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Mander Organs

AJJ

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Everything posted by AJJ

  1. Maybe ultimately one has to have faith in the needs and knowledge of the incumbent musicians - after all they use the instrument day in day out. For instance there was a great deal of fuss amongst the great and good when it was discovered that Klais had got the contract to do the work at Bath Abbey. Knowing the organ before (unreliable and really at odds with itself) and after, in my opinion one can only marvel at the versatility of the instrument as it now stands and the fortitude of Peter King and the others involved to achieve this end. (The same could probably be said for Paul Hale at Southwell, Graham Elliott at Chelmsford and isn't Sheffield planning something quite spectacularly different too?) Most certainly, however there seem on the whole to be fewer schemes that show peculiarities of taste on behalf of consultants or incumbent organists these days in 'ecclesiatical' organs than in some of the concert instruments being built - maybe there is more accountability to parish or cathedral body etc. - or perhaps less money around. Having said this, however - are Worcester's plans actually public or is all this line of discussion supposition? - it would be interesting to know more! AJJ
  2. Another thing that seems to be that organs worked on by Osmond have name plates removed relating to builders who had previously worked on the instrument - leaving only theirs. So making it difficult to sort out a history etc. I have found this to be the case on several occasions. AJJ
  3. Or maybe something the other way round like at Lancing College with its newish 'out and out' Frobenius at the front and an almost Romantic ' old-but-completed' Walker at the back. I played New College a few years ago and it sounded very good but looked its age - rather like an elderly kitchen cabinet in places - there's a Walker of similar vintage and tonal leanings in Bristol going the same way! AJJ
  4. Re John Hosking on Truro - in many ways so Lincoln also on a larger scale - having sung 'under it' fairly regularly for a number of years (some time ago now) and had a number of organ lessons on it from the then Assistant Organist, Roger Bryan I can vouch for its versatility and surprising lack of problems to play on despite its rather far flung geographical layout . With a bit of thought and experimentation most things seemed to be possible. AJJ
  5. Try an NPOR search for Goetze and Gwynne and also William Drake's website for more examples on this subject - http://www.williamdrake.co.uk AJJ
  6. There is a 1769 Snetzler and other interesting instruments (some 'early' including a c1795 James Davis and an 1809 Gray) at the English Organ School at Milborne Port - The well known recitalist and teacher Margaret Phillips and her husband David Hunt organize a regular series of recitals and workshops there all of which are well worth attending. I heard the Snetzler there a number of years ago and it certainly has a 'lively' sound with chorus topped by tierce mixture etc. Details of the organs (including those mentioned and a couple of rather nice modern instruments by Peter Collins) at the EOS can be found on the NPOR. Within reasonable distance from the EOS at Blandford Forum can be found (in its original case) the 3 manual 1794 England/1876 Hilll (1971 Mander) instrument - also well worth a visit. Margaret Phillips has recently recorded music by Stanley on this and other organs of similar vintage - Regent recordings - REGCD190 - 2 CDs. These recordings have been very well reviewed as one would expect from this player see:- http://www.theorganmag.com/cdrevs/04/329rev4.html AJJ
  7. Were they not taken over by Hill,Norman & Beard at some point? - ex Osmond men are working as independent tuners etc. in this area (Somerset) and Deane Organbuilders of Taunton I THINK maybe was formed from former Osmond employees also. There is a large rebuild of theirs (Osmond that is) at St Peter Parkstone, Bournemouth - Bryceson/Compton etc. which I think had Roger Fisher as consultant - this must have been one of their last large jobs in 1982/3. Not much help - but perhaps try contacting Deane etc. - they will be able to tell you more. They are at Priorswood Industrial Estate, Taunton, Somerset TA2 8DB -Telephone: 01823 253036. AJJ
  8. It's very well done - with decent headphones one almost feels that one is there...BUT...isn't half the Elgar P & C March missed out in the McVicker arrangement? AJJ
  9. 'The Birmingham discussions remind me of a visit to the Ulster Hall Belfast some time ago with a usually fairly restrained crowd - one member of the group got distinctly carried away (for a considerable ammount of playing time) with the horizontal Fanfare Trumpet there - a visible (and aural) personality change came over him in fact. In time the whole experience became quite painful for the rest of us! - maybe a health warning on the console...? Seriously though - one was left thinking about the actual MUSICAL point of such a stop. AJJ
  10. Hi Tim 'Trouble is my 'one manual plus non standard pedals' doesn't do much justice to the Widor or L-W Sortie - a friend down here puts her vountaries up on a board at the back of the church AND has managed to get her congregation to stay quiet till the end. It's probably a matter of training!! AJJ
