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Everything posted by sprondel

  1. Dear members, thank you all for your most interesting contributions to this thread, which turned out really informative – I loved the letter from Brindley & Foster especially. I was aware of the spectacular organ of St Mary Redcliffe which would clearly be on my list if one day I made the big dreamed-of organ-realted round trip to England. I am a bit embarrassed really, since my question was aimed rather at criticism than at information. In the recordings to which I have listened, the Leeds organ made a less-than-charming impression. Rather pale foundations, a weak pedal (mainly borrowed from everywhere), the merest hint of a chorus, dominated by harsh-sounding reeds, and a (new) Cornettino on one of the Greats that stands out like a sore thumb. I imagine it would be difficult to record an instrument like this satisfyingly, so my impression might be due to a venue that is less-than-ideal for recordings. But still I wonder what literature would come off really well there – or if this type of instrument only works in liturgy. I am glad, though, that the mean intention was ignored, and that the thread yielded so much interesting information. Thanks, Friedrich
  2. I have been listening to some recordings lately, and I wonder. Is the 1904/2010 N&B at Leeds Cathedral the crowning glory of Edwardian organbuilding? Or is it, perhaps, rather something quite different? Perhaps somebody who has heard the instrument in situ may provide some insight. Thanks in advance Friedrich
  3. Dream situation. My scheme would be to find the best builder who has the best of voicers on his staff, answer all his questions about the music programme, and then see whatever scheme he comes up with. Best Friedrich
  4. Always handsome, but Handel borrowed both birds from Kerll’s Capriccio sopra il cucu. Best Friedrich
  5. Dear forum members, recently I found the time to convert some vinyls to digital sound files. There is one I want to share as I find it rather intriguing. It conveys the sound of the German organ reform movement (Orgelbewegung), as it reinvented itself after the Second World War. This very organ was planned by organist and builder during their common time in a POW camp – or so it was related to me by a member of the congregation. (Please find the original stoplist in the notes accompanying the original YT file.) The builder, Paul Ott, apprenticed with Steinmeyer and built his business on the construction of tracker-action, slider chest chamber organs – being one of less than a handful of builders who dared doing so. Larger commissions came after the war, when many churches lay in ruins, and the stream of refugees from the eastern parts of the finished Reich flooded western Germany, forcing an upsurge in church building. Paul Ott was actively pushed by some church officials with their roots in the organ and liturgy reform movement. In Lower Saxony, he built his largest instruments (in Hannover and Göttingen); in the Rhineland, he often was the builder of choice for the protestant churches, where their catholic neighbours, if they could, afforded a Klais. Paul Ott’s models seem to have been instruments by Stellwagen rather than by Schnitger; one example he knew intimately being the smaller organ at St. Jakoby, Lübeck, another one the Totentanz organ in St. Mary’s, Lübeck, which fell victim to the raid of Palm Sunday, 1942. As you might hear from the recording, made roughly between 1964 and 1970, Ott had an idiosyncratic style of voicing. One of his apprentices, Rudolf Janke, called it »ingenious superficiality«. Later, Janke was often busy saving Ott organs from destruction by righting their deficits in the mechanical department and evening out their voicing. In this style, foundation tone is transparent and very articulate, mixtures are large and sharp, chorus reeds are dominated the principal chorus (note the pedal, which has fifteen ranks of chorus). Flutes could be quite lovely; in fact, they may have been Paul Ott’s definitive achievement. His chiffy diapasons, on the other hand, constituted an extreme organists learned to despise quite soon. This organ was renovated and revoiced in 1984 by Schuke of Berlin, and overall altered to a more common-sense style of sound. Nevertheless, it was this anti-romantic style, as documented in this recording, that was called for in the fifties and sixties by many protestant church musicians and churches. The playing as well is a prime example of Orgelbewegung style: North-German repertoire was, if anything, higher-rated than Bach by many; an analytic approach to interpretation was paramount, with the romantic notion of an overall crescendo development still prevailing. I do have a recording of Franck’s A minor choral on the very same organ, which might give most of you quite a shock , but which I intend to upload on YT sometime soon. It might be interesting to know that Paul Ott’s large organ in the Kreuzkirche, Bonn, is said to have been one of the definitive influences on no less a player than Nicolas Kynaston, who came by it by way of his student, the eminent Johannes Geffert. Kynaston later was consultant for a restoration project there, which was carried out by the British firm of Walker, part of which was changing all Ott reeds (which were stored) for their own. After that, Kynaston recorded here, of all pieces, Widor’s Eighth Symphony – and it’s a most exciting listening experience. Once in the Rhineland, Kynaston possibly then discovered his even more intense interest in the work of Klais. Have fun listening. Best, Friedrich
