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Everything posted by sbarber49

  1. I thought that only the first section of the piece was based on a Processional for Fanny's wedding but that the rest of the piece was added later.
  2. Very sad to report the death of David Drinkell. Formerly organist of Belfast Cathedral, and later at Christ Church Cathedral, Frederikston. A frequent contributor here. From the cathedral's Facebook page: Christ Church Cathedral is today mourning the death of a dear friend and member of Cathedral staff, David Drinkell. David's talent, his wit and friendship are among what we are remembering today. We are also praying for Elspeth as she navigates this loss. "Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace ..."
  3. I also played the Harwood for FRCO but I've never, ever played it since!
  4. 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.
  5. It was an interesting arrangement - quite a lot of Guillou in it, but still Vivaldi. The whole recital was terrific.
  6. 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
  7. 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.
  8. I see there's an obituary in The Telegraph: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/obituaries/2018/08/28/henry-willis-organ-builder-obituary/
  9. 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?
  10. 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.
  11. Though still in copyright, of course.
  12. 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".
  13. 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.
  14. 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 Pièces 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!
  15. Pity it's on a Sunday morning when organists tend to be otherwise engaged.
  16. Gosh! You certainly have a very low opinion of West (& Co.)! Certainly knowledge of historical practice was not developed in West’s time but, he would he really “ have had no interest in it”? I read that he was a pioneer in the field of editing, especially choral and organ music from earlier centuries and prepared an edition of the Bach motets. No doubt, of course, this would have reflected the knowledge and taste of his time. As for the Greene voluntary arrangement: I am grateful to you for the copy – thank you. I enjoy Simon Johnson’s performance of it on the Priory DVD from St Paul’s - a really sparkling performance to my ears. I think it’s a fine arrangement – well, the Allegro, anyway. Certainly the marked speed is very slow, but all Baroque music was then performed much slower than we do today wasn't it, so I’m not sure I’d want to be so critical of West & Co. I think the part writing is excellent and the doubled octaves only occur in 3 bars I think (though that passage repeats a couple of times). This particular movement seems to me to suit this treatment and I’m going to play it on Sunday - if my feet are confident enough on my 1865 pedal board. I’ll try not to fall into the trap of “pleasing my audience”, though! In general I do agree with you, though: I’d much rather play or hear the originals than these arrangements. However there are times when a fuller sound is required – those trumpet tunes at weddings for example, and other big occasions.
  17. I agree about re-arranging 18th century English organ music to include pedals. However I'd make an exception for Simon Johnson's performance of Greene's "Voluntary in C minor (as arranged by West) on his St. Paul's DVD.
  18. Though Peterborough now has a nasard and sesquialtera on the choir - added in 2016, along with a tuba mirabilis
  19. Details here: http://www.rhinegoldjobs.co.uk/job/8433/director-of-music-in-cambridge
  20. http://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/8390/organ-petition-to-cardinal-sarah-close-to-10-000-signatures (I know the petition has been mentioned before.)
  21. Here is a link to the Allen site, giving some reasons for the installation - from Allen's point of view, of course! Apparently they thought it was intended for use in St. Peter's Square. Has St.Peter's ever had a satisfactory organ? https://www.allenorgan.com/www/allenews/mainallenews.html
  22. Yes - it's the Casella one that has been altered quite a lot - and some bars excised. The orchestra/accompanist needs to use the same version. I attach a list of the changes a choir using Casella needs to make to match orchestral parts. (The opposite of what you would need but it shows where the problems are.) I also have replacement sheets for the In terra (Casella to what Vivaldi wrote and visa versa). Notes for Vivaldi.docx
  23. You need to use the Ricordi score if the soloist is, as the Ricordi leaves chunks out!
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