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Andrew Lucas

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About Andrew Lucas

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  1. I had the impression that he hadn't played the organ at all, seriously at least, for decades ... probably since his time at St John's in the war. We played through some of Bach's fugues on the piano in some of my lessons - his favourite was the B minor (organ - BWV 544) - I was 'allowed' to play the pedal part! You couldn't really tell from his piano playing about things like his touch when playing Bach on the organ - I just remember it all being rather stately. But then he was 86! We were primarily concerned with musical structure and he even more so with beautiful lines - so there were l
  2. Hmmm. Then we are agreed - eclectic it is. There is a wonderful hymn by Frederick Faber 'There's a wideness in God's mercy' which has the verses : For the love of God is broader than the measure of man's mind, and the heart of the eternal is most wonderfully kind. But we make his love too narrow by false limits of our own; and we magnify his strictness with a zeal he will not own. This could apply to categorising organs into "styles". Aren't organs just good bad or indifferent as musical instruments? Shouldn't we concern ourselves with how well they do the job they were buil
  3. I started to type a more detailed reply to Pierre but managed to lose it! And now am in danger of losing the will to live. But I think you have hit the nail on the head ... making assumptions from the written word and a knowledge of history rather than from direct and intimate knowledge of the instruments. Mind you, it is understandable. After all most of us in England think that St Bavos Haarlem is an old baroque organ, (which it appears to be on paper) whereas in reality it is a modern and versatile Neo-classical (?) organ - its certainly not old because it has been revoiced at leas
  4. St Albans Organ is not a neo classical organ. It is nothing remotely like the organ you refer to in Antwerp. Eclectic I can just about agree with but neo-classical - never!
  5. This is how rumours start! Look on NPOR or even better buy the fantastic book by Niland and Plumley about the organ in St Paul's and then you will see that there has never been a 4' flute in the Swell. The only change to the Swell since 1872 came in 1977 when the Vox Humana was added.
  6. The other slightly less costly answer is to get the recitalists play on the chancel organ much more and use the present dome organ much less. Then you have the resources of a five (or arguably six) manual organ. All of the chancel organ can be heard very clearly in dome area, but only as long as the background noise from tourists is non-existent or kept to a minimum (and this is something which would apply in any large building, of course).
  7. The Church of England's old standard texts: The services from the Book of Common Prayer (1662) and the (King James) Authorised Version of the Bible (1611?).
  8. I'd forgotten about St John's where he said that he was complemented by someone on the piece of music he played as a voluntary, but that he had only improvised it. (I think his views on organs in general mirrored his attachment to the BCP and the AV)
  9. Not sure about two things there - 1) did he play the organ after about 1916 when he was 'retired' from Salisbury due to ill health and 2) I'm not sure that he really noticed the organ reform movement that much? (I don't think he liked the RFH organ very much, but that's hardly a surprise. He wrote the Partita for a first performance there but it's not his best music, nor does it look like it was written with that kind of organ in mind)
  10. Yes of course. Do it in September though - I'm on my hols at the moment.
  11. He's back next term, allegedly. You don't need an introduction ... we aren't snooty here!
  12. Acting in a Deanly kind of way ... (on sabbatical - alright for some, eh?)
  13. I think you mean the Acting Dean of Antigua!
  14. You're too kind! I know what you mean about Gloucester in both senses - the music (lines/textures) would sound clear but perhaps some of the timbres might be a bit ... er ... thinnner. I understand that he liked the dark textures from the organ sound - the challenge I enjoy is getting dark sounds and clarity when it's needed. (I was trying to avoid saying it, but it's another lesson I've learned from the organ here in St A's where we can do dark and thick, but clear, if that doesn't seem to be a total contradiction). I hope you don't mind me not answering the last question. Perhaps whe
  15. There are a few things that I would like to add about this topic, if I may. I was fortunate enough to be a student of HH in his very last years as a teacher at the RCM. Everything you say in the paragraph above was borne out by remarks he made to me; he particuarly loved the language of the BCP and the bible (AV of course), he loved cathedrals and places like King's and Gloucester especially and he relished the opportunity to write for them, but like many composers (Britten, Tippett...) he didn't really claim to have a belief in God in the Christian sense, just a sense of spirituality. In
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