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Pedal Mutations And Mixtures


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I thought that just meant it only went down to FFFF (24')

 

 

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I think we've all made that mistake, but it is a quint nevertheless.

 

In that wonderful acoustic, the gravitas which that sub-quint produces is really quite extrordinary, and if I were to try and describe the sound, it would be half-way between the effect of a 32ft Open and a 32ft reed.

 

MM

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Guest Nigel ALLCOAT
AFAIK, That's Principaal 24', sounding a quint UNDER the 16 foot (resultant 64' - the first ever?)

 

I think that you will find that it is PRINCIPAAL 22 voet (actually 21 1/3 ft sounding a fourth below - so G when playing bottom C). I think that you would not enjoy hearing an F underpinning a C major/minor chord! It comes from the organ built 1639-1645, about 80 years before Frans Casper Schnitger came on the Alkmaar scene.

 

Best wishes,

Nigel

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I think that you will find that it is PRINCIPAAL 22 voet (actually 21 1/3 ft sounding a fourth below - so G when playing bottom C). I think that you would not enjoy hearing an F underpinning a C major/minor chord! It comes from the organ built 1639-1645, about 80 years before Frans Casper Schnitger came on the Alkmaar scene.

 

Best wishes,

Nigel

 

 

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Oh dear!

 

The facts appear to be this:-

 

The original Hagabeer organs, from 1645, had a CC-d pedal compass, and this quint register was called "Principaal 24 voet": the pipes being in the case.

 

It was called 24 voet because that is a multiple of 3 voet, which was the old designation for the 2.2/3 pitch on the manuals.

 

Nevertheless, the same register was re-named "Principaal 22 voet" by F C Schnitger, and remained as such until subsequent alterations to the organ. So in effect, it was always a sub-quint of 21.1/3 pitch, situated in the organ-case.

 

When the organ was altered subesquently, a number of new wooden pipes were made, which took the pitch down to 32ft, and presumably, the pipes in the case were somehow re-fed to work diferently at unison pitch rather than at the sub-quint.

 

The idea was not a success, due to winding problems, and when I first played the organ at Alkmaar, the 32ft bottom 7 pipes had been removed and were stacked up against the rear wall of the church behind the organ, and whilst I may be wrong, I seem to recall that the 22 foot was at unison pitch, and stopped working below bottom G of the pedals. Because of this, I don't think my host and reigstrant drew the stop at all.

 

In the Flentrop re-build/restoration, the scheme of things involved taking the organ back to the original disposition of the F C Schnitger instrument, and naturally, this included the re-instatement of the old 24 voet or 22 voet Principaal (whichever you care to choose). In fact, Schnitger had called it 22 voet, which was a lot more accurate than the original designation.

 

So you can take it as fact, as Nigel rightly points out, that the name is now "Principaal 22 voet," and it is a metal 21.1/3 quint of great subtlety and effectiveness. I know of nothing, anywhere, which is quite like it, and you hear it add tremendous gravity to the pedal line when it is drawn with other stops.

 

Diverting the topic slightly, the A-kerk in Groningen, (largely by Arp Schitger) has a 10.2/3 quint which is just marvellous, and is often the last stop to be drawn for the big effect. I have a splendid recording of the Bruhns G mjor played on this organ, and when the quint is added, it adds a terrific gravitas to the pedals on the final bottom G.

 

Quite clever people those Schnitgers!

 

MM

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  • 6 months later...
I think that the Atlantic City Midmer-Losh has the 64' Dulzian extended and has quint stops at 42-2/3', 21-1/3' etc, so if you used the 64' & 42-2/3' you could probably get a resultant 128' stop. Its sort of a resultant reed!

 

JA

 

yes i found that quite interesting to find out about the midmer losh, and it is the only organ in the world which gives a resultant 128ft. That would really shake things up.

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yes i found that quite interesting to find out about the midmer losh, and it is the only organ in the world which gives a resultant 128ft. That would really shake things up.

 

Yes it is quite interesting.

I was reading on the ACCHOS website a couple of days ago, that when Midmer-Losh were installing the organ they had problems with the bricks in the ceiling falling down to the floor because of the shaking that the 64' (and presumably the 128' resultant) caused.

 

JA

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Yes it is quite interesting.

I was reading on the ACCHOS website a couple of days ago, that when Midmer-Losh were installing the organ they had problems with the bricks in the ceiling falling down to the floor because of the shaking that the 64' (and presumably the 128' resultant) caused.

 

JA

 

Yes, they also had problems with rivets shaking loose in the roof beams. What i would love to know is how does that organ sound it its new acoustic?

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Yes, they also had problems with rivets shaking loose in the roof beams. What i would love to know is how does that organ sound it its new acoustic?

 

 

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They never shake lose.....complete tosh.

 

What they do is spin in the holes and wear the metal out, and if you believe that this happened with just a bit of organ music going one, you will believe anything! It only ever happens in the aero-industry or other high-stress/high-vibration situations.

 

On the other hand, they may just have been crap rivets which were never properly hammered.

 

As for the bricks....well.....there is mortar, and there is mortar.

 

MM

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  • 1 month later...
Double quint? Is there one anywhere??? :lol:

 

Yes - on the Pedal Organ of the Compton instrument at Saint Osmund's, Parkstone, Dorset. The stop is labelled 'Double Quint 21 1/3', as far as I can remember. This church is currently being used by the local Greek Orthodox congregation and the organ is now (January 2008) in a bad state of repair.

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Yes - on the Pedal Organ of the Compton instrument at Saint Osmund's, Parkstone, Dorset. The stop is labelled 'Double Quint 21 1/3', as far as I can remember. This church is currently being used by the local Greek Orthodox congregation and the organ is now (January 2008) in a bad state of repair.

 

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I'm sure I've mentioned the big Hill organ at St.Margaret's, Ilkley, where I stood in for an injured organist and choirmaster for about a year. (Very good choral tradition).

 

Now a four-manual instrument, it was originally built as a three-manual. There was never a shortage of money for the building of this magnificent "arts and crafts" church; designed I believe, by Temple Moor. Unfortunately, the church was never quite high enough (except for the churchmanship) to accomodate a full length 32ft, and as a consequence, there was (and still is) an unusual 32ft Open Metal in the magnificent oak organ-case, which runs down to low GG, and then becomes a sub-quint below that at 21.1/3ft pitch. It works jolly well in the very big acoustic.

 

The church was a favourite of Sir John Betjamin, and he was very good friends with the then vicar, the Rev.Tom Livesely.

 

This is the church which now has, as parish priest, a certain gentleman by the name of Dr David Hope.

 

MM

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Guest Patrick Coleman
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I'm sure I've mentioned the big Hill organ at St.Margaret's, Ilkley, where I stood in for an injured organist and choirmaster for about a year. (Very good choral tradition).

 

This is the church which now has, as parish priest, a certain gentleman by the name of Dr David Hope.

 

MM

 

I think you'll find he has retired from there.

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I think you'll find he has retired from there.

 

 

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That shows how in touch I am with local events, doesn't it?

 

Events have a habit of overtaking one. I always expect to see Alan Bennett in Betty's tea-rooms in Ilkley, or David Hockney drawing dogs at some exhibition or other, but the chances are, they're probably being wheeled around corridors by people in white.

 

At this rate, we'll have no true Yorkshiremen left.

 

Terrible business.

 

MM

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