3rd International Kurt Boßler Organ Competition

The "International Kurt Boßler Organ Competition" was established by the "Friends and Promoters of Kurt Boßler's Music" in 2011 on the occasion of the composer's 100th birthday.

The 3rd International Kurt-Boßler Organ Competition will be organized in cooperation with Freiburg University of Music from 2-6 November 2021 in Freiburg im Breisgau.

With Freiburg Institute for Church Music the University of Music has focused on the field of organ and church music. The goal of it is to research and promote talents in this field, especially in context of theology and music.


Competition Organ Solo

Audio file pre-selection (deadline: 12 July 2021)

1) One of the following works:
Johann Sebastian Bach BWV 541, 542, 543, 546, 547

2) One of the following works:
Max Reger Toccata+Fuge d-Moll | D-Dur Op. 59 | Toccata+Fuge a-Moll Op. 80
or two of the following works:
Louis Vierne from Pièces de fantaisie: Toccata, Impromptu, Naïades, Feux follets, Prélude

3) One of the followings works of Kurt Boßler
Chaconne Op. 50 (Merseburger) | Aphorismen (Kistner & Siegel) | Fantasie über »Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme« (Edition Kurt Boßler) | Kaleidoskop (Edition Kurt Boßler) | Eschatologische Kontemplation Op. 128 (Edition Kurt Boßler)

The works which are published by Edition Kurt Boßler and Kistner & Siegel are available for download on this page. The Chaconne op. 50 is available at music stores.


3 and 4 November 2021| Ludwigskirche Freiburg

4) One of the following works:
Dieterich Buxtehude BuxWV 140, 141, 146, 149, 155, 156
Nikolaus Bruhns Präludium G-Dur, e-Moll (groß)

5) One of the trio sonatas:
Johann Sebastian Bach BWV 525-530

6) One of the following works:
Franz Liszt Präludium and Fuge about BACH (late version)
One of »Trois Chorals pour Grand Orgue« by César Franck
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Sonate I or IV or VI

7) A work by Kurt Boßler (see list).
The work of audio file pre-selection can be repeated.


5. November 2021 | Wolfgang-Hoffmann-Saal | Hochschule für Musik Freiburg

1) Three movements of choice from one of the following hymns:
Nicolas de Grigny Pange lingua, Ave maris stella, Veni creator spiritus

2) One of the following Concerti after Antonio Vivaldi:
Johann Sebastian Bach d-Moll BWV 596 or a-Moll BWV 593

3) Works or parts of works of free choice (length max. 12 min.) by Max Reger, Sigfrid Karg-Elert, Louis Vierne, Charles-Marie Widor or Maurice Duruflé

4) A work by Kurt Boßler which is not identical with the work of the previous rounds (see list).

5) One work composed after 1970 of max. 10 minutes length

Special scoring chamber music (optional)

Audio file pre-selection (deadline: 12 July 2021)

Organ plus flute or organ plus recorder or organ plus trumpet

Recording of at least 3 works of different stylistic periods (or movements from them), including one work after 1950 (duration circa 20 to 25 minutes)

The compulsory work of Kurt Boßler of the main round (see below) can be included in the program.

Organ plus vocals

One of the followings works of Kurt Boßler:
»Das ist ein köstlich Ding« (Psalm 92,2-5) for soprano (Tenor) and organ (Carus-Verlag) or
»Der 150. Psalm« für soprano (Tenor) and organ (Carus-Verlag) or
»Magnificat« for soprano (Tenor) and organ (Edition Kurt Boßler)

Additionally recordings of at least 2 other works of other style periods (or movements from them). The total duration of all recorded works has to be maximal 20 to 25 minutes.

Special score chamber music

2 November 2021 | Friedenskirche Freiburg

A representative program of different stylistic periods of maximal 30 minutes.