  6. ACCH, 64', 5-manuals? I'd suggest Three organ geeks meet at the watering hole. Best, Friedrich
  7. It is a common topic with the Art of Fugue, probably because the two major sources make the matter so plainly visible. Bach’s wish to stress the polyphonic, stile-antico nature of the music is often deduced from his supposed intention to publish the AoF as his third, and last, annual contribution for the Mizler society, which specifically dealt with academic matters. Bach was singularly allowed to contribute music instead of a treatise. Best wishes Friedrich
  8. In some pieces from the Art of Fugue, between the manuscript and the print version, Bach changed the signature as well as the note values; in some others, only one of either. Scholars put this down to his (supposed) wish to stress the stile antico connotation of his writing. This is supported by the fact that, in the later version, Bach preferred switching note values to the next-higher level. Since the texture generally remained the same, this does not seem to have affected the tempo. In short, a cut-time signature in Bach might just be a signal to the knowledgable player that it’s serious polyphony he’s dealing with, no less. Best Friedrich
  9. The large Goll organ at Engelberg Abbey, Switzerland, has two soft reed harmonics on the Swell: Dulcianquint 5 1/3’ and Euphonterz 3 1/5’. They are made to not stand out in any way, but gently colour the reed ensemble. When the organ was enlarged in 1923/24, it was voiced by former Schulze-apprentice Walter Drechsler, a legendary voicer in his day. The Swell, high up under the vaults, apparently aimed at imitating the effect of Cavaillé-Coll’s at Saint-Sulpice. The Engelberg organ, however, sounds much smoother and louder. Best wishes Friedrich
  10. If you look at the Arnstadt situation, you see a high and narrow building that was built to accommodate as large a congregation as possible, with two galleries all round the walls. You barely see any masonry, but wooden structures all over the place, including the vaulted ceiling. The organ sits very high up above the second gallery, and there is barely space enough for the open 8’. Depth space is quite restricted as well. If you ask me, this organ is a power machine, planned and built to flood the building with as much and as spectacular a sound as possible under these less-than-ideal conditions. There is a long-standing Thuringian tradition of providing 12' (= 10 2/3') pedal quints; the one at Lahm is particularly famous for its grand effect. Most probably, Wender did not plan to pre-Vogler anything here and have the quint with the unisons. My guess is that he included that manual quint to go with the chorus, which is very intense and complex. Any 16-foot growl must have been welcome with a congregation of several hundred, including all those pious and musical Thuringian men, singing at the top of their voices. Best wishes Friedrich
  11. And there’s more. Vol. 9 of the Priory GEO series has Widor’s “Romane” as well as some Parry and Wills’s own “Symphonia Eliensis” which starts most impressively with the 32’ Open alone. It also does not display those very odd interplay effects of couplers and reeds that can be heard on the GCO recordings. Best Friedrich
  12. Dear members, last autumn, Sotheby’s announced the sale of the handwritten travel log of Johann Andreas Silbermann (1712–1783), nephew to Gottfried (of Freiberg) and son to Andreas (of Strasbourg). Johann Andreas was a prolific builder in the Alsace and in the German south-west. Leaving Strasbourg, he undertook one major journey, via Frankfurt and Saxony to Berlin and back again. He met with important composers and musicians, such as Hasse, Pisendel, Homilius, Scheibe, as well as attending musical events at Frederick the Great’s residence in Potsdam. Being a keen observer as well as a shrewd writer – as we know from other reports from his hand –, he wrote down his travel report on some 300 pages. The report is said to contain many descriptions of architecture, organs, music, politics and every-day life in the areas visited by Silbermann. Being as well-educated and curious as a man of his day could be, J. A. Silbermann held strong views on organ building as well as on contemporary life and art. Apparently, the log has never been transcribed or edited before. In wealth of information as well as in wit, this source may rank right next to travel journals like Dr. Burney’s, for example (which was translated to German during the author’s lifetime and has therefore been well known to German readers). It turns out that the manuscript was acquired by the Saxon State and Universitiy Library (SLUB), Dresden. It will arrive there in late January and will be presented to the public on 17 February. I plan to attend the presentation and, if you don’t mind, report here in a more detailed way after that. Best wishes Friedrich
