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Everything posted by mrbouffant

  1. Well PD is in liquidation, so no one new owns PD otherwise they would own whatever debts made liquidation the sensible option. Cawston purchased the assets/goodwill (whatever that means) of PD so how can it be split up? I would be interested in hearing more on this from anyone in the know...
  2. The Times has an obituary: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,60-1808300,00.html
  3. mrbouffant


    Who's to say, but I think it demonstrates pragmatic management. I would never criticise anyone for having the guts to pull the plug on a high profile and expensive project if for whatever reason it is clear that it's financially impossible. Often people bury their head in the sand and push on regardless, with predictable results.
  4. mrbouffant


    All members should have received a letter about this during this week. Seems like after a detailed review they can't afford to do the revedevelopment/move. A brave decision to throw the brakes on but it does leave them with a lot of big decisions to be made now I guess...
  5. mrbouffant

    Rare Music

    As I said, excuse me for being a killjoy. Are you not selling the scores for these works on your website? I must have misunderstood the shopping cart bit... Copyright law in the UK is different to the US, and hence the date of death of the composer is the overriding factor, not the date of authorship/publication.. Not sure what the moderator on the board thinks about a post on a UK forum which links to material which by UK law is still in copyright...
  6. mrbouffant

    Rare Music

    An interesting way of promoting your own goods and services! As well as breaking the forum rules, I guess you are also breaking copyright by providing these audio recordings since all these composers died within the last 70 years... Sorry to be such a killjoy...
  7. I have felt some of the innuendo a little misplaced, personally, but I do feel this rather serious and dry board has been livened up by certain individuals of late.. One solution might be that Manders would consider enabling the "complain about this post" link which this board software supports and then they would be in a position to react to other people's view of particular contributors. Then again, they would probably prefer to concentrate on what they are best at -- building and restoring fine pipe organs :angry:
  8. you've just reminded me, i have a CD of the Atlantic City organ.. the first tracks are indeed each of the blowers starting up... lol
  9. lol ... I have two but they both "clunk", assuming the East one hasn't tripped which often happens..
  10. Thanks for all contributions. Recalling that I am talking at this stage about minor niggles and trying to be proactive about it, and the fact that the last round of major fundraising/rebuild was only in 1990 (cost then c£125k) it's not very likely I'm going to get very far if I go the whole hog as suggested.. It may be that commissioning a report from an IOA will be the next step, at least on overall condition etc. Do I dare go back to the original Diocesan Adviser - who proposed the current scheme and no doubt recommended Daniels - and is now elsewhere but a very prominent IOA himself? hmm...
  11. An interesting point, but this is the same Proms Administrator who commissioned and put Birtwhistle's "Panic" in the Last Night a few years back much to the consternation of about 99.5% of the viewing public....
  12. I have to say I found the sound quality of the concert rather disappointing, but perhaps that's just a function of the reproduction via my Sky+ box. The balance, especialy of the choral forces (in particular, in The Rio Grande) was too distant to my ear. Why do the BBC insist on covering the organ in that horrible mottled lighting effect? Quite disgusting. The Rodrigo is an old warhorse which would have been better replaced IMHO by a British alternative to mark the occasion.. perhaps the Sir Malcolm Arnold or Lennox Berkeley concertos? Would have been nice to have included either/both of these splendid composers this year... Still, roll on next season. Will I ever get my dream of Ian Tracey performing Guilmant's 2nd Symphony on the restored organ?.. I fear not!
  13. Let me bring it back kinda to the original area of discussion. So here I am, I have a 15 year old organ which was rebuilt by PD.. Yes, it has the obligatory new mobile console.. Part of the organ which was rebuilt was purchased from another church, the other part is the original instrument for the church, manipulated wholesale by various builders over the years (including one of my predecessors!) I would therefore be reluctant to say there is anything within it of historic interest or that is typical of a particular period or school of English Organ Building. It is an instrument which is very suitable to it's primary purpose of accompanying congregational singing and the choir. I find it a flexible enough recital and examination instrument. The thing is, it is starting to play tricks and I had thought this might be typical of an instrument of this age. Reading many of the detailed and knowledgeable responses in this thread has me worried that is certainly not the case. The quirks at the moment are all very minor but I worry they are prelude to bigger problems to come. The question is therefore what do I do? Do I commission a thorough survey by Cawston Organs now they have purchased PD and see how the land lies? Or do I convince the PCC with appropriate arguments to employ someone else to do it? What is the "correct" approach here? Any thoughts appreciated..
