Jump to content
Mander Organs
Jeremy Jones

Sunday Evensong On Bbc Radio 3

Recommended Posts

I caught the last 25 mins of the first(?) Choral Evensong on Radio 3 to be broadcast in its new Sunday slot, in this case live from Ely Cathedral. As someone who never gets to hear the broadcast on Wednesday afternoons, I actually welcome the new slot, although not if the trebles are as raw and screechy as was the case on Sunday.

 

However, it was worth enduring for what was a stunning voluntary, the opening Allegro from Widor's 6th Symphony. The Beeb made no indication as to whether Paul Trepte or Jonathan Lilley was playing, but it was riveting stuff. What also became clear was that despite Harrisons supposed back to basics rebuild of a few years ago, the organ still very much retains the capacity to breathe fire and sound pretty idiomatic in the French repertoire.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Roffensis
I caught the last 25 mins of the first(?) Choral Evensong on Radio 3 to be broadcast in its new Sunday slot, in this case live from Ely Cathedral. As someone who never gets to hear the broadcast on Wednesday afternoons, I actually welcome the new slot, although not if the trebles are as raw and screechy as was the case on Sunday.

 

However, it was worth enduring for what was a stunning voluntary, the opening Allegro from Widor's 6th Symphony. The Beeb made no indication as to whether Paul Trepte or Jonathan Lilley was playing, but it was riveting stuff. What also became clear was that despite Harrisons supposed back to basics rebuild of a few years ago, the organ still very much retains the capacity to breathe fire and sound pretty idiomatic in the French repertoire.

 

 

Hmmm. Speaking of which, I picked up a CD of this choir, with "Hear my prayer" on, recalling the excellent polydor recording of it from there, in 1975 (reissued on a Chandos CD) , thinking it would be as good.......

 

I think the latest organ rebuild was excellent, not so far back as 1908, but the great reeds tamed (new actually) and the job in much better balance. Above all, it still sounds like Ely, a veritable gem.

 

R

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I think the latest organ rebuild was excellent, not so far back as 1908, but the great reeds tamed (new actually) and the job in much better balance. Above all, it still sounds like Ely, a veritable gem.

 

R

 

As far as I know, only the tongues and shallots were replaced - and the wind pressures adjusted. Personally I think that this was a great pity.

 

In addition, I missed the broadcast and so I am now listening on the 'Listen again' service. It has to be said that the quality is dreadful - it sounds as if the choir and organ were recorded underwater. Therefore it is a little difficult to judge the sound of the trebles, the choir as a whole or, for that matter, the rebuilt organ.

 

However, it is clear that there are problems of intonation in the psalms. It is also not possible to discern whether or not the organist is playing descants or indulging in a spot of word-painting - again due to the quality (or lack of) in the recording, or whatever it is. Typically, the spoken word is quite clear and unsullied by distortion or any other aural impediment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The repertoire got a comprehensive panning on the BBC message boards before they were taken down. What did you chaps think? And what did you think to the responses, especially the organ accompaniment to the priest's sentences?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Lee Blick

Liked the Responses, although some old codger kept joining in which was a bit disconcerting.

 

Loved the McDowall St Martin's Service but I don't think Ely Cathedral Choir did justice to it. The S.S. Wesley was deadly dull. I really do wish choimasters would throw this sort of stuff away.

 

I think the bad quality is down to the compression of the audio file rather then the quality of the recording itself.

 

Those trebles need work on their higher registers to make it blend. It was less than a polished performance.

 

Next Sunday it is from Worcester Cathedral with the gorgeous old Hope, Nicholson, Wood organ Rodgers Electron Organ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As far as I know, only the tongues and shallots were replaced - and the wind pressures adjusted. Personally I think that this was a great pity.

 

In addition, I missed the broadcast and so I am now listening on the 'Listen again' service. It has to be said that the quality is dreadful - it sounds as if the choir and organ were recorded underwater. Therefore it is a little difficult to judge the sound of the trebles, the choir as a whole or, for that matter, the rebuilt organ.

 

However, it is clear that there are problems of intonation in the psalms. It is also not possible to discern whether or not the organist is playing descants or indulging in a spot of word-painting - again dut to the quality (or lack of) in the recording, or whatever it is. Typically, the spoken word is quite clear and unsullied by distortion or any other aural impediment.

 

 

There seems to be problems at Ely. A recent CD got a luke warm review. Its a shame as one of the first Choral LPs I bought was 'Service High and Anthems Clear' which was wll worn by the time I finished.

 

I wonder how Louise Reid is getting on with the gals? Talking abt Louise, I see that her husband's foundation-Peterborough-have advertised for a new post of Assistant Director of Music.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The repertoire got a comprehensive panning on the BBC message boards before they were taken down. What did you chaps think? And what did you think to the responses, especially the organ accompaniment to the priest's sentences?

Nick,

 

You deep link into the message board as follows:

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/mbradio3/F2620064...604&show=17

 

For what its worth I thouht the responses were quite imaginative (though the presentor's tuning was not!!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I wonder how Louise Reid is getting on with the gals? Talking abt Louise, I see that her husband's foundation-Peterborough-have advertised for a new post of Assistant Director of Music.

 

The current Assistant, Mark Duthie is off to succeed David Gedge at Brecon.

 

AJJ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I liked the responses too. It's certainly a practical way of helping the priest to stay somewhere in the general region of the right pitch!

 

Like pcnd I was using "Listen Again", the steaming for which seems even more awful than usual. My impression from that (which may not be entirely fair) was the same as parsfan's. To me the boys sounded extremely young and I wonder whether they have recently lost a number of their more experienced choristers. All cathedral choirs have this problem from time to time. That said, there was no denying that the singing sounded tired and under the note - men as well as boys.

