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About CT_Worcester

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  1. I don't know why builders include the tuba in the 'tutti'. I remember hearing a fine improvisation at Hereford Cathedral ruined when the final peroration was swamped by the tuba, which was either the last stage of the general crescendo, or on the 'tutti' piston. I think heavy users should be made to provide credit card details before being able to draw the tuba and solo to great; either that, or agree to undergo therapy!
  2. I should like to add my thanks to Adrian and Chris for a memorable and most enjoyable day. Thanks also to David Morrison for giving us access to the library, and the fascinating documentation relating to the organs of the Cathedral. I'm ashamed to admit that it, in all my years in Worcester, it was my first visit to the library! It was a great pleasure to meet some of my fellow board members and hear them play, and to hear the range of music that the Tickell organ is able to handle in a very musical and convincing way; a delight, also, to hear the choir in such fine voice! As readers
  3. Adrian, could you count me in also for the 31st? Many thanks. Henry Cairns-Terry
  4. Further to some earlier discussions on this thread about the Hope-Jones organ at Worcester Cathedral, here is an essay by Colin Pykett entitel Elgar's Organ Sonata and the Organs at Worcester Cathedral. I don't think this has been referred to before in these pages.
  5. I must be about ten pages behind with this fascinating thread... I remember the tuba profunda well from my days as a schoolboy attending Cathedral services, which I did both pre- and post the H&H rebuild. It and the 8ft extension were extraordinarily loud, probably too loud for general use. Harry Bramma would normally couple down the solo bombarde 16, eg in the Vierne Carillion, where it provided a very effective moto perpetuo. The tuba profunda was wonderful for congregational accompaniment - no rousing final verse was complete without a thunderous bass line! Incidentally, I
  6. I remember seeing a piece in an old edition of "The Organ" from fifty years or so ago on the C-C / Mutin scheme. The specification was listed, and read much as you might expect. There was also a photo of a scale model of the organ - a very fine-looking and ornate case with at least two 32' towers. It was not clear from the article where the organ was to go. From what I recall, the project did get some way, and funds were raised; they were ultimately diverted to pay for repairs to the fabric. So AC-C's dearest wish remained unrealised.
  7. I heard the Worcester Organ just before Christmas. It was in fine voice in the hands of Christopher Allsop playing the Naji Hakim "Adeste Fideles" in duet with the Nave electronic. Afterwards I spoke briefly to the Dean, who had clearly been approached by a number of people on this subject. He said quite firmly that there was nothing to be done, as the organ was almost unplayable. He said the Tickell instrument is likely to go in sometime in 2007; the Nicholson in the Nave will be a year or two after that. There are some photographic mock-ups around in the Cathedral showing what the
  8. ... 2. I always draw attention to students the fact that the Tuba is located on the SOLO manual (normally) - even at the Sacré-Coeur in Paris, where they are chamade 16/8/4 on top of the organ pointing slightly downward (in twilight the view of these extraordinary pipes remind one of a WW2 battleship). Some players feel the need to couple this Uk stop to the Gt to achieve cataclysmic musical (sic) moments. Many a time I have thought that on electric-actioned instruments in the UK a cut-out mechanism could easily be in-built to stop this 'accidental' usage happening. Solo surely means solo or
  9. I must admit I am a bit suspicious of performances by "star" players. Maybe I am being unfair, but it is almost as if the temptation to make a mark becomes too much. For example, I once heard Jean Gillou play the Mozart Fantasia in F minor at an unbelievable pace. Also Pierre Cochereau, in his recording of the Vierne Symphonies, takes the Chorale from the Second Symphony at a tremendous lick - faster than any other performer I have heard.
  10. I think the old Worcester Cathedral organ would form the basis of a very fine instrument, especially as it contains within it so much of what is interesting about English organ-building, Hill, Hope-Jones, Harrison & Harrison...
  11. The ten-second reverberation was the old organ. I also make it six seconds for the current organ.
  12. It grieves me, too, that so many of the major contracts for new organs in this country should go to foreign firms building largely neo-baroque instruments, especially since, as it seems to me, the fashion over the last two decades appears to have moved away from trying to make any and every organ that comes up for reconstruction conform to the baroque model, towards respecting the integrity of the various indigenous periods and styles. It does, however, seem to me that we have not discovered a distinctively British "school" since Arthur Harrison died, and even firms such as Manders look to
  13. I've been listening to the Bate set again in the car over the last few days and am full of admiration for the brilliance of the Beauvais instrument and the clarity of Miss Bate's playing. I am not enough of a scholar to know what liberties she takes, though I note she does include the brief hiatus at the beginning of the toccata in "Dieu parmi nous", which some players omit.
  14. Returning to Worcester Cathedral a moment, Harrison added two mixtures to the Great in 1925, one a Harmonics, and the other a five-rank quint mixture along the lines of the 1908 example at Ely. The 21st in the Harmonics was suppressed in 1967, but I think the rest of the Harmonics survived the 1972 re-build, as a cornet. The Swell acquired a mild-mannered three-rank mixture in 1967 and a Scharf in 1972, which complements the marvellously fiery 16-8-4 trumpets. These are on something like a 15 inch wind. The Choir gained a high-pitched mixture in 1972, but was not much changed. As regar
  15. The disposition of the new and old Gloucester instruments is quite interesting. The organ is placed centrally on a screen (in a fine Renaissance case from 1665), and has to accompany services both in the quire and in the nave. The current organ solves this problem by having West and East Great organs, with the reeds in between. The Swell has shutters west and east. The choir organ is in a chaire case dating from 1579 and facing east. The West Positive, as its name implies, faces west. When Willis rebuilt the organ in 1888, his first instinct was to split the organ on either side as he
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