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Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford


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#21 Vox Humana

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Posted 20 January 2007 - 11:31 PM

Witness the Briggs effort from Buckfast Abbey back in the summer - I know from personal experience what a pitiful and dilapidated condition this instrument is in

One wonders why. It's not that the Abbey is neglecting the organ. There seems to be a policy of piecemeal renovation. The Swell and Echo have already been restored. Currently the Great pipes are away being cleaned. There is every intention to do the Choir and Positive in due course (but don't ask me when). One might assume it all boils down to cashflow, but apparently not. I had a brief chat with Fr Sebastian this afternoon and when I mentioned the inevitable expense of keeping an organ like this together, he merely replied cryptically, "Oh, we don't need to worry about that".

#22 Heckelphone

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 01:08 AM

One wonders why. It's not that the Abbey is neglecting the organ. There seems to be a policy of piecemeal renovation. The Swell and Echo have already been restored. Currently the Great pipes are away being cleaned. There is every intention to do the Choir and Positive in due course (but don't ask me when). One might assume it all boils down to cashflow, but apparently not. I had a brief chat with Fr Sebastian this afternoon and when I mentioned the inevitable expense of keeping an organ like this together, he merely replied cryptically, "Oh, we don't need to worry about that".


Well, true - my family being from that village I have a little experience of the abbey's procurement of properties etc etc and believe I may have witnessed tonic wine being delivered in a tanker on more than one occasion. Last time I played it there were pipes dislodged on the Positive due to cyphers, the keyboards were terribly worn and the console in a generally poor state, and an awful lot of wind leaking. I hope they do keep it together.

#23 pcnd5584

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 01:30 AM

One wonders why. It's not that the Abbey is neglecting the organ. There seems to be a policy of piecemeal renovation. The Swell and Echo have already been restored. Currently the Great pipes are away being cleaned. There is every intention to do the Choir and Positive in due course (but don't ask me when). One might assume it all boils down to cashflow, but apparently not. I had a brief chat with Fr Sebastian this afternoon and when I mentioned the inevitable expense of keeping an organ like this together, he merely replied cryptically, "Oh, we don't need to worry about that".


Dom Sebastian Wolff - My God, is he still there?! A wonderful, gentle man, who kindly allowed me to play this most musical and exciting instrument on a number of occasions when I was a teenager.
I, too, hope very much that the organ will be restored to full working order before long. Could you inform me who is carrying-out the work, please, Vox?

Pierre Cochereau rocked, man


#24 AJJ

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 09:07 AM

Dom Sebastian Wolff - My God, is he still there?! A wonderful, gentle man, who kindly allowed me to play this most musical and exciting instrument on a number of occasions when I was a teenager.
I, too, hope very much that the organ will be restored to full working order before long. Could you inform me who is carrying-out the work, please, Vox?


And Trevor Jarvis (RSCM etc.) used to be around too - is he still?

AJJ
"…We can’t criticize the organ for being boring. In such cases it is the organist that is boring. There is no such thing as a boring organ."

#25 Vox Humana

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 11:13 AM

Last time I played it there were pipes dislodged on the Positive due to cyphers, the keyboards were terribly worn and the console in a generally poor state, and an awful lot of wind leaking. I hope they do keep it together.

No change there. I noticed that there are several pipes on the Sifflöte not sounding.

Could you inform me who is carrying-out the work, please, Vox?

Pretty sure it's Lance Foy.

And Trevor Jarvis (RSCM etc.) used to be around too - is hew still?

I believe so.

#26 ajt

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 01:04 PM

Tonally it failed to stir me much (Winchester was infinitely finer); my recollection is that it sounded somewhat heavy.


I've not played it a huge amount, but Winchester has never "done it" for me...

#27 pcnd5584

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 03:55 PM

I've not played it a huge amount, but Winchester has never "done it" for me...


Nor me. It just does not seem to have any real personality. Salisbury has lots of vivid tone-colours and exciting reeds, but Winchester seems to be lacking in that aspect which elevates a good organ to something quite special. I know that there are strings and orchestral reeds on the Solo, but they do not have either that shimmer or beauty of tone. It all sounds rather ordinary, really. Even the only example of a 32ft. reed by Hele & Co. fails to excite me.

The other anomaly with Winchester is, if one is going to have a Nave Organ, why not find somewhere in the Nave to site this division? At present, it has little impact in the nave because it is only one bay west of the main organ and yet it is still east of the choir screen.

Pierre Cochereau rocked, man


#28 Vox Humana

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 04:36 PM

You could be right about Winchester. It was a long time ago when I had little experience and the only time I heard it live in more recent years I was listening more to the choir than the organ.

#29 Guest_Lee Blick_*

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 04:39 PM

One wonders why. It's not that the Abbey is neglecting the organ. There seems to be a policy of piecemeal renovation. The Swell and Echo have already been restored. Currently the Great pipes are away being cleaned. There is every intention to do the Choir and Positive in due course (but don't ask me when). One might assume it all boils down to cashflow, but apparently not. I had a brief chat with Fr Sebastian this afternoon and when I mentioned the inevitable expense of keeping an organ like this together, he merely replied cryptically, "Oh, we don't need to worry about that".


Yeh with all that Buckie keeping Scotland lubricated there should be plenty of dough.

#30 Vox Humana

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 04:46 PM

Yeh with all that Buckie keeping Scotland lubricated there should be plenty of dough.

Fastbuck Abbey?

Surely not. :)

#31 ajt

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 10:07 PM


The other anomaly with Winchester is, if one is going to have a Nave Organ, why not find somewhere in the Nave to site this division? At present, it has little impact in the nave because it is only one bay west of the main organ and yet it is still east of the choir screen.


I keep offering mine as a nave organ :) I think it would do well!

#32 Vox Humana

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 10:01 PM

Could you inform me who is carrying-out the work, please, Vox?

Pretty sure it's Lance Foy.

Just to set the record straight, it's not Lance, but a local chap called Neil Hosken.

#33 pwhodges

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:17 AM

I wonder sometimes if somewhere there may still be a copy of the tape of hymn accompaniments that some friends and I recorded Paul Morgan (then organ scholar) playing for a missionary to use in his church in Africa.

This tape is alive and well, and is in the British Library Sound Archive, under call number C236/81. Also there are tapes we recorded the same day of Paul Morgan playing works by Murrill, Bach, Wesley, Alain, Howells, Cabezon, Reger and Clarke; these are call numbers C236/83-85. All these tapes are available for listening, by appointment. The tapes are good quality 7 1/2 ips stereo recordings made using a pair of ribbon microphones.

The Murrill, Bach and Wesley were also recorded around that time by Abbey for an EP which was, I believe, the only commercial recording of the organ on its own; I guess that my recording may have been a practice run on Paul's part.

Paul

#34 rogbi200

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 08:56 PM

Having had a post-Christmas trip to Oxford today, I concluded with Choral Evensong sung by the Cathedral Singers at Christ Church. However a digital organ is in situ. The most I could glean from the steward was that it's been in place since mid-December as the Rieger is 'broken'. Anyone know any more?

#35 innate

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Posted 31 December 2016 - 10:36 AM

Hi, rogbi,

 

I was hoping someone would reply with more info about the Christ Church, Oxford Rieger. Perhaps they will later. I must admit to feeling slightly worried by your news. One would have thought that the combination of Rieger craftsmanship and Christ Church guardianship would ensure a long trouble-free existence for the instrument. Is the old Willis 2-manual tracker no longer in the building? [I’m sure npor will tell me]






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