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Posts posted by JWAnderson

  1. On 23/04/2020 at 06:42, Andrew Butler said:

    As a former member of the cathedral congregation, and having played this organ, this seems a sensible scheme - particularly the Clarion Mixture.  Clifford Harker used to play RH up an octave with a big congregation.  However, I am surprised at the same nomenclature for two Clarinets...?  I am also struggling with the logic of an Acoustic Bourdon at 32' AND a separate Quint stop from the Bourdon.....?

    I can think of at least one Cathedral organ with both a Choir and a Solo 'Corno di Bassetto', both of different character however.

    It seems like a useful idea to have the Bourdon available at 32ft pitch as a softer alternative to the 32ft Open Wood, especially further up the compass where an Open Wood would tend to be too big to use underneath Swell strings, for example.  The Walker at Sacred Heart Wimbledon has this feature and it is very useful.

  2. Greetings all,

    I am starting to learn the Fantaisie in E flat by Saint-Saens, however the score indicates in the first section that the organ in theory should have three-manuals. Now whilst the organ that I practice on does have three manuals, unfortunately one of them (the Choir) is prepared for only...


    So my question is thus: Has anyone had any experience playing this piece on just two manuals and if so, was it effective?


    Many thanks,


  3. There are computer based transmission systems where the only cable between the console and organ proper is a simple CAT-5 or 6 Ethernet cable so in theory there would be no reason why the ethernet cable could be replaced with a wireless link using two wireless routers.

  4. Resurrecting an old thread, but has anyone ever come across any organs where there is a 'Swell to Pedal Combination Coupler' but not the more usual 'Great & Pedal Combinations Coupled'? I played in the NZ Organists' association playing competition in June this year and the three-manual organ which was used had this... And the Great & Pedal pistons were not permanently coupled.

  5. As originally built, in 1912, the J. W. Walker organ in the Church of the Sacred Heart, Wimbledon, had an Octave Oboe in the Swell Organ; however, this rank was replaced by a Vox Humana at the time of the 2010-11 restoration by Mander Organs. Interestingly, this instrument also possessed a Septième (but at 1 1/7ft. pitch), between 1935 and 1985. (As far as I know, it was then that the 1935 additions to the Choir Organ were removed.) As an aside, I regard the removal of these ranks - which included an unenclosed Open Diapason 8ft. and a Gemshorn 4ft. - as a matter for regret. Previously, if one wished to have the original sound of the instrument, one could simply choose not to use the additional stops. Now, the player has no option. I think that I would miss the Open Diapason and Gemshorn more than the mutations. The Choir Organ as it now stands is merely a collection of quiet voices - beautiful, no doubt, but without the tonal 'structure' which a Diapason and the additional 4ft. stop would have provided. A further thought is that, since the 1935 mutations were almost certainly scaled and voiced rather differently to that which is customary today, and since a Septième on an English organ at any pitch is as rare as hens' teeth, it would have been an interesting historical record to have kept the stops. As it is, the aesthetic appeal of the console is somewhat debased by the wooden caps over the old stop-holes, which spoil the lines of the stops on the jambs. It would be interesting to know if the church retained and stored the pipe-work, in case a later generation desired to reverse the changes.


    I read that these ranks which were added to the Choir in 1935 were removed as they were simply "piggy-backed" off the soundboard to separate chests and were unreliable because of this. More information here: http://www.mander-organs.com/portfolio/sacred-heart-wimbledon.html

  6. I played the Crucifixion on the 13th, luckily not on the neo-baroque sqwarker that I thought might be used at first. Instead it was a 1960s Vermuellen (or Verschuren, I'm not sure which) with upside down draw stop layout, Gt & Sw all on the treble end, four blind thumb pistons plus cancels which don't move the draw stops and a Swell pedal which you only had to move your foot in its general direction and it would move... At least it did have some reeds.


    Performance was very good however and there were some very good comments afterwards.

  7. I too will be very interested in hearing any responses regarding this as I will be accompanying a performance of it too, however on a not-so-well stocked organ (1970s squawker with no reeds and a less than useful Larigot...)



  8. Firstly something which can be best described as 'sequencer abuse': http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUXXXrZsHdk


    I am reminded of a moment at a masterclass given in Wellington by Olivier Latry, when a young organist was rushing through the sequencer at quite a fast pace to a particular point in his piece, to which Olivier replied "You will never play at Notre-Dame!!"


