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John Furse

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  1. David must have been the automatic choice to be the recitalist for the Inaugural Recital of Colchester’s restored Moot Hall organ, in May 2015. To a packed (invited) audience, he brilliantly displayed all the marvellous qualities of this important and historic instrument, which was built for that lovely Town Hall. Local lad made (very) good, he grew up and was educated in the Town (at the Royal Grammar School), before moving away to attend Bristol University. He was one of Colchester’s most distinguished sons yet, to use that cliché, he never forgot his roots. He was a fount of knowledge of all things ‘organ’, particularly those of his native East Anglia; each instrument, however small, contained some item of interest to him. We benefitted greatly from his erudition, always proffered modestly, on this forum.
  2. On this Monday of Holy Week, our prayers are required: for the building, its fittings and windows . . . and organ(s).
  3. There was me thinking, ‘I’ll have to put these dates in my Anna Magdalena notebook’ - then I saw them and realised I would be the other end of the country !
  4. That would be wonderful, thank you, Robert.
  5. If this happened in 1956, I would find that even more remarkable, Paul. If what you say is true (and I have no reason to doubt you) then, two years after the Royal Festival Hall organ (1954), with all its new-fangled German barockery, out of the blue (?) and in the Fens appears an Italianate confrère. I’m trying to put all this into context. Is there any ‘evidence’ that Drs Wills and Jackson communicated about this, with ‘influence’ going one way or the other ? Have you been able to unearth anything more, Robert (Sharpe), please ?
  6. The Schulze went to Northampton, Rowland: http://www.npor.org.uk/NPORView.html?RI=R01934. Here is another. This is a lovely-sounding instrument and a delight to play, in an attractive and historic church: http://www.npor.org.uk/NPORView.html?RI=N05945 When I referenced the mighty (1851) tome, I seem to recall it was a special edition of the Illustrated London News. I used to read this in the British Museum - which then held the British Library.
  7. Don't be sorry, Aeron: you are correct to correct my mistake. I even looked at the book on a South American river, but am distracted with a current composition. Thank you.
  8. I’m sure you know Nicholas Temperley’s “The Making of the Victorian Organ” (Cambridge U.P., 1999), Ian. The organs displayed at the 1851 Great Exhibition have long been of interest to me. I live near one of the smaller ones and relished my 'exploration' of St Anne, Limehouse in the 1970s (then, no fee required).
  9. Again, many thanks, Robert. From NPOR: Dr Wills’ Fiffaro was in the 1975 H&H rebuild - well into the British neo-classical revival (see trending other thread). From what you have written, this Voce Umana ‘effect’, with a detuned stop, was only possible from the 60s/70s. Might Dr Jackson’s ‘innovation’ have prompted Dr Wills to imitate this sound ? Is there any possibility of your finding out about this ?
  10. Robert: am I to understand, therefore, that the Voce Umana (now renamed) was, in fact, intended as an imitation of the Italian Renaissance/Baroque ‘effect’ ? If so, would that not be unique in our organs of the time ? I don’t suppose this single drawstop will be able to be half-drawn (?). Sorry to labour on: what is the hierarchy (in decibels, as it were) of the loud reeds west of the Screen, please ? And, would the Swell reeds still then be #5, even with the West Shutters open ? Many thanks.
  11. Ah! That is even more satisfying - and a 'cunning plan' long before Baldrick. Thank you, again, Robert, for the detailed elucidation and its historical context. Now, can anyone think of a piece which avails itself of such a splendid concatenation of brassiness ?
  12. I, too, have been fascinated by the depth of imagination and thought processes outlined above. Was ‘Enclosed Solo on Choir’ considered in addition ? I could envision a scenario (although cannot, at the moment, think of a specific piece. Perhaps one could be written.) where a configuration of heavy pressure reeds on the four separate manuals (Solo Tuba Mirabilis, Swell loud reeds, Great loud reeds, Choir/Solo enclosed Tubas) might prove useful. Alternatively, perhaps, ‘Tuba Mirabilis on Choir’. With this iconic stop restored to its original, coruscating splendour, the historic ‘York sound’ will once more resound. I seem to recall hearing an LP with this glorious ‘noise’ being completely transcendent. Would not sub/octave couplers on this stop breach H&S regulations ? I welcome your thoughts, Robert.
  13. Do public servants not have a duty (in this case, the local authority) to ensure no losses are incurred by their (council) taxpayers ? Can they be said to have made ‘reasonable’ efforts in this regard ?
  14. One of the greatest performances (to my ears) of the Belgian Franck’s A minor Chorale is by a Dutch organist, on a French organ in Spain, recorded in 1990 by an English label (with the booklet printed in Germany): Piet Kee (on Chandos) on the 1863 Cavaillé-Coll of the Basilica of Santa María del Coro, San Sebastian. There must be more than a whiff of incense - in fact, at times you can almost see it here wafting up from the pipes - and utter belief in one's redemption.
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