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Mander Organs


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About nfortin

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  • Birthday 28/08/1958

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    Cheltenham, UK
  1. Chavenage House, just outside Tetbury in Gloucestershire, has been used as a location for a number of films and television episodes. It has a 7-stop chamber organ in a gallery above the great hall. I don't recall ever seeing it played, but it certainly appeared visually in "The Mysertious Affair at Styles", one of the earlier of the David Suchet "Poirot" series. Details of the organ are on NPOR, photos of the organ in situ in the great hall gallery can be found on the Chavenage House Interior Photos page.
  2. Others have previously commented on the difference between Wyvern's custom build and stock models. My own experience is with custom built. All aspects of the instrument, including console layout, comfort, keyboard touch, and of source, sound, are of absolute top quality. Since this instrument was installed we have seen the church become a venue of choice for the best independent chamber choirs in this area.
  3. Well I know its not what our hosts want us to be discussing, but I don't think our 3M Wyvern-Pheonix could be bettered. Only Copeman-Hart came close - at literally double the price.
  4. I was watching episode 4 (or was it 5?) of The Jewel in The Crown on dvd the other evening, which is the one with the wedding of Teddy and Susan. No organ I'm afraid but when the couple & chief guests retire to the vesty to sign the register there's a rather splendid rendition of what sounds like a Handel march being played on a harmonium. The standard of playing is far beyond what would be likely in the context of the episode. Anyone know what the piece is and who was the player?
  5. Mm, seems a bit like choosing between the electric chair or the gas chamber to me. Don't much fancy either!
  6. Irrelevant really, but it made me think, with a smile, of that wonderful Laurel & Hardy movie where they're moving a piano...
  7. This would suggest to me that you have not experienced good, state-of-the art instruments. The reeds on our Wyvern-Pheonix are absolutely superb, as are the flutes & diapasons. I don't believe anyone would consider the full organ to be "Foggy". Our loudspeakers sit clearly visible and undisguised on large shelves in the north transept. If we happened to have an attractive pipe front from a former instrument I would see no harm in using it, but we don't. Since the organ was installed (in 2006) there have been a number of occasions upon which visitors, including other organists, have com
  8. I took my daughter to an open day at Bristol University a week or so ago (and yes that makes me feel very old!) during which time we attended a talk in the main hall of the stunning Wills building. I was interested to see the 4 manual organ console clearly visible at the back of the stage, with pipework visible through the screens around the back of the stage. NPOR seems to suggest a mixed and confusing history for this instrument. Has anyone played or heard it - whats it like?
  9. Yes, the pedal board is much less deeply recessed under the manuals than normal, this is what makes it so uncomfortable until you get used to it. Somebody told me that this was indeed to make room for trackers - but I've no idea if this is true. The console has retained the old gothic-arch woodwork, and also still uses very large stop knobs. We've discussed the HNB square pistons before, I'm not sure it matters what shape they are so long as they are comfortable to use and do the job. (I just can't abide double-touch pistons - invention of a lunatic as far as I'm concerned.) Gloucester sti
  10. On one of the RSCM Cathedral Singers visits which I accompanied a couple of years ago, my daughter, who sings with the group, visited me in the loft when I was practising during the lunch break. "Listen to this" I said, coupling full great and full swell and playing a chord or two. "Daddy, stop it", or words to that effect, she said whilst putting her hands over her ears. It is, pardon my language, bloody loud. This is part of the problem. You just can't find quiet swell combinations for the psalms or whatever. Use of the mixture on the swell (during choral accompaniment) is more or less o
  11. I too always enjoyed playing the instrument in its former state, however I would also agree that reconstructed organ is a very fine and exciting instrument. The old organ was, in my opinion, much better suited to choral accompaniment and english music generally, whereas the new organ not surprisingly is better as a germanic recital instrument.
  12. I've commented under previous topics that, unlike Paul Derrett, I quite like the Cheltenham Town Hall organ. I would probably agree with Paul that its not an ideal recital instrument and certainly is not the instrument upon which to play the works of J S Bach, nevertheless it does superbly well at supporting large carol concerts and the like and is probably the best organ I know for providing the organ parts in the orchestration of the great Elgar choral works. Full swell is remarkably rich for so few stops. Its also an intrument on which you can bring the house down with pieces (for the non-
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