  14. A little harsh? I would have thought 15 years without any problems is quite good for a piece of complicated machinery, even based on a 4 month tuning cycle or whatever. The church it's in is always having something done to it (roof repairs, new floor etc) and even with dust shielding this would have had some effect on the action and other mechanisms... How long should a new organ last without exhibiting any problems? Surely by their very nature they are at least at the mercy of the changing seasons in this country and the associated temperature fluctuations (heated church or not..)
  15. So is it the case then that the DOA doesn't get involved after the scope has been signed off? I find it hard to believe that any DOA worth their salt doesn't keep involved at some level all the way through, to the point of "signing off" the work at each stage and authorising release of payment?
  16. But what of the role of the DOA and the organ's owners/curators/players in all of this? Surely they have to be culpable too if the end result lacks cohesion? Builder-bashing is all well and good but what of those advising, those paying the bill and those that have to live/play with the result? I fancy they have to take some flak in this as well!
  17. Personally, I quite like the new front end.. overall, NPOR seems more responsive on the new platform as well..
  18. I don't know if the rules have changed, but back in October 1997 (thanks to my mate writing to Prof. Tracey) I was given a slot on the mighty Willis. I was met by the Organ Scholar (Keith Hearnshaw) on a Sunday afternoon about 4pm and promised "a half hour" on the recital console.. Obviously I must have played OK because I was allowed 90 minutes in all, with Mr. Hearnshaw kindly pulling stops and giving gentle advice and encouragement. We did have to throttle back a bit because of guided tours, but he even threw in the (then new) Trompette Millitaire as I concluded my last piece (Guilmant No. 1, finale) It was truly an experience of a lifetime! Even a visit to Blackpool that very evening and a ride on "The Big One" couldn't compare with the adrenaline rush of the Liverpool Organ. Awesome!
  19. As Director of Music at a Church with a Daniel rebuilt organ I have a letter from Cawston Organs introducing themselves as having taken over PD's assets and goodwill. According to the letter, all the Daniels staff have been retained and they seem to be operating out of the same office with the same 'phone number. Chris Manners (who has been very poorly and is "nearing retirement") stays on as a consultant. I look forward to hearing what Cawstons have to say about my particular instrument which is now heading for middle age (15 years) and is starting to become somewhat temperamental.. I hope also that they now keep their tuning in house. Often our instrument was ineffectively tuned by local subcontractors. I also look forward to a more responsive relationship with the builder.. so often I asked for information, prices etc. and received very little response in return..
  20. FYI, the East End organ is the original, although it's been moved and chopped about since it was new (c1895). The West End organ was purchased at the time of the rebuild. It was a redundant instrument that was remodelled to fit on top of a vestry at the West End. There is no gallery. There is no room to add extra pedal ranks. I suspect a large amount of compromising went on to fit the redundant instrument into the West End. There is just about enough room at the top to fit a horizontal trumpet, which is part of another plan :angry: The choir have two sets of stalls. The 'eucharist' stalls are midway along the south wall. The evensong ones are under the East Organ, by the High Altar. The acoustic is pretty dead.. the building itself is modest, largely C14. The roof is wood, there are wooden pews and a stone floor. Thanks for all comments.. Next stop (so to speak) will be the diocesan organ advisor, but who knows what his attitude will be? In a sense, the current situation - an amalgam of different instruments and a bespoke moveable console - means at least the die is already cast in terms of not having to follow a particular style or school when considering ways of improving the usefulness of the instrument. --mrb
  21. I have a largeish organ in the shires which was rebuilt in 1990 or so. It is split with swell/great/pedal at the East End and the same plus a choir division on the West End. It's played from a bespoke console (draw stops for the west organ, tabs for the east).. Whilst the instrument is eminently fit for purpose, it does lack in two respects. The first is the west pedal division is wholly underwhelming, especially when pitted against a full congregation. It has Trombone 16' extended into a Trumpet 8', an Open Diap 16' which extends to a 8' principal and a 4', and a Bourdon 16' which extends to a 8' flute and a 4'. The second respect is the East End lacking variation for accompanying the choir. The great overpowers, the swell is small and there is no choir division. I have funds available to remedy this. The Southwell Minster idea of digital pedal stops is an obvious means of solving the west end problem. Can anyone comment on the success or otherwise of this approach? How does the digital part of the instrument fare when pitted against the tuning changes that will come about from changing temperature and humidity? If the idea works for low-end stops, can it be applied to provide a whole new division (i.e. the east end choir in my example). Do you think it would be possible to blend a digital chorus across the whole range of the pipe organ? If anyone can contribute some ideas I would be most grateful ! With thanks ! --mrb
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