  13. I’m not sure if it is about voicing – at least not in cathedrals or other spaces of that dimensions. I suspect it’s more about balances. The Trier organ should have enough flesh and bones to balance a Tuba, and in the little service excerpts I heard it sounded fine. On several occasions I have heard the Mander Tubas at Freiburg, and they made a splendid impression with the Rieger and Marcussen pipework from the sixties (having been reworked and refined by the brilliant Beat Grenacher of Goll, Lucerne). In both cases, I expect you would find the voicing on the German side – at least in what I think you might mean: lively and articulate rather than smooth. In the acoustics of a concert venue, I think your question is all the more relevant, as there is no reverberation to even out differences in style. For the Eule in Duisburg, the voicers went to study organs of H, N & B and Harrison & Harrison, and I think they succeeded in bringing this type of voicing to their own organ. Best wishes Friedrich
  14. Dear members, let me bring to your attention a large new organ in Germany. It was built by the firm of Eule in Bautzen. The inauguration was held on the first sunday in advent. The Basilica is one of the largest buidings in Europe that still goes back to Roman times, as well as one of the largest protestant churches in Germany. Rebuilt after WW II, it was re-designed as a vast, somewhat sober space for contemplation and service that nevertheless conveyed an intense atmosphere by the combination of bare brick walls, open rafters und clear lighting. One of the window clearings serves as a chamber for the first post-war organ, a small but beautifully effective instrument by Schuke of Berlin. Clearly, there was much left to be desired, especially considering the grand, clear acoustics of the building. In 2006, plans for building an instrument for a more international and romantic repertoire took shape. Now, the new organ will be played alongside the Schuke, and hopefully ears continue to remain open for the musical qualities of both. The Eule firm, apart from being one of the leading organbuilding firms in Germany today, may have qualified for this organ with the Mercator-Orgel, the first organ in Germany that successfully brought the virtues of the English concert-hall instrument into a new German concert venue. However, as it is with concert-hall instruments, their impact very much depends on the management of the venue. This is not the case with a large church organ that will be heard in service. A fairly detailed stoplist of the new instrument can be found here. There are three enclosed divisions, a Positive somewhat German-romantic in character, a Récit mostly on French lines, and a Solo following English models. Here you will find the December music programme in PDF, containing some pictures of the casework (which has caused lively discussion) and glimpse of the attached and detached consoles. The sound, as could be heard in the opening service over the WWW (alas, no longer online), seems to be very convincing, colourful and grand, if not overwhelmingly loud. This impression was confirmed by a report (in German) of a concert given by Bernhard Haas, Daniel Roth and Thomas Trotter this last sunday. I think this newly-built organ is remarkable not only as an instrument that seems to justify a visit, but also as possibly one of the last major, newly-built organs for a protestant church in Europe, at least for the next few decades. Furthermore, in this concern as well as musically, it follows a road that was paced by, among other instruments, the large organ in Magdeburg cathedral, built by Schuke of Werder. Having had more than a word in the design of the organ, Barry Jordan is organist there, keeping up an ambitious music programme under often challenging circumstances. (Oh those Tubas. They keep coming.) Best wishes Friedrich
  15. I am not sure if we had this one here already – search says we hadn’t. I think this is heroic. Apart from being excited from hearing Reger performed so beautifully, and not just considering the circumstances. Best wishes Friedrich
  16. Dear members, I just came home from this morning’s recital at the Berlin Philharmonie. Thomas Trotter performed alongside Marie-Pierre Langlamet, distinguished solo harpist with the Berlin Philharmonic. The programme was Bach: Prelude and fugue in A minor BWV 543 Soler: Concerto No. 6 for two organs in D from “Seis conciertos” (1774) Marcel Grandjany (1891–1975): Aria in Classic Style op. 19 for harp and organ Handel: Concerto in B op. 4 no. 6 HWV 294 Reubke: The 94th Psalm The Philharmonie organ is a large instrument by Karl Schuke of Berlin. It was extensively rebuilt in 2012 and now has a well-known artist-in-residence*. Trotter played a most elegant Bach, employing (as far as I could hear it correctly) the full Great chorus in the prelude, with the pedal part based on the 32’ open most of the time. Nevertheless his articulation remained very