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Mander Organs


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About sbarber49

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  1. I also played the Harwood for FRCO but I've never, ever played it since!
  2. Like VH I learnt to accompany before the era of televisions and speakers. It does teach you the importance of listening very carefully as well as the importance of a good musical rapport with the conductor. I played in a distant, very high, organ loft where the only sight of the conductor was over the left shoulder - a narrow gap between two banners. It's different now, and the expectation is that the organist will follow the conductor's beat in a way which was then impossible. That can be a mixed blessing, mind you. Especially when the conductor feels it necessary to conduct all the organ only sections - I remember having to turn the monitor off for the first page of Blest Pair of Sirens so I couldn't see the flailing around. I also find it difficult if there is no television as the glasses I have to use to see the music don't allow me to see a conductor clearly at any distance. Nowadays, with access to Youtube, streaming, downloads etc., if I'm playing something that don't know I often play along with a recording when I'm practising it so I hear exactly what the choir parts sound like. I find it very helpful if the rhythms are tricky the choir and organ parts don't coincide closely.
  3. It was an interesting arrangement - quite a lot of Guillou in it, but still Vivaldi. The whole recital was terrific.
  4. Does anyone else play the Rathgeber Christmas Pastorales? I find them very useful for playing before carol services. Jolly and lively. http://shop.trinitycollege.com/shop/prod/Rathgeber-Johann-Valentin-10-Christmas-Pastorales-Organ/684858
  5. I'm also surprised. I thought that I'd read reasonably recently that Oxbridge colleges were despairing at the low standard of candidates for organ scholarships.
  6. I see there's an obituary in The Telegraph: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/obituaries/2018/08/28/henry-willis-organ-builder-obituary/
  7. I made one to suit my fingers (so fewer difficulties!). If anyone wants a copy, PM me. I've never come across Harvey Grace's arrangement. Where could I find it?
  8. Indeed, in my benefice (King's Cliffe, Northants) there are Holdich organs in Easton-on-the-Hill (a fine one, renovated by Richard Bowers), Bulwick, and a small one-manual in Laxton (complete with Diaocton), also renovated by Bowers. Collyweston has a one-manual that is also reputed to be by Holdich.
  9. Though still in copyright, of course.
  10. Try Leighton's Fanfare. It's a very effective, easy piece and I don't think it's often played (probably because it was published in the OUP book, "Easy Modern Organ Music". I think it's also in the Leighton Organ Music Book (OUP). There's a good one by Bliss: "A Wedding Fanfare".
  11. You've only got to spend a short time looking at the work of "composers" on the internet (e.g. CPDL) to see what garbage a lack of technique can produce.
  12. There is a good repertoire list here, quite entertaining as well! http://www.cumbrianorganists.org.uk/ (Go to "features", then "choosing your repertoire") I think the Ann Marsden Thomas book "The church's year" is useful. A book I use a lot is "80 chorale preludes" edited by Hermann Keller - most are for manuals, or can be played without pedals: https://www.musicroom.com/product-detail/product450705/variant450705/80-chorale-preludes-by-german-masters-of-the-17th-and-18th-centuries/ The "24 Pi├Ęces en style libre" by Louis Vierne are very good. (and on IMSLP). As for hymn playing, excellent advice above. I would get used to having a regular gap between verses - I nearly always go for 2 beats - just seems natural to me. Personally I don't worry about the metre - after all, no-one is troubled by a pause in music: it doesn't mean the rhythm is compromised. You need to listen to the congregation: you may need to give a little leeway at the ends of lines, otherwise it can sound rushed. Congregations do sometimes need to be bullied, but if they are behind it may mean the speed is too fast or that they don't have time to breathe between lines. Personally I do sometimes put a little rit. at the end of the play over if it seems unnatural otherwise - not with the more muscular hymns and, in any case, no more than holding back slightly the last chord or two.. Provided the speed is well established at the outset the singers will be perfectly able to sing at your speed when they start. That is a minority view, though, I admit!
  13. Pity it's on a Sunday morning when organists tend to be otherwise engaged.
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