 

It is such a shame. I have the Ely choir's recording of the three masses by Christopher Tye and the performances are really good. Not quite up to the best of Oxbridge, perhaps, but for an ordinary cathedral choir definitely a cut above average.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Like pcnd I was using "Listen Again", the steaming for which seems even more awful than usual.

Steaming, eh? Praps it was a bit too hot for you to handle, eh Voh??? B)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They could, of course, have had a flu epidemic. One seems to have struck my workplace over the weekend.

 

Another possibility is that they were under-rehearsed. Perhaps that's something we will have to get used to. After all, for some choirs, this will be their fourth sung service within 24 hours.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Steaming, eh? Praps it was a bit too hot for you to handle, eh Voh??? :)

 

To be honest, this sounded as if this was exactly what had happened to the broadcast....

 

 

 

.... and, for the record, he is 'Vox' - not 'Voh'....

 

 

B)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Like pcnd I was using "Listen Again", the steaming for which seems even more awful than usual.
To be honest, this sounded as if this was exactly what had happened to the broadcast....

.... and, for the record, he is 'Vox' - not 'Voh'....

B)

 

I too was listening via the internet (listen again), however I only got as far as the first psalm before switching off. This is very much a personal taste thing, but the introit (sorry Cecilia McDowall) just didn’t work for me. Whist the responses and 1st psalm were better, to save any further disappointment, I just switched off.

 

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I liked the responses too. It's certainly a practical way of helping the priest to stay somewhere in the general region of the right pitch!

 

If you want to hear some other accompanied responses, try "listen again" for last Sunday Worship on Radio 4. The responses are, I believe, by Roddy Williams and take the whole idea a stage further. Listen out for the collects during the second set, as well as for Robert Houssart on Hammond organ....

 

I have a feeling there will be some in this discussion who will not appreciate these!!!

 

Adrian Lucas

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Like pcnd I was using "Listen Again", the steaming for which seems even more awful than usual. My impression from that (which may not be entirely fair) was the same as parsfan's. To me the boys sounded extremely young and I wonder whether they have recently lost a number of their more experienced choristers. All cathedral choirs have this problem from time to time. That said, there was no denying that the singing sounded tired and under the note - men as well as boys.

 

Both the Listen Live and Listen Again services on the BBC websites use Real Player as the media player. When playing content from the internet, this player automatically adjust the quality based on available bandwidth (or connection capacity). If you are doing something else with the internet (e.g. file transfers, emailing, internet surfing) or sharing the connection with other computers in your house, that would decrease the connection capacity available for the Real Player. As a result, the player will downgrade the quality in order to keep playing.

 

To improve your listen experience, there are several things you may try. First, don't do anything else that requires the internet while listening. Second, get a faster connection. Good luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If you want to hear some other accompanied responses, try "listen again" for last Sunday Worship on Radio 4. The responses are, I believe, by Roddy Williams and take the whole idea a stage further. Listen out for the collects during the second set, as well as for Robert Houssart on Hammond organ....

 

I have a feeling there will be some in this discussion who will not appreciate these!!!

 

Adrian Lucas

 

Having just listened to Sunday Worship, you’re right Adrian, there will be some who won’t appreciate it. One thing that struck me was how familiar it all was, so I looked back and found THIS.

 

:)

 

BBC R3 Link

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Roffensis
AHA....Dèja vu! :)

 

 

Ah yes! Deja vu!

 

Hmm!! sometimes one cannot go back though!!

 

How is the Worcester job coming along?

 

Best wishes,

 

R

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
How is the Worcester job coming along?

 

We're just coming to the end of the preparatory work, having opened up the triforium arches. The new frame will be in progress soon and the rest of the year will be taken up with work off-site. Early 2008 looks like the start of real activity here...

 

Meanwhile, it's amazing to see the Cathedral opened up for the first time in 150 years with views right across the Quire from North to South.

 

Adrian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We're just coming to the end of the preparatory work, having opened up the triforium arches. The new frame will be in progress soon and the rest of the year will be taken up with work off-site. Early 2008 looks like the start of real activity here...

 

Meanwhile, it's amazing to see the Cathedral opened up for the first time in 150 years with views right across the Quire from North to South.

 

Adrian

 

As a matter of interest, any news about the rest of the organ project - ie crossing and westwards - timescale, spec. etc.?

 

AJJ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As a matter of interest, any news about the rest of the organ project - ie crossing and westwards - timescale, spec. etc.?

 

AJJ

 

At present we have permissions to move on the Transept organ, but are still in negotiations about the final design of the Nave organ, though its basic location has been agreed.

 

A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
At present we have permissions to move on the Transept organ, but are still in negotiations about the final design of the Nave organ, though its basic location has been agreed.

 

A

 

Thanks

 

AJJ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[Ely] I wonder how Louise Reid is getting on with the gals?

I had the good fortune to hear their debut Evensong last term.

They were brilliant!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I’ve just noticed that evensong is coming from Rochester this week. I always look forward to services/recordings from there, as the quality of singing is usually outstanding. I wonder what part DHM will sing? The BBC web site makes no mention if it will be the boys, girls or both singing?

 

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read somewhere this week that it is now the policy of BBC 3 to cease broadcasting all live performances, only recorded ones.

 

This is a pity as I always felt one of their studio live broadcasts usually had an edge on it (including the odd mistake) that an edited, perfect recording often lacks.

 

FF

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...