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Mander Organs

John Robinson

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About John Robinson

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 03/08/52

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    A missionary from Yorkshire to the primitive people of Lancashire
  • Interests
    Organ design

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  1. Canterbury Cathedral & Manchester Cathedral, New organs

    That's an excellent idea, as I'm sure many people seem to believe that only the pipes they can see actually exist. Getting back to Manchester, that reminded me of the 32' wood and reed in that cathedral which are situated in a side aisle and to which I naturally gravitated. What I found rather surprising was that visitors can approach those pipes unhindered and can easily reach the tuning springs of the reed! It only takes an inquisitive visitor to wonder 'what are these strange pieces of wire?' and 'I wonder what happens when I push this one up and down?' And, no, I resisted the temptation!
  2. Canterbury Cathedral & Manchester Cathedral, New organs

    I went to see (and hear) the new Manchester Cathedral organ this morning, accompanied by the long-suffering wife. I was quite impressed. I have to say that I found the organ rather 'in your face' although, to be fair, we were sitting on the front row in order to have a good view of the pulsator organum. Certainly, it is not without power although, on the other hand, I didn't hear any really quiet sounds that I should imagine would be important during certain services and even recitals. I don't think we had the opportunity to hear the Solo organ either, at least not on its own. We did, however hear the Choir organ (on the other side of the organ - we were in the nave) which, surprisingly, came through very clearly. One slightly amusing comment, or at least I thought so, came from a lady sitting near to us at the front. Prior to the performance I mentioned to her that in our location I wondered whether the organ might be a little too loud (it was). Her response was, "I suppose it depends on where the loudspeakers are". I suppose, though, that ought to be expected these days with so many 'cheap alternative' toasters around, although it occurred to me to wonder what she thought the purpose was of the large organ case dominating the whole cathedral.
  3. Music desks

    I'm surprised that all music desks are not routinely made adjustable with regard to tilt. It would solve a lot of problems, apparently. Just my four penn'orth!
  4. Canterbury Cathedral & Manchester Cathedral, New organs

    My wife and I shall be listening to it 'in person' on 14th October at 11am.
  5. Happy Birthday, Francis

    At the risk of posting a couple of hours in advance, happy birthday Dr Jackson! I am so pleased to hear that you've made your century, and I'm sure that's something felt by many many other people who admire you and your achievements.
  6. BBC Radio 3 Choir & Organ

    An unexpected move in the right direction from the BBC!
  7. Youtube

    Indeed it is, but then Passau is 5 organs (main, north aisle, south aisle, choir and echo in the loft!) and it manages with (only) 5 manuals! My design for a hypothetical organ consists of two organs, each with 6 manual divisions and having only 4 manuals! Incidentally, I often find such translations a little amusing. In this case (Waldsassen) Holzregal 16' is translated into Wooden Shelf 16'!
  8. Youtube

    Yes, an excellent performance. However, straying slightly, I cannot imagine the need for six manuals on an organ, other than one-upmanship of course! The need to stretch up to that top manual must be inconvenient, not to say painful, unless the organist is blessed with the arms of a gorilla of course. In fact, I'd maintain that there is really no need for any more than four manuals as a maximum, bearing in mind that divisions in excess of that number can easily and quickly be assigned to one or more of the four, perhaps by buttons on the key cheeks. And how many hands to do most organists possess anyway?
  9. Unusual audience member

    And the occasional wrong note would probably not be noticed!
  10. Thanks for that. I have bookmarked it to read properly later, as it could take several days to read it all! Looks very interesting, though.
  11. Unusual audience member

    Cats are wonderful creatures, aren't they? Much better than dogs. I can't imagine a dog having the skill to play the organ, on any manual. Or could they?
  12. Unusual audience member

    At both Passau Cathedral and Cologne Cathedral the buildings were full to bursting when we visited. Indeed, in the latter venue people were bringing camping chairs to sit in the aisles, there being insufficient places in the pews (or perhaps the pews were considered too uncomfortable!) and, moreover, the programme was largely Messiaen! Such a shame that the organ appears not to have quite such an ardent following in this country.
  13. How ridiculous. Trendy vicars, not to say money-grabbing ones, will be the death of the Church.
  14. Servite Priory Fulham

    I was given to understand that these early 16' regals were not particularly loud - certainly no louder than the flues above them - yet in addition to providing a sub-octave pitch, they also contributed upper harmonics to the ensemble. I assume the modern ones were inserted for the same purpose.
  15. York Minster

    And yet the changes under the supervision of Francis Jackson have been claimed to make the organ 'more musical'. I suppose, though, that tastes change over time! I do look forward to hearing more about these proposed changes.
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