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RICHARD HILLS AT SOUTHAMPTON GUILDHALL - SATURDAY 11TH JULY

 

Just a reminder to all that top classical and theatre organist Richard Hills will be playing both consoles of the incredible Southampton Guildhall Compton concert organ at his performance this coming Saturday afternoon at 3pm.

 

Details at:

 

www.guildhall-compton.org.uk

 

An organ and organist not to be missed!

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There is adequate coverage of forthcoming concerts provided by Steve Dunk and under www.organrecitals.com courtesy of Stephen Smith, featuring all different organ builders, so this should avoid too many individual postings hopefully.

Colin Richell.

Why should the existence of the site mentioned above, whatever its merits, deter individuals from posting on this (or any other) site?

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There is adequate coverage of forthcoming concerts provided by Steve Dunk and under www.organrecitals.com courtesy of Stephen Smith, featuring all different organ builders, so this should avoid too many individual postings hopefully.

Colin Richell.

 

 

I agree Paul, Organ recital.com does not give all the recitals there are, unless someone has put them there in the first place, and like many forum members, this "board" is my next port of call after checking my e-mail. So as they say, "you read it here first"

 

Peter

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I agree Paul, Organ recital.com does not give all the recitals there are, unless someone has put them there in the first place, and like many forum members, this "board" is my next port of call after checking my e-mail. So as they say, "you read it here first"

 

Peter

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Obviously I would hope that all concert organisers would automatically notify organrecitals.com and Steve Dunk, especially if punters do not search the Mander web site. so that the particular concert is notified to as many people as possible.The two concerts mentioned are already listed, and I have made sure of that.

There may be people who are not aware of organrecitals.com, but will now be persuaded to look at this on a weekly basis, and also subscribe with Steve Dunk accordingly.

all credit to Steve and Stephen who give much of their free time to produce the relevant web sites. and just imagine how much this free publicity is worth !

I make the point again that I would not attend a concert because a particular make of organ is being featured. I am more interested in the Recitalist, venue and the condition of the said organ.and this does not seem to be understood looking at some of the postings. Perhaps one day, however Manders will advertise on their own web site concerts where Mander organs are being played if this is not done already, or would this be regarded as unethical ?

Colin Richell.

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I always look at organ recital.com, to see whats on, its just there have been recitals?concerts, call them what you will, given here over a period of time, that may not have been advertised at the above .com

Peter

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I always look at organ recital.com, to see whats on, its just there have been recitals?concerts, call them what you will, given here over a period of time, that may not have been advertised at the above .com

Peter

 

Stephen Smith's efforts are extremely noteworthy and provide a wonderful resource, (and note: this is all voluntary work and unpaid from start to finish!) but Peter is absolutely correct. Not all venues are covered by www.organrecitals because of the thoroughness of detail which Stehen sets out to provide [photographs of each venue, specifications and maps linked in etc. etc.] I know for instance that a good quarter of my UK recitals this year do not qualify for coverage there because they are not given at venues which he covers. This is not to criticise him at all, merely stating that he has to define his parameters because the job is such a large one already!

 

It's an extravagant remark to make, perhaps, but I believe Stephen and his colleagues do more for the cause of pipe organs in this country than anyone else.

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I admire the work that Stephen does to make available the listings. And the recital that Simon Lindley is giving at Durham Cathedral in October 2009 ( which my father organises for his Masonic fundraiser, 200 people attended there last year) is advertised on OR.com

 

Peter

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Stephen Smith's efforts are extremely noteworthy and provide a wonderful resource, (and note: this is all voluntary work and unpaid from start to finish!) but Peter is absolutely correct. Not all venues are covered by www.organrecitals because of the thoroughness of detail which Stehen sets out to provide [photographs of each venue, specifications and maps linked in etc. etc.] I know for instance that a good quarter of my UK recitals this year do not qualify for coverage there because they are not given at venues which he covers. This is not to criticise him at all, merely stating that he has to define his parameters because the job is such a large one already!

