A highlight of this recording is Kunz's transcription of Camille Saint-Saëns' Le Carnaval des animaux, which he first performed in 2014 for the inauguration of the Pierre-Béique organ. Kunz's transcription demonstrates the organ's ability to render a wide range of orchestral colours and textures.
The organ at Maison symphonique de Montréal was designed and built for the OSM by the renowned organ builder Casavant in collaboration with architects Diamond Schmitt + Ædifica. The large scale Opus 3,900 organ boasts 109 registers, 83 stops, 116 ranks and 6,489 pipes, and holds its own in orchestral works.
Jean-Willy Kunz is the first organist in residence of the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal. In addition to playing both with the orchestra and in recital, he sees to the development and showcasing of the OSM's Grand Orgue Pierre-Béique at Maison symphonique de Montréal.
Kunz studied with Louis Robilliard and Mireille Lagacé, as well as at McGill University, where he earned a doctorate with John Grew. The recipient of numerous prizes at competitions including the Canadian International Organ Competition, Kunz won third prize and the Richard-Bradshaw Audience Prize in 2011. In September 2015, he was appointed organ professor at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal.
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