  11. The Ghent Cathedral organ sounds superb on the website mentioned above - I tried the link and even managed to obtain a copy of the Verschraegen Toccata played there through the good nature of the organist, Edward De Geest - I'd never heard it before. Interestingly the 1889 Anneesens in Bridlington Priory here in the UK (extensively rebuilt since) is about to be brought back into sensible working order by Nicholsons with Paul Hale as consultant - one wonders what sort of Anglo-Belgian combination of sounds might be found there. I have never heard the instrument but believe that the 32' Tuba is colossal! Try the NPOR for the stoplist. AJJ
  12. A good idea I think - and maybe also post the details of the piece being played (this would also mean the organist has to be organised enough to get these to the 'sheet person' in time for duplicating!). I will try it out next time I am on duty. A simple but effective solution - thanks! AJJ
  13. I do feel strongly that the voluntary should still be considered as part of the service - I try to fit the music to the season/theme etc. but this does not always work!! It just makes one feel rather out of it all when the voluntary just 'happens' with very little attention from anyone else present. After all, thought and work has usually gone into its performance (I try also to get hold of the other service music during the week before I play and if not rehearse in full at least play through to look out for any hidden 'nasties' that I might be required to be involved in.) As to 'educating' and/or 'entertaining' - 'not sure about that one but sometimes one feels a little taken for granted.......maybe 'thought provoking' could be the right term. L-W works though I do not play much of his music - the theme from Star Wars also stopped a few in their tracks after a recent family service but a long rehearsed piece of JSB slipped by unnoticed!! AJJ
  14. All Saints Margaret Street in London has also recently had work done on it by H & H and as well as sounding really rather good copes well with many areas of the repertoire that one would not expect to work. AJJ
  15. Where I play the (musical) incumbent asks for voluntaries and fill in 'mood music' but the only people who seem to notice what is played (and wait behind to hear the conclusion of whatever I provide after the service) are the other rota organists! The rest enjoy their coffee loudly at the other end of the building. Is this general? AJJ
  16. PCNDs references to Kilkhampton were interesting - Roger Yates had some ideas well ahead of his time - the organ is a gem. Incidentally the 32' dates from work done by T C Lewis in 1892, the Bombarde having been added by Yates in 1962 (see NPOR). (The Pedal mixture there has two ranks but apparently was originally to have contained a tierce as well.) Most of the energy behind Yates' work came from the then Rector, Rev. Ronald Watts - an organist himself who I was lucky to be able to interview at some length during the mid 1980s while preparing an article on Yates for Organists' Review. Last time I played the organ it was showing signs of its age but since then I believe work has been done to return it to good order. There is also an interesting Father Willis organ in Kilkhampton Methodist Church - 3 manuals with only 7 speaking stops yet a model of planning. It was apparently built for W H Monk (composer of hymn tunes) in 1867. (See again NPOR) AJJ
  17. Hence frequent Willcox (and others) carol arrangements with twinkly choir mutation type introductions - often in 6/8 time! (Sussex Carol in CFC1 etc.) AJJ
  18. I may be wrong but doesn't the original advisor for the work at the above church now have Southwell connections himself. If so maybe get him back to advise again!! AJ
  19. The mature work of Arthur Harrison too. AJ
  20. Have you heard some of the new work that Schoenstein are doing in the US - Jack Bethards their director is a dedicated disciple of both Willis and harrison. st Paul K Street Washington is a superb example. AJ
  21. I play on a one manual 1870s Vowles organ in a small village church - Unenclosed Open Diapason, enclosed Claribel Flute, Viola da Gamba, Dulciana, 4' Principal & Flute, Fifteenth and Oboe plus Pedal Bourdon 16 and coupler. To accompany a service is fine, to play serious organ music demands imagination. With some thought however, a large array of possibilities can be found for interesting combinations of sounds using octave transposition etc. and different positions of the trigger swell pedal. In this 'village organ' context the Dulciana (the softest stop with the Viola almost like a 2nd Diapason - enclosed and more 'stringy') is of great value - I had thought of getting it tuned as a celeste but to be quite honest it is better as it is. The Victorian builders seemed to know what they were doing in this context as far as service playing in concerned - as far as organ music goes it is up to me to use what is available to best advantage. Apart from perhaps adding a Mixture to cope with the more lusty congregational singing if I had the choice (and money available) I would probably leave the rest (including the Dulciana) as it is Cheers AJ
  22. Did they not go to Tewkesbury Abbey - the Grove Organ?
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