Among them must be the following work by Kurt Boßler:
a) Organ plus flute: Mixturen (Edition Kurt Boßler) or Kontroverse (Edition Kurt Boßler)
b) Organ plus recorder: Kontroverse (Edition Kurt Boßler)
c) Organ plus Trumpet: Sonatine und Fantasie (Bärenreiter)
d) Psalm 100 »Jauchzet dem Herrn, alle Welt« for flute, Soprano (Tenor) and organ (Edition Kurt Boßler) in a editing version for voice and organ to be arranged by the participants

The sheet music of the works published by Edition Kurt Boßler is available for download on this page. The other works can be obtained from the corresponding publishers in music stores.


1st prize: 5,000 euros

2nd prize: 2,500 euros

3rd prize: 1,500 euros

Special prize for chamber music: 2,000 euros

Special prize of Gesellschaft der Orgelfreunde e. V. : 1,000 euros

Special prize for the best interpretation of a work by Kurt Boßler: 1,000 euros

as well as other concerts and performance opportunities


Chair: David Franke (Freiburg)

Bine Bryndorf (London)

Henry Fairs (Berlin)

Daniel Maurer (Strasbourg)

Martin Fahlenbock (Bern)

Application Procedure

The competition is open only to applicants who were born after 1 November 1986.

Organists are allowed to participate in both competitions (Organ solo and chamber music – only one combination).

It is also possible to participate only in the chamber music competition.

To apply, please submit the following documents by 12 July 2021:

  • CV
  • Copy of passport / ID card
  • Audio file with the program of the preselection, indicating the organ disposition of the instrument used.
  • Detailed program for semi-final and final round
  • Receipt for payment of the 50 euro application fee (Bank details: Baden Württembergische Bank, IBAN DE02 6005 0101 7495 5301 02, BIC SOLADEST600, reference »1381660000716«)

Please send your application to orgelwettbewerbmh-freiburg.de.

About Kurt Boßler and his works

»Aphorismen«, »Eschatologische Kontemplation«, »Kaleidoskop«, »Kontroverse«, »Mixturen« - organ works with such titles arouse curiosity and in the case of composer Kurt Boßler, rightly so. Behind them belong a musical language of an exciting mixture of objectivity and emotion, austerity and poetry. »Aphorismen«: delight in pointed musical splinters of thought; »Eschatologische Kontemplation«: profound sonic vision of apocalypticism; »Kaleidoskop«: delightfully turbulent play of forms and timbres; »Kontroverse«: dispute of the exciting and tense situation of contemporary composing; »Mixturen« : creative combination of tonality and atonality - translated in this way, Boßler's work titles offer a foretaste of what listeners and performers can expect.


Who was Kurt Boßler? Kurt Boßler was born in Duisburg on 10 July 1911 and he came to music relatively late. His musical studies at the Musikhochschule in Düsseldorf had a huge impact for his compositional development and also for his extraordinary autodidactic abilities, that released in him a high degree of self-responsibility.

Those who, like the author, were able to experience Kurt Boßler as a teacher, found in him a personality of bright mind and never tiring imagination. With all seriousness and incorruptibility of judgment in view of musical quality, he could be also a person full of friendliness and humor at the same time. Last but not least, Boßler's characteristic tendency to a certain mischievousness remains in memory, no less the pleasantly undoctrinaire, the freedom of his gaze - qualities that are reflected in the lively breath of his music in its playful, often dance-like, imaginative character.

(Berthold Wicke)

Kurt Boßler worked in his adopted city of Freiburg from 1943 to 1963. He worked first as a teacher of composition and Musik Theory at the Städtische Musikschule (later Freiburg University of Music), and then as a freelance composer and organist at the Paulusskirche and Friedenskirche.

During his extremely creative time in Freiburg, he wrote many compositions, took an active part in the musical life of the city and was in constant exchange with important interpreters of his time, who perform his compositions - beyond Freiburg's borders.

In 1963 he accepted a job at the Kirchenmusikalisches Institut in Heidelberg, where he taught composition and Music Theory until his death in 1976.

In addition to numerous compositions for organ, his oeuvre includes works for piano, chamber music for strings and winds, choral and orchestral works, and songs.

For more information, visit his website.