Pierre Lauwers Posted May 10, 2005 Share Posted May 10, 2005 As far as the continental romantic organ is concerned, we may assume with a fair confidence it ermerged from a synthesis of the southern german baroque organ (with for instance Josef Gabler, among others) with Abt Vogler's ideas. Vogler himself did little more than destroying valuable ancient organs to end up with questionable prototypes, but E-F Walcker turned his ideas into the Paulskirche Frankfurt organ (1833), which we may see as the first genuine romantic organ. But... This splendid theory needs certainly to be internationalized, because of a man named William Hill. According to an article from Mr Nicholas Thistlethwaite in "Organist's review", Februar 1999: -Hill joined the organ-builder Elliot in 1815. Together they built traditional organs. -1820 began an "Insular movement" towards an expansion in scale of the english organ. An then: "Beginning in 1829, the firm was responsible for a series of instruments which for size, mechanical ingenuity and tonal novelty, were unprecedented in english experience. Christ's Hospital (1830), Oldham Parish Church (1830), York Minster (1829-30), Birmingham Towh Hall (1834), Christchurch, Newgate street (1831,1834), the Chapel Royal, St-James Palace (1837) and St John's College, Cambridge (1838) all exhibited novel features which distinguish them from the organs of Snetzler, England and Thomas Elliot himself. Among these features were Pedal pipes, German pedal boards, CC keyboard compasses, manual doubles, unprecedently wide scales, Posaune and Cornopean reeds, imitative registers, large Swell divisions (some of almost full compass) and duplication of chorus ranks..." So the period is remarkably the same as E-F Walcker's. A german influence seems to be possible (compasses, Posaune). A certain middle-European influence is of course due to Johannes Snetzler (to which we owe the Dulciana, originally a Dolcan), while the Swell was of course already a time-honored feature of the british organ. I would be very interested with any idea about: -What was this "Insular Movement"? -Where did William Hill find inspiration for what seems to be, along with Walcker, the first romantic organs? (Cavaillé-Coll's first one dates 1841, and was rather a transition organ). Best wishes, Pierre Lauwers. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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