3’, Gemshoorn 1 ½’, Mixtuur III-IV

Trompet 6’, Nagtegaal (a tin Nightingale stop). Compass: F,G,A-g’’a’’


Later changes of this instrument were carried out by Jacob Jansz. Van Lin (1625), Levijn Eekman (1631, placing of the bellows from the Van Covelens-organ of St. Laurens’ Church), Jacobus van Hagerbeer (1656, removal from the northern side-aisle to the nave of the church), Johannes Duytschot (1704, enlargement from a 6’ into an 8’-instrument) and Frans Caspar Schnitger (1726, enlargement and renewal of the organ-case, wind-chest, bellows, action and  keyboard). The specification of 1726 (according to Gerhardus Havingha, 1727):


Manuaal: Prestant 8’, Quintadena 8’, Röhrfluyt 8’, Principal 4’, Röhrfluyt 4’,

Speelfluyt 4’, Quinta 3’, Octav 2’, Sifloit 1 ½’, Sexquialter II, Scherp IV, Fagot 16’,

Trompet 8’, Vox Humana 8’, Tremulant. Pull-down pedal.

Compass Manuaal:  C-c’’’, Compass Pedaal: C-d’.


It is interesting to know that, according to the contract of 1726, the Vox Humana 8’ was not made by Schnitger but ‘handed over to him by the employers’ (i.e. the mayors of Alkmaar). Did they possess the rejected old Vox Humana 8’ from St. Laurens’ Church (Bovenwerk, Duytschot 1684/85) and ordered Schnitger to re-use this stop in the Kapel Church?

In 1760 the church burnt out due to work by plumbers. The organ was completely destroyed by the fire.


1760-1762 / the building of the Müller-organ

On the 4th of December 1760 the mayors of Alkmaar signed a contract with the organ-builders Christian and Pieter Müller from Amsterdam, to build a new organ in the restored Kapel Church. It should be Christian Müller’s last opus: he died in 1763 in Amsterdam, 73 years old. The instrument was donated by lady Johanna Geertruida le Chatelain. The specification was, according to the preserved contract:

Specification of 1762

Hoofdwerk Bovenwerk
Prestant 8’ (treble doubled)        Prestant (treble) 8’ (doubled)
Bourdon 16’ Quintadena (bass) 8’
Open Fluit 8’ Roerfluit 8’
Roerquint 6’ Gemshoorn 4’
Octaaf 4’ Quintfluit 3’
Fluit 4’ Nachthoorn 2’
Superoctaaf 2’ Cornet (treble) IV
Mixtuur III-VI Dulciaan 8’
Sexquialter II  
Trompet 8’ Tremulant, Ventiel

Some definitions in the contract

Pull-down pedal Pitch: a’=415 Hz.(‘chamber-pitch’)
Compass manuals: C-c’’’ Front pipes made from pure English tin (polished)
Compass pedal: C-c’ Inner pipes: 100 pounds of led on 40 pounds of tin
4 bellows Mean-tone temperament]

In 1774 Joachim Hess from Gouda gives the following stop list (in his book: ‘Dispositien der merkwaardigsten Kerk-Orgelen…’):

Specifaction of 1774

Onderwerk Bovenwerk
Praestant 8                                  Praestant  8’
Bourdon  16’ Holpijp   8’
Rhoerfluyt  8’ Quintadena 8’
Roerquint  6’ Gemshoorn 4’
Octaav  4’ Quintfluit   3’
Fluit  4’ Nagthoorn   2’
Superoctaav  2’  Cornet discant
Sexquialtra             Dulciaan  8’
Trompet  8’  

Some differences with the contract of 1760:

-Hess doesn’t mention the doubled trebles of both Prestants 8’.

-Instead of the planned Open Fluit 8’ a Roerfluit 8’ was made.

-Hess mentions a continuous Quintadena 8’ instead of the combined Prestant 8’          treble/Quintadena 8’ bass.

-On the Bovenwerk a Holpijp 8’ was placed instead of a Roerfluit 8’.

-The division of the Trompet 8’ (bass/treble) is not mentioned by Hess.

Some characteristics:

-The Diapason chorus is placed on the Hoofdwerk, together with the Mixtuur III-VI (based on 16’ in the treble) and a continuous Sexquialter II (2 2/3’-1 3/5’).

-The Flute chorus (Holpijp, Quintadena, Gemshoorn, Quintfluit, Nachthoorn) is placed at the Bovenwerk, together with the Cornet IV (placed -as usual- at an off-note block behind the front pipes).

-The console was placed at the back side of the case (beneath the wind bellows).



The design of the organ-case

The beautiful organ-case was built after an existing design (probably by Christian Müller himself) in a classical style corresponding with the new church interior. The actual organ-case is surrounded by pillars which carry a so-called ‘fronton’ (pediment) crowned by the city-arms of Alkmaar. The inspiration for such an exceptional construction, which suggests an instrument of much larger dimensions, can be found close by: the classical organ-case designed by Jacob van Campen in the St. Laurens’ Church!

The carvings were made by the sculptors Asmus Frauen and Willem Straatman.

On an inscription at the inside of the organ-case we can read: ‘Den 16 december 1762 is dit orgel voor de eerste maal onder de Godsdienst gebruykt…’(‘On the 12th of December 1762 this organ was used in the service for the first time…’).

1784 / Renovation by Johannes Strumphler

On the 12th of July 1784 the mayors signed a contract with Johannes Strumphler to repair and change the organ on several points:

-The replacing of the Roerfluit 8’ by a Baarpijp 8’.

-The moving up of the Roerquint 6’ into a Roerfluit 8’.

