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biggestelk

St Pauls' 'refurbishment'.

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Now please don't let anyone take this posting as an implied criticism of the present St.Paul's organ, merely a response to recent comments above:

 

Re: Improvements to St.Pauls - another section in the dome?

 

It was a really pleasant surprise when, the last time I gave a recital at St.Paul's, the space under the dome had been thoroughly filled with scaffolding etc. which meant that the audience/congregation had to sit in the Quire.  This meant that the recital they got was effectively only on the Chancel Section.  One might think this would be a draw-back, but in practice it meant that I had the resources and full flexibility of four manuals.

 

IMHO, when an audience/congregation sits in the Nave or under the dome, the Father Willis 4-decker is de facto relegated to a subsidiary role - the whole instrument becomes virtually a glorified one-manual or, (at best) a three-decker comprising echo organ (the Willis) a big Great (the dome) and some serious fanfare trumpets (the West End).

 

I would support the (maybe in fun) suggestion that there is both musical and physical room for another division of the Dome organ - providing two manuals-worth of dome material. I would endorse this as an improvement.

 

The other slightly less costly answer is to get the recitalists play on the chancel organ much more and use the present dome organ much less. Then you have the resources of a five (or arguably six) manual organ. All of the chancel organ can be heard very clearly in dome area, but only as long as the background noise from tourists is non-existent or kept to a minimum (and this is something which would apply in any large building, of course).

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I would support the (maybe in fun) suggestion that there is both musical and physical room for another division of the Dome organ - providing two manuals-worth of dome material. I would endorse this as an improvement.

 

One might almost (just for the fun of it) think about putting some 'Worcester' in there (Royal Diaphone 32' :P )...

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One might almost (just for the fun of it) think about putting some 'Worcester' in there (Royal Diapone 32' :P )...

 

================

 

 

Don't forget the redundant Willis/Mander at Sheffield Cathedral!

 

It could be scattered around the building like it is now.

 

It's time to think BIG! Passau Cathedral here we come....nay....move over Atlantic City!!

 

MM

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================

Don't forget the redundant Willis/Mander at Sheffield Cathedral!

 

It could be scattered around the building like it is now.

 

It's time to think BIG!  Passau Cathedral here we come....nay....move over Atlantic City!!

 

MM

 

Was that all of Atlantic City, or just the 100" reeds ? They and the percussion section should fit just snugly in the SE Quarter Gallery, thus providing augmented resources for more appropriate accompaniment of praise and worship songs than is possible when just using ordinary organ tone.

 

Brian Childs

 

PS Before anyone has a fit, this suggestion is very, very tongue in cheek !

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Alternatively, simply leave it as it is - with the exception of the addition of a divided pedal, of course....

 

It is, after all, a very wonderful instrument.*

 

Paul, sorry to ask - I am familiar with many of the acronyms, short-hand and slang phrases currently in use on the 'net but what does IMHO mean, please?

 

I am probably being a litle slow or dopey but the only thing which currently comes to mind is In my humble opinion - izzat what you meant? :):P

 

* I was going to use the epithet sexy but I had difficulty imagining that it would get past the moderator.

 

(There will, of course be a four-letter hole in the previous sentence....)

 

lmao

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Alternatively, simply leave it as it is - with the exception of the addition of a divided pedal, of course....

 

It is, after all, a very wonderful instrument.*

 

Paul, sorry to ask - I am familiar with many of the acronyms, short-hand and slang phrases currently in use on the 'net but what does IMHO mean, please?

 

I am probably being a litle slow or dopey but the only thing which currently comes to mind is In my humble opinion - izzat what you meant? :unsure:  :blink:

 

* I was going to use the epithet sexy but I had difficulty imagining that it would get past the moderator.

 

(There will, of course be a four-letter hole in the previous sentence....)

 

lmfao

 

 

I have always taken this to be "in my humble opinion" but that was a guess and so probaly wrong.

 

Brian Childs

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Guest Roffensis

I don't think it needs any additions in the Dome or anywhere else for that matter, it's fine as it is, and I reckon it will stay as it is. I also believe that on this one, common sense will prevail. That will make a refreshing change in this wonderfully musical country of ours!! :P

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improvements
? Wow!

 

 

to tie liverpool....a bombarde mirabilis hooded of extra thick pipe metal bolted to the soundboard

This is so that the organ can be heard in Liverpool? Will it have a govt health warning if built?

Dominic

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improvements to st paul could include a clarion 4 to complement the dome posaune16 and trumpet 8 on 17" wind. also the chancel swell can use a 4ft flute and a quint mixture. the altar can use a quasi echo/ethereal section with sylvestrina and sylvestrina celeste, cor de nuit, flutedamour8 fernflute, voxhumana and the like. the quarter galleries abutting the dome could be assigned a family of tone....one of pure string tone, one of flute and one reed and u already have theNE diapason chorus. the back gallery can use more ...a swell with pedal to make for a 2 manual plus bombarde using the diapason chorus back there as a great and a new large swell with english and continental reed choruses and a sound pedal with 32ft basses of metal. that will provide some solid foundation back there. still u need one stop on 50 inches to tie liverpool....a bombarde mirabilis hooded of extra thick pipe metal bolted to the soundboard so it does not fly off as did one state trumpet at st john the divine one time.

 

Maybe it's just me, but last time I heard St.Paul's (La Nativite by Scott), I didn't realy miss these proposed addtions ....

 

Surely, enough is enough, isn't it?