clear all the time in all parts, often conjuring the sonic image of an Italian concerto grosso. The Great mixtures give an energetic sound, not tingling but full and intense (they are on par with the Great reeds which sound a bit neutral). Trotter started the fugue on Great 8-4-2 principals, changed to the Positiv flute chorus 8-4-3-2 for the longer manualiter section and returned left-hand-first to the Great, now with mixtures added, when the pedal comes back in. For the ending, reeds and 32’ were added – very satisfiying, and with a dance-like pace throughout. The Soler concerto is a piece in early classical style in two movements, a bipartite concerto and a minuet, both composed as pleasant dialogues between equals. Getting used to the combination took some seconds, but then everything worked wonderfully, with Marie-Pierre Langlamet playing very clearly and with the utmost attention to dynamics and articulation. Now and then, Trotter used of the Vox humana and Oboe to the best effect. Maybe this music would work even finer with a good, not-too-small chamber organ – having heard it today, I can only recommend it to everyone who is looking for more unusual combinations. I know harpists who would be grateful if they had more to do than playing arpeggios in the orchestra (which mainly is what they do). The Grandjany Aria is an arrangement by the composer. As played by both artists, with a most poetic harp part and Trotter working the boxes, it conveyed truly Elgarian moods – think “Ombra mai fù” and “Sospiri” mixed together. The audience loved it. For the Handel concerto, that famously is written alternatively for organ or harp and orchestra, Marie-Pierre Langlamet took the lead as soloist, with Trotter accompanying with the utmost exactness. Completely ravished, he watched Langlamet performing the grand solo cadence, composed by Grandjany. Again, the combination worked like a charm, and both artists seemed to enjoy themselves very much. The Reubke sonata, as played by Trotter, was an overwhelmingly dramatic experience from beginning to end. With wonderfully dense as well as lively legato playing, he never let go of the tension. The Grave developed into a terrible march, the Allegro con fuoco became a true battlefield. The Adagio avoided all static playing and kept a fluent, singing pace; both the fugues started out a bit sober, only to gain in power and drama. In the end, rulers were shattered and realms truly lay in ruins. The audience of perhaps some 500 or 600 people was enthusiastic, me included. As an encore, Trotter played Moritz Moszkowsky’s Serenade – most probably as an homage to Berlin’s genius loci. The organ is neo-classical at its very heart; even with much 16-foot tone, it never sounds very heavy, and to me the swell boxes did not seem to be terribly effective. Trotter played the organ to its many strengths: clarity of the ensembles, warmth of the foundations, some elegant colour reeds, and a dramatic tutti. Best wishes Friedrich *… who is not especially fond of it – an attitude that was vindicated during his last recital there, which was sabotaged by a stubborn cypher that could not be dealt with immediately. CC finished his recital on the Philharmonie’s Steinway, playing the Bach-Busoni Chaconne, some more Bach and Chopin. I wasn’t there, but was assured it was just fine.
  17. Oomph. That’s good. May-an. Amazed Friedrich
  18. Sorry, I went on and on without answering your actual questions. I believe I do hear the music very much as you do, in so far it concerns complex musical structures. Of course I do hear chords and not complexes of harmonics, and lines instead of rapidly changing fundamentals of irrational pitch. However, in compound stops and registrations that include strong harmonics, I usually hear the fundamental they relate to, even if it is only weakly present as a rank, or not present at all. Long-held chords may become awkward if they include loud thirds or higher-pitched odd harmonics. I do hear, and much enjoy, longer chords locking-in with harmonic complexes, though, where unequal temperament uses near-pure thirds that fall in line with the harmonics of a reed in the bass and third-sounding ranks in the other voices. Best wishes Friedrich
  19. If sounded as two notes at a time, I will probably hear them as such. The Sesquialtera phenomenon – play one note on a North-German Sesquialtera, consisting of a slightly sharp twelfth and a flat seventeenth, and you will hear those notes apart, as I do. Start playing lines and runs throughout the compass, and the separate notes will vanish, giving way to a glassy and nasal fundamental. According to Levitin, that is a product of our brain processing and ordering environmental sounds. Jehan Alain knew all that instinctively and made use of it in his compositions, e. g. towards the end of the Second Fantasy, where at least my brain struggles to shake off the illusion of hearing a harmonic that belongs to another fundamental, and to perceive the diminuendo line at the actual pitch. As a violinist, I used to make use of difference tones when practicing double-stoppings. You can train yourself to perceive them quite