-Several repairs to the pipes, conduits, wind-chests, bellows
and action.

The 19th century / repairs by A. van Gruissen (1824) and B.J. Gabry (1850), renovation by L. Ypma (1882)

According to G.H. Broekhuyzen Sr. (in his manuscript ‘Orgelbeschrijvingen’,

ca.1850-1862) the organ was repaired and cleaned in 1824 by A. van Gruissen

and in 1850 B.J. Gabry added a coupler which could be used during the playing.

At the instigation of the organists J.H.A. Ezerman (Haarlem) and J.M. Otto (Alkmaar) the organ was renovated thoroughly in 1881-82 by Lodewijk Ypma, organ-builder at Alkmaar.

Work executed by Ypma:

-4 diagonal bellows replaced by a horizontal reservoir

-The organ-case was made ca.1 meter deeper

-New console at the left side of the instrument

-Renovation of the key action, new stop action

-Compass extended from C- c’’’ to C-f’’’

-Repairs to the wind-chests

-Changes of the specification:

Hoofdwerk: + Cornet IV (from the Bovenwerk)

                      Mixtuur III-VI changed into II-III

Bovenwerk: + Viola di Gamba 8’

                      Prestant 8’ extended from c’-c’’’ to c-f’’’

Specification of 1882

(according to M.H. van ’t Kruijs: ‘Verzameling van disposities…’, Rotterdam 1885)

Hoofdmanuaal Bovenmanuaal
Bourdon 16’ Prestant 8’
Prestant 8’ Roerfluit 8’
Roerfluit 8’ Viola di Gamba 8’
Baarpijp 8’ Quintadena 8’
Octaaf 4’ Gemshoorn 4’
Roerfluit 4’ Quintfluit 3’
Octaaf 2’ Nachthoorn 2’
Sexquialter II                  Dulciaan 8'
Mixtuur II-III  
Cornet IV  
Trompet 8’ Coupler, Ventile, Tremulant

Somewhere between 1882 and 1939 the Prestant 8’ (Bovenwerk) was changed into a Salicionaal 8’.

1939-40 / Renovation by H.W. Flentrop

On account of the worsening condition of the instrument organ-builder H. W. Flentrop from Zaandam inspected the organ on request of the organist P. Brommer. After several proposals by Flentrop and Brommer a final quotation was completed at the 7th of October 1939.

A short summary of the work executed:

-Repair of the wind-chests, action and pipes

-Organ-case deepened up to the west wall of the church

-Addition of an electro-pneumatic pedal (unit-system)

-Changes of the specification:

Hoofdwerk: + Quintfluit 3’ (from Bovenwerk)

                   Trompet 8’ renewed

Bovenwerk: + Prestant 4’, Quint 1 1/3’, Scherp III, - Quintfluit 3’

                   Dulciaan 8’ renewed


Specification of 1940

Hoofdwerk Bovenwerk
Bourdon M  16’ Holpijp M   8’
Prestant M  8’  Quintadena M  8’
Roerfluit M  8’  Prestant  4’
Octaaf M   4’ Gemshoorn M   4’
Roerfluit M   4’ Nachthoorn M   2’
Quintfluit M   3’  Quint   1 ½’    
Octaaf M   2’   Scherp   III
Sesquialter M   II Dulciaan   8’
Mixtuur M   II-IV Tremulant
Cornet (treble) M   IV  
Trompet (bass/treble)   8’                 
  Couplers : HW-BW, P-HW
Pedaal (unit chest) Pitch: a’=440 Hz.
Bourdon M 32’*) Equal temperament
Bourdon M Compass manuals: C-f’’’
16’Gedekt M 8 Compass pedal : C-d’
Prestantbas 8’ Wind pressure&nbsp: 90 mm
Octaafbas 4’  
  M=Müller, 1762
*) C-c= 16’+10 2/3’  


Alk KK OP ©JanZwart 0330-800


2001 - 2004 Restoration by Flentrop Orgelbouw

From 2001 to 2004 the organ was entirely restored by Flentrop Orgelbouw, Zaandam. Starting point was the situation created by Ypma in 1882. The restoration, reconstruction and voicing of the pipework was orientated towards the large number of extant Müller-stops (see the specification after restoration). The changes of 1940 were removed. The organ case was repainted in its original colours, a combination of mahogany and marble. Thereby the instrument regained its former splendour, not only internally but also externally.


Specification of 2004

Hoofdwerk (C-f’’’) Bovenwerk (C-f’’’)
Bourdon M  16’ Prestant (from c0) F   8’ I-II
Prestant M  8’ I-II Holpijp M   8’
Roerfluit M  8’ Quintadena M   8’
Roerquint F   6’ Viola di Gamba B 8’ (C-H Quintadena 8’)
Octaaf M   4’ Gemshoorn M    4’
Roerfluit M   4’ Quintfluit M   3’
Octaaf M   2’ Nachthoorn M     2’
Sesquialter M   II Dulciaan F     8’
Mixtuur M/F    III-VI                           
Cornet (Disc.) M      IV  Pull-down pedal (C-d’)
Trompet (Bas /Disc.) F  8’                                         

M = Chr. and P. Müller, 1762

B = L. van den Brink, 1827 (from Garrels-organ, Purmerend)

Y = Ypma, 1882

F = Flentrop, 2004

Tremulant over het gehele werk: M        

Manual Coupler: Y        

Wind chests C-c’’’: M, Wind chests cis’’’-f’’’: Y              

Keyboards, action and wind-supply: Y   

Pitch: a’=435 Hz.                                                                    

Equal temperament

Wind pressure: 76 mm

©Frank van Wijk, Bergen NH, April/Mei 2000, april 2006



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