 

It's an extravagant remark to make, perhaps, but I believe Stephen and his colleagues do more for the cause of pipe organs in this country than anyone else.

 

Absolutely, I don't venture to the big smoke often these days, but when I have, a quick look on the iphone and hey presto, venue/time/player at fingertips. The last three trips have resulted in attendance at lunchtime recitals (and with a few pounds in the collection tray!) Sadly, nothing on near me in Suffolk this week.

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There is adequate coverage of forthcoming concerts provided by Steve Dunk and under www.organrecitals.com

Suggest to anyone involved in advertising for an audience that they should restrict their adverts to a single outlet because multiple adverts are redundant, and wait for the hysterical laughter...

 

Paul

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I would not attend a concert because a particular make of organ is being featured. I am more interested in the Recitalist, venue and the condition of the said organ.and this does not seem to be understood looking at some of the postings.

Colin Richell.

 

I think you'll find that It is fully understood.

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Suggest to anyone involved in advertising for an audience that they should restrict their adverts to a single outlet because multiple adverts are redundant, and wait for the hysterical laughter...

 

Paul

...suggest to anyone in business that advertising is immoral or unethical, and wait for the same hysterical laughter...

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I am more interested in the Recitalist, venue and the condition of the said organ.

 

But not the works being played, apparently :(

 

Mind you, it has to be said that promoters of recitals - unlike the promoters of operas, orchestral concerts, et. al. - seem to think the works being performed are of little consequence, as they rarely give much (if any) advance notice of them. Imagine turning up at Covent Garden not knowing whether one was going to hear Handel, Wagner, Mozart or Birtwistle!

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But not the works being played, apparently :(

 

Mind you, it has to be said that promoters of recitals - unlike the promoters of operas, orchestral concerts, et. al. - seem to think the works being performed are of little consequence, as they rarely give much (if any) advance notice of them. Imagine turning up at Covent Garden not knowing whether one was going to hear Handel, Wagner, Mozart or Birtwistle!

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... presumably because recitalists often change the programe on the day...

 

I don't think that's something that happens with anyone often, and I never have.

 

Advertising recitals is an art in itself: who is the target audience? Will your target audience be interested/excited by the fact that there's a huge tuba/32' reed/other large sticking-out party horn/chorus of Dulcianas, etc, etc, or by the recitalist, or by the fact the console is on view by some means or other, or the fame of the building attached to the recitalist's name, or by the pieces being played.

Possibly all of the above for those from the 'organ world' probably the last two or three for the rest of the vaguely interested population...

Advertise that the programme will include Widor V, or some well-known transcription like the William Tell Overture and you immediately double your chances of success IMHO...

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I don't think that's something that happens with anyone often, and I never have.

 

Advertising recitals is an art in itself: who is the target audience? Will your target audience be interested/excited by the fact that there's a huge tuba/32' reed/other large sticking-out party horn/chorus of Dulcianas, etc, etc, or by the recitalist, or by the fact the console is on view by some means or other, or the fame of the building attached to the recitalist's name, or by the pieces being played.

Possibly all of the above for those from the 'organ world' probably the last two or three for the rest of the vaguely interested population...

Advertise that the programme will include Widor V, or some well-known transcription like the William Tell Overture and you immediately double your chances of success IMHO...

 

"Themed" recitals might also be an idea; a common thread running thorugh the items in ther programme might arouse interest. For example I am planning a recital called "Music from Britain and France" and, being in Cardiff, I am including two Welsh-connected pieces. I also like to slip in at least one obscure item - this time for example I am including John Bennett's Voluntary VI, which I don't think gets many outings!

 

Juat a couple of thoughts...

 

Peter

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I don't think that's something that happens with anyone often, and I never have.

 

Advertising recitals is an art in itself: who is the target audience? Will your target audience be interested/excited by the fact that there's a huge tuba/32' reed/other large sticking-out party horn/chorus of Dulcianas, etc, etc, or by the recitalist, or by the fact the console is on view by some means or other, or the fame of the building attached to the recitalist's name, or by the pieces being played.

Possibly all of the above for those from the 'organ world' probably the last two or three for the rest of the vaguely interested population...