quickly. If a major third “drones”, it will work in solo playing, but rarely in ensemble. When I practiced scales in thirds, I tried to get rid of the drone, sharpening the major thirds and narrowing the minor ones in order to arrive at something approaching equal temperament; when I practiced fourths, I sought the drone, because without it the fourth would sound foul. (I gave up that kind of practice, useful as it proved, because of lack of time, and after all, I did not make it my profession.) I find the subject as fascinating as you do, and think it is one of special importance to the organ; in fact, it singles out the organ as the one instrument that extensively makes use of the effects of difference tones as perceived by the human brain, in order to give the music a special colour. In my ears, a Grand Plein Jeu with sub-harmonics in the order of 5 1/3’ and even 10 2/3’ sounds fascinating, even when no actual fundamental rank is present. At Lausanne cathedral, Fisk included blind features with the Great mixtures: The sub-unison ranks only come on if the respective fundamental rank is drawn (16’ or 32’ open). That’s smart, but I think it’s slightly beside the point in certain styles. I even am tempted to say that the fundamental is grossly overestimated in organ sound. Best wishes Friedrich
  20. As far as I can see, you are correct except for the very last bit. From what I read in Daniel Levitin’s excellent book “This Is Your Brian on Music”, there is the fact that musical frequencies are represented in the brain as firing frequencies at the same rate. Fascinating as that may be in itself, it gets even more so when he writes that resultant tones, though they are not present as frequencies measurable to electronic equipment, are measurably present in the brain at exactly the frequency that results from the difference of the frequencies that are present and measurable. So difference tones apparently are real to brains, if not to computers. They are a human phenomenon. In organs, they work more or less well depending on voicing and scaling as well as acoustics. Eberhard Friedrich Walcker’s “monkey fifth” Violones are famous, in the bottom octave of which a stringy open 8’ pipe carries a “rucksack” stopped pipe sounding the fifth above its fundamental. Walcker and his voicers managed to make the transition from open pipes to “monkeyed” ones all but inaudible. This, as well as the numerous occurences of sub-unison harmonics in historic organbuilding, e. g. in Schnitger, Clicquot etc., all without the related 16’ or 32’, tells its own story as concerns difference tones and their use in certain styles of organ tone, doesn’t it? Best wishes Friedrich
  21. About the white-gold colouring, it might have turned out in this vein, which I think is far from unattractive. What you can also see here is the huge part of the case below impost level that creates that elegant balance to the large towers and flats. It’s this elegance that the Notre-Dame case today is lacking. Despite its baroque carvings, it always looms low in the shadows. Organs of the French classical era never loomed. On this page (which most of you probably know) you may have a look at the subsequent stoplists of the organ, along with the drafts by Cavaillé-Coll and by Cochereau that included the Positif-de-dos, and with some of Viollet-Le-Duc’s drawings, if in low-definition. CC’s draft was far from the monumental organ that he built in the end. Cochereau’s plans, on the other hand, included an 18-stop Positif that would have been a full complement to the Grand-orgue and Solo divisions from his days. Today, the Plein-jeu classique is a bit isolated in the Solo, it lacks its counterpart – which would have been that Positif with a petit – or rather « petit » – Plein-jeu. As you can see from the stoplist, it would have been an animal quite different from its namesake within the main case. I can but marvel at the way the titulaires come up with ever new ideas to expand the limited resources of this instrument. Best wishes Friedrich
  22. Another more recent recording is Ben van Oosten’s, played in Salisbury. It’s on MDG. As Colin, I started listening through the recordings of the piece that I happen to have – regrettably, Carlo Curley’s is not among them. I love Roger Fisher’s recording for its sheer zest; it sounds as if he was utterly enjoying himself doing the recording. And he saved the most startling effect for the end, pulling the Tuba just for the grand arpeggio. John Scott’s St Paul’s recording is wonderful too in its controlled romanticism – one of its many special moments being the sombre swell reeds for the opening gesture of the third movement, one other being the off-leash impression he makes in the very end. Thomas Trotter in Salibury, as well as in Ludlow, is sheer elegance. Last but not least, Ben van Oosten, playing as mentioned in Salisbury, in a way has it all, and in his special way manages to sound excitingly beautiful while doing everything the most correct way imaginable. He can be so disarming. A special place in my heart is reserved for a friend’s recording. Michael Gassmann, who by the way is an eminent Elgar scholar, recorded the piece here, with me pulling stops and turning pages. Before you laugh – the organ, it not ideally suited, can make quite a racket, with those French pedal reeds (as our host has witnessed); and Michael’s playing proved to me that in this piece the organ is not even half the music. Best wishes Friedrich