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Guest paul@trinitymusic.karoo.co.uk
Maybe it's just me, but last time I heard St.Paul's (La Nativite by Scott), I didn't realy miss these proposed addtions ....

 

Surely, enough is enough, isn't it?

 

 

I agree with steve b. that a 4 foot flute on the Swell would be not only nice but pretty useful too. I gather that Manders were conscious of the fame of this swell division and therefore felt obliged to return it to its original size and stoplist - but I'm sure that at some stage a later Willis had indeed added a Lieblich Flute which went missing again at the rebuild/restoration.

 

In passing, I am pretty convinced that Cecil Clutton didn 't like 4' flutes in general, I base this on the observation that they are often missing in his schemes where one would expect to find them. Always around in plenty are Krummhorns/Cromornes and Cornets Separe. My theory is (and it's impolite, I know) this design feature is closely connected to the only style of music he could actually play - viz. (manuals-only) French baroque. You will also find extra 8' Chimney Flutes (with prominent upper harmonics) added wherever CC has been adviser - regardless of the voicing character of the (mostly original) stops around them.

 

In many ways he was the true successor to Lt.Col.George Dixon and exerted a remarkable influence over clergy, organ builders and players though he was not one of them.

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Maybe it's just me, but last time I heard St.Paul's (La Nativite by Scott), I didn't realy miss these proposed addtions ....

 

Surely, enough is enough, isn't it?

I agree. I played the intrument for a couple of Evensongs about 25 years ago (back in the days when I could play a bit) and I have to say that the Dome Organ is quite devastating enough as it is, thank you very much! On paper the Swell looks as if it could do with a Quint Mixture, but in practice the Cornet is sufficient and anything more tinkly might compromise the integrity of the division. Just my impression on a very fleeting acquaintance with the machine. As for dotting pipes all over the building, well, I've never much liked making music by remote control - but I appreciate that that's a can of worms; you pays your money and you takes your choice.

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Guest Roffensis

Organs can become oddities, and additions can cloud original work. The last rebuild was to restore the original Willis of 1872 as close as possible to a complete chancel organ to fulfill its primary purpose there. The nave section, not intended to be used as a part of the main organ as such but to lead singing in the nave west end, together with the new Dome chorus for those there, have all proved most successful. The time comes to say enough, and the rational approach that was taken by the builders in 1973 can only be applauded. One can often think of additions and just go on and on, but maintenance is one issue, musicality is another. It would be wrong to cloud the original tone-with even its limitations-by adding more. Quint mixtures were more typical of Hill than Willis, and the present mixtures are, for me, more than adequate. This organ could very well end up of huge proportions. For me, the chancel organ is a gem, and was restored very well indeed, very logically. I don't think much will be going to happen now anyway. :(

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... a 4 foot flute on the Swell would be not only nice but pretty useful too.  I gather that Manders were conscious of the fame of this swell division and therefore felt obliged to return it to its original size and stoplist - but I'm sure that at some stage a later Willis had indeed added a Lieblich Flute which went missing again at the rebuild/restoration.

 

 

This is how rumours start!

 

Look on NPOR or even better buy the fantastic book by Niland and Plumley about the organ in St Paul's and then you will see that there has never been a 4' flute in the Swell. The only change to the Swell since 1872 came in 1977 when the Vox Humana was added.

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st paul has a long organ history which has taken a breather for a spell. as future space and money meet one another there additions revisions portativs entire additional organs like we' re seeing in washington cathedral gallery may be the result. so all u conservative english wait till the next generation come to the helm. u will see gallery II strings gallery III flute Gallery IV reed west end swell west end pedal west end bombatde mirabilis central space portativ and all kinds of gadgetry.

Fighting words! Conservative? Nah, I reckon it's more the lack of money which forces us to design organs rather than allowing them to grow like a fungus. :(

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Conservative? Well, I tend to believe we are hundred times more conservative

in southern Belgium (a little less in Flanders, because there is still some money

there. But it won't last long)

Pierre

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Guest Nigel ALLCOAT

What a glorious instrument (in the right hands and feet). As Mr Lucas says, the 4 manual is ideal. The rest is surely just for hammering home melodies for a vast congregation. If there is a largesse swilling around the Cathedral waiting to be used, do the Harris thing. Go for a complete West End instrument - unhitched and only mechanical so nobody is led into temptation and ungodliness to Passaurize.

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Guest paul@trinitymusic.karoo.co.uk
This is how rumours start!

 

Look on NPOR or even better buy the fantastic book by Niland and Plumley about the organ in St Paul's and then you will see that there has never been a 4' flute in the Swell. The only change to the Swell since 1872 came in 1977 when the Vox Humana was added.

 

 

 

I humbly apologise.

I was sure I knew this one, but since I can't prove it, I hereby back off!

As a poor excuse, my resource books are all packed up and have been for nearly a year.

 

Sorry folks!

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so all u conservative english wait till the next generation come to the helm. u will see gallery II strings gallery III flute Gallery IV reed west end swell west end pedal west end bombatde mirabilis central space portativ and all kinds of gadgetry.

 

Hmm, it may be that this 'next generation' is well educated and just simply understands what the St. Paul's Willis/Mander is about and subsequently respect and use it like we're used to respect and use the baroque organs we have overhere.

For sure - no living soul would want to add the likes of quoted (in my opnion) insanities to musical monuments as Grauhof, Weingarten, St. Maximin, Haarlem or Alkmaar (to name just 5). So why on earth dó add them to St.Paul's? One also wouldn't pimp a DB9, would one?

 

And if you allow me, I don't exactly call myself 'conservative' and I'm not English either.

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