Advertise that the programme will include Widor V, or some well-known transcription like the William Tell Overture and you immediately double your chances of success IMHO...

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yes you are right Nick I should have mentioned the programme, although some concert organisers do not always provide details of the music to be played, in advance presumably because recitalists often change the programe on the day.

Colin Richell.

I've lost count of the number of times I've been to a recital only to find the programme covered in tippex and a photocopied insert added.

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I've lost count of the number of times I've been to a recital only to find the programme covered in tippex and a photocopied insert added.

'Tis said (by the chap who booked him) that, many years ago, when Carlo Curley came to play the foghorn, he tried the instrument and promptly changed the whole programme. To the drop-jawed remonstrances of the impressario, Carlo just smiled and pointed to the small print in the contract!

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I think there are several fundamental reasons why hosts of organ recitals (in general, acknowledging the exceptions appropriately) struggle to generate audiences:

 

i) the organ, more than any other instrument, is badly played in situations where the audience has paid to hear it. And, actually, in general in public situations.

ii) organists, still, have the habit to programme second-rate, dull music (mostly, I believe, due to a lack of in-depth knowledge of the repertoire, again this is a generalisation and there are happy exceptions)

iii) the lack of professional PR afforded to other art-music (and other arts) establishments. And, more specifically, a lack of imaginitive, sustainable, widespread PR.

 

I think, if these things could be effectively tackled, people would return to the organ. Easier said than done, of course, but the answer doesn't lie, as so many people seem to think, in dumbing-down the programming. Why should the organ have to dumb-down more than any other instrument? Can you imagine Evgeny Kissin playing the piano-equivalent of 'Penguin's Playtime?' And he doesn't struggle to attract an audience...

 

Can I once again direct your attention to the Orgelpark in Amsterdam, which is doing extraordinary things (with, admittedly, an extraordinary budget) to attract people back to the organ? Or consider the remarkable PR and associated audiences which flock daily to the events of the annual Toulouse les Orgues festival?

 

Greetings

 

Bazuin

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Further to the comments about organ recital organisers, there were one or two interesting moments during Dr Francis Jackson's recital yesterday afternoon at Ally Pally. On two occasions Tannoy announcements could be heard filtering through from another part of the complex (the Ice Rink, perhaps) and the custodians of the organ seemed to think nothing of wandering around during the recital, both in the organ gallery (in full view) and in front of the close-circuit TV screens). This was rather distracting and a discourtesy to Dr Jackson whose playing was as vivid and hugely enjoyable as ever. His programme was beautifully judged, though he perplexed one or two of the locals in the audience who couldn't work out why the encore wasn't "on the programme". FAJ enjoyed himself so much that he added another encore - the Cocker Tuba Tune - which the organ just about coped with! It was a memorable occasion. Astonish to think that FAJ first heard the Ally Pally organ live in 1936 but hadn't given a recital on it until yesterday, 73 years later. Where were the press and TV crews to record this event? Did they give it a mention in their local bulletins beforehand?

 

MKR

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Further to the comments about organ recital organisers, there were one or two interesting moments during Dr Francis Jackson's recital yesterday afternoon at Ally Pally. On two occasions Tannoy announcements could be heard filtering through from another part of the complex (the Ice Rink, perhaps) and the custodians of the organ seemed to think nothing of wandering around during the recital, both in the organ gallery (in full view) and in front of the close-circuit TV screens). This was rather distracting and a discourtesy to Dr Jackson whose playing was as vivid and hugely enjoyable as ever. His programme was beautifully judged, though he perplexed one or two of the locals in the audience who couldn't work out why the encore wasn't "on the programme". FAJ enjoyed himself so much that he added another encore - the Cocker Tuba Tune - which the organ just about coped with! It was a memorable occasion. Astonish to think that FAJ first heard the Ally Pally organ live in 1936 but hadn't given a recital on it until yesterday, 73 years later. Where were the press and TV crews to record this event? Did they give it a mention in their local bulletins beforehand?

 

MKR

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