Next Haarlem Organ Festival
19-24 July 2021
Summer Academy postponed again, Competition continues
May 6, 2021
The corona situation in the Netherlands remains worrying. Despite a vaccination program, we still have to deal with a growing number of infections. In contrast to a few months ago, more and more young people are suffering from COVID-19. The introduction of different variants of the virus is also not reassuring. Unfortunately, the situation in the Netherlands does not differ much from that in other countries.
Faced with this situation, the board of the International Organ Festival is very sad to announce that it is irresponsible to continue the Summer Academy in 2021. The main argument is that it is still too risky to ask international students and professors to travel to Haarlem in these circumstances, and to give master classes in organ lofts with sometimes very limited space.
We are very sorry to announce this sad message for the third time. Trust that we will do everything we can to find ways to organize the Haarlem Summer Academy, which is so important to many organists from around the world. But safety is our number one priority.
We are committed to organizing the Summer Academy again in 2022, which will largely have the program as planned for 2020. All students who have registered for the Summer Academy in 2020 received a personal message from our manager Peter Ouwerkerk. All information about the Summer Academy in 2022 is now published on this website; see the Menu.
There is also good news! All concerts which were scheduled from Monday July 19 to Saturday July 24, including the Improvisation Competition, will take place in a corona proof way! See the post elsewhere on this page for more information about the Competition.
All events will be broadcast 'semi-live' from 26 to 31 July 2021, in the week after the festival on our YouTube video channel. This way all Organ Festival friends from all over the world can feel connected to Haarlem!
What is the Haarlem International Summer Academy for Organists?
The Haarlem International Summer Academy for Organists was founded in 1955 and is therefore the oldest of its kind in the world! During the last 70 years the Academy grew from 4 teachers and 10 students to the largest Summerschool in the world. Now around 100-120 students from all over the world – even from China, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, South Corea, South Africa, United States of America, Chili, Syria... – travel to Haarlem each two years to attend masterclasses and study with the most distinguished organists of this time.
A very successful Young Talent Class has been part of the Academy since 2010, an unforgettable experience for the selected participants that for some was the beginning of a professional music education and even a starting career as a concert organist. From 2022, an Excellence Class will be launched for the most talented organists, selected by professors of former Summer Academies.
The focal point of the Summer Academy is undoubtedly the world-famous Christian Müller organ (1738) in St. Bavo's Church.
21, 23 and 24 July 2021
The 2021 Improvisation Competition
The participants who are selected for the Haarlem International Organ Improvisation Competition 2021 are:
Gabriele Agrimonti (Italy)
Sebastian Benetello (Germany)
Marcel Eliasch (Germany)
Richard Fitzgerald (United States of America)
Hans van Haeften (the Netherlands)
Cyril Julien (Switzerland)
Gregor Simon (Germany)
In total 8 organists will participate in the Competition. The eighth candidate is the winner of the National Organ Competition to be held on Thursday 24 June 2021 during the Dordrecht Bach Festival. For more information, see: www.bachfestivaldordrecht.nl.