    Never mind what it's doing to the electrics, but more importantly what is it going to do to soundboards (if they are sliders)...

  9. SIOC rebuilt the 1965 Walker at Winthrop Hall, University of Western Australia (http://www.ohta.org.au/organs/organs/Winthrop.html) in 2008 and I think all of the winding system was kept with the 'schwimmers', one on each soundboard and I think a couple of single-rise reservoirs for the Pedal division.

    The schwimmers were recovered and had the internal springs replaced and as far as I am aware there have been no problems with it.


    I can possibly provide some pictures (inside and out) of these units if you wish.

  10. Well, OK - although I am not sure what my name appears to be....







    Well, I went to Tesco the other day, since I fancied a burger. However, initially, I was unable to find them. Then a helpful young lady told me that it I walked past the dairy produce, turned left at The Booth, I would see them - directly after Becher's Brook.


    I dutifully did so - only to discover that Tesco had a special offer on; they were selling ready-cooked burgers at half price. So I went up and ordered a couple and, when the chap who was cooking asked me what I wanted on them, I decided to splash out and said 'Ten pounds each way, please.'


    Such nice, helpful people there. However, the mane thing is that they appear to be reaching the tail-end of this crisis now. I cannot tell you how relieved I am. This sort of thing can last for weeks -with people trotting out one lame excuse after another....


    Well I certainly think this one has cleared the hurdle...

  11. Seeing as mention has been made of the "Automatic Pedal", here is one for you in a different context.


    St Patrick's Basilica in Fremantle (http://www.ohta.org..../WA/StPats.html) has two organs, a large four-manual in the West gallery and a small 19 stop two-manual in the South Transept. Both organs are playable from either console, but the Transept organ has Great & Swell divisions combined when played from the West console and the West organ has an independent set of general pistons (no stops apart from three solo reeds) on the Transept console.


    The Transept console has a coupler labelled "Automatic Pedal Coupling", which means that when the two organs are being used in dialogue with say the Transept on the Swell manual and the West organ on the Great, the organ will automatically switch between the Transept and West Pedal departments depending on which manual you are playing on at the time.


    This was, as far as we know, the first use of this type of coupler and has since been incorporated into the organs of St Mary's Catholic Cathedral, Perth (http://www.ohta.org....TMARYSCATH.html). Both organs include the "Great to Swell" coupler for the purpose of playing the two organs together also.

  12. As to the ‘enormity’ of the Ophicleide at Truro: surely the answer would be to have it ‘tamed’, so that a 32’ could be provided that is in balance with it. “Firmly I believe and truly” such a magnificent acoustic cries out for such a stop.


    Or to do as H&H have done in some recent organs, borrow the G.O. 16ft reed to the Pedal and extend the 32ft reed from that. This way you could also have a softer alternative to the Ophicleide. Does anyone have any first-hand experience of this?

  13. Yes, this is correct - had you seen the RSCM literature, or do you have a photograph of the old console?


    As your prize for the first correct answer, I would offer you an evening on the organ of Wimborne Minster. Unfortunately, I am unable to include the air fare to make this a practical proposition.... However, if ever you happen to find yourself in this area, you are welcome to claim your prize.


    No, I'd not seen any of the RSCM literature, nor a photograph, but I recall it being mentioned here before.


    As for the prize, I shall have to put a rain-check on that. I'll make a point of coming to Wimborne when I get around to travelling to England!

  14. There is a spelling mistake on the engraving of one of the drawstops. (It also appeared on some promotional literature from the RSCM a few years ago). I would be interested to know if anyone can tell me which stop it is and the precise details of the mistake. Perhaps I should offer a prize.


    The 'Contra Posanne' or something like that?

  15. Well, after a somewhat unorganised Midnight Mass at the Catholic Basilica (which included three verses of 'O come all ye faithful' being cut out and me not being told until halfway through the last verse, which then meant that all the work I had put in during Monday learning the Willcocks arrangements for the last and penultimate verses was wasted...) I gave them Vierne's 'Carillon de Westminster' during which I greatly enjoyed drowning out all of the talking using full organ in the last couple of pages.

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