John Vandertuin

JohnVandertuin2Blind from birth, John Vandertuin began studies in music at the Ontario School for the Blind in Brantford, Ontario. He continued studying with Jean Langlais in Paris and later with Piet Kee at Amsterdam’s Sweelinck Conservatorium. Other organ teachers have included John McIntosh, Larry Cortner, and Robert Glasgow. Active as a composer and recitalist, he has won several competitions as well, including first prize in the Improvisation category of the National Healey Willan Organ Competition (1980) and second prize in the San Anselmo (California) Improvisation Competition (1987, 89). He was invited twice to compete in the International Improvisation Competition in Haarlem, the Netherlands, one of only two Canadians ever to receive this invitation.

John Vandertuin – Entry in the 33rd Haarlem Improvisation Competition

Bernard Bartelink


Bernard Bartelink (1929-2014) studied organ with Albert de Klerk at the Dutch Institute for Catholic Church Music in Utrecht. He continued his studies at the Amsterdam Conservatory with Anthon van der Horst, earning a Prix d’Excellence in 1954. Winner of the Haarlem Improvisation Competition in 1961, he also served on the jury for the competition four times between 1969 and 1996. He held the position of organist at St. Bavo from 1971 until 1999. He was professor of organ and improvisation at the Amsterdam Conservatory until 1989.

Entry in the 11th Haarlem Improvisation Competition
Entry in the 12th Haarlem Improvisation Competition

Klaas Bolt

KlaasBoltKlaas Bolt (1927-1990) taught improvisation at the Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam, where Masaaki Suzuki was among his students.


Klaas Bolt: Improvisations
– Haarlem Bavokerk, Haarlem Nieuwekerk, Zandvoort, Krewerd, Groningen Martinikerk
– Disque Lindenberg; CD 38,

Live Concert Maartenskerk Zalt
Includes an improvisation on Psalm 79

Entry in the 7th Haarlem Improvisation Competition
Entry in the 8th Haarlem Improvisation Competition
Klaas Bolt – Haarlem, 1958
Klaas Bolt – Variatie over een Sint-Nicolaaslied – Grote of Sint-Bavokerk Haarlem

Klaas Bolt – Psalm 108 – Harderwijk

Piet van Egmond


Website of the Piet van Egmond Foundation. It includes biographical information as well as some mp3 files and information on other recordings that Piet van Egmond made.

Piet van Egmond (1912 – 1982) was a Dutch organist and conductor. According to tradition, Van Egmond gave his first organ recital in 1927 at the Oude Kerk in Amsterdam with a program of works by Bach. In the same year he was admitted to the Amsterdam Conservatory, where he organ studied with Cornelis de Wolf. In 1933 Van Egmond was appointed organist at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw. After World War II, he was organist successively at the Jeruzalemkerk (1952-1956), the Bachzaal Church and then the Thomaskerk in Amsterdam (1956-1967), the Gereformeerde Wilhelminakerk in Haarlem, and finally the Grote Kerk in Apeldoorn (1971-1977). He became well known for his organ improvisations on hymns and spiritual songs at the end of his organ concerts and during services.

Recordings at NCRV:

Piet van Egmond – Improvisation of a “Rough Storm” – Wilhelminakerk, Haarlem
Piet van Egmond – Improvisation on Ps 138 – Grote kerk, Dordrecht

Jos van der Kooy


Jos van der Kooy is organist in residence at St Bavo’s Church in Haarlem (Müller organ), the Haarlem Philharmonie (Cavaillé-Coll organ), Westerkerk in Amsterdam (two organs), and the Gothic Hall at the Netherlands Council of State in The Hague. He studied organ and improvisation with Piet Kee at the Conservatory of Amsterdam where he was awarded the Prix d’Excellence in 1981. He was awarded first prize of the Haarlem International Improvisation Competition in 1980 and 1981 and the first prize of the National Improvisation Competition in Bolsward in 1978. He now teaches organ, improvisation and church music at the Academy of Arts of the University of Leiden, the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, and the International Summer Academy for organists in Haarlem.

He has performances that are included in the NCRV archive here, including an improvisation on Gezang 21. You can her him on Spotify.

Jos van der Kooy – Improvisation on ‘Komt vrienden in den ronde’ – Joriskerk
Jos van der Kooy – Improvisation – St Maartenskerk