  23. I am not. If I recall correctly, the current loft, rather elegant as it looks, is still Viollet-Leduc’s construction, and it was never meant to bear a Positif-de-dos, even if the beast turns up in some of the drawings form the « restauration ». From what I have been told, even moving around up there can become awkward because the wooden construction tends to swing and sway with the steps. Furthermore, Viollet-Leduc had the base of the main case reduced in height – again if I recall correctly, because his loft was situated higher up, and he did not want the case to obstruct the view of the rose window. That’s why, in proportion, today the case looks as if it ducks slightly. If one wanted to reinstate the Positif-de-dos in matching proportions, i. e. in full eight-foot height, one would have to a. dismantle the organ in its entirety, for the first time in its history, b. build a new loft on a lower level, stronger and more bulky, c. to reconstruct the base of the main case, and re-erect the historic parts, with all of Cavaillé-Coll’s extant Barker machinery, bellows etc. one storey up, d. to come up with a convincing concept, musically and technically, for a division that never was a part of what Cavaillé-Coll actually built. Of course, you could say that of the current Solo and Résonance divisions too (apart from the latter expanding Cavaillé-Coll’s idea of working with partials which played a major role in this organ). But they, God only knows how, found a home within the existing structure. And all this is completely ignoring any concerns regarding the whole thing, building and organ, being classified « monument historique ». Yes, I can imagine why no-one wanted to turn the cathedral’s main entrance into a three-year, or rather five-year, construction site. Best wishes, Friedrich
  24. Well, I imagine there are two things that might stand in the way of liking the piece. First, it appears not to be written very organ and organist friendly, and it takes more of an effort than with most other music first to learn the notes and then to make the music come across on a particular instrument. And then, it’s Elgar. His music is always intense, it never wastes energy trying to justify itself or negotiate with the listener’s tastes or predilections. It is never shy of showing off its qualities, peculiarities, extravagances and idiosyncrasies. No other British composer of that era ever managed to sound as personal and as characteristic as Elgar did. In my ears, it’s what makes him great, but it clearly renders him also open to criticism and dislike. I, too, am annoyed with his music sometimes, but not with the sonata. Listening to Elgar is like dealing with a real person (and not a very polite one at that), you just cannot escape him and his ways. If that may not present reason to hate someone, then what does? There are even people living now who still loathe the man – the man, rather than the music – to the marrow. With me, it’s “Ad nos”, by the way. Most of the times sitting through it, I found listening to it an utter waste of time. Best wishes Friedrich
  25. It is a nice disk (or two, actually – the music comes on an additional CD as well, convenient for players in cars etc). Watching Thomas Trotter perform is a real pleasure. Everything seems to come off with such ease and such simple elegance, you just want to sit down on the bench and try it yourself. Shaun Ward, the local DoM, gives a brief introduction to the organ and its history. Thomas Trotter gives short and insightful introductions to the pieces, of which I loved most his evocative idea concerning the middle part of the second Elgar movement – he pictures Elgar riding his bicycle across the fair country landscape. I don’t think I will ever get rid of the picture when listening to that bit of the sonata, and I do not mind. The organ sounds fine, and definitely English down to the last stopped diapason. The Elgar is the ideal piece to show off its many strengths and beautiful colours, even if you might consider the organ rather a moderately-sized instrument. Apparently, it has everything it needs, and it serves the player well, who most of us might associate with the huge Birmingham organs over which he presides. Speaking of which – Thomas Trotter has recorded another DVD-CD set in Birmingham Town Hall in 2011, “The Town Hall Tradition”, also with Regent. There, the Meistersinger prelude sits comfortably next to Leroy Anderson’s Typewriter, along with many other pieces equally exciting. Watching it all executed so elegantly is equally delightful as it is on the Ludlow disk. Speaking for myself, I admire his playing the Meistersinger prelude – but his own 1986 performance on that wonderful Hyperion disk still goes unsurpassed, even by himself. Best wishes Friedrich
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