Jump to content
Mander Organ Builders Forum

Rome Florence


Recommended Posts

Just getting ready for a trip to Rome and Florence. Any suggestions (outside of the obvious ones) for churches or organs?

Any music sites of interest? Personal stories are what I’m looking for.

Thanks.

WM

 

We were in Rome in February. The Organist at St Peter's - Jim (James Goettsche) is very approachable, lovely man who is quite happy to chat about the organ there, etc. and interesting things like that he was taught by Germani...

The organ was a little disappointing to say the least, it's just such a massive building... you hear it over the PA system rather than in the flesh exept for those who are really near the case. It is used very little during the Mass compared to other places (Notre-Dame, Paris springs to mind!) and he told me he was using both North and South organs together - stereo!

 

Shame they never built this: http://www.ondamar.demon.co.uk/schemes/props/rome.htm

 

We didn't find any other organs, but many fantastic ice-cream shops - that's a different matter altogether!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No specific tip for churches - they're all stunning.

 

But, when in Florence, you should find the department store - "La Rinascente" - which is on the edge of one of the main squares (not the one with the Barghello, the one slightly further west, I think it's Piazza Republica, but I forget). It has a roof top café, which gives one of the best views of the Duomo from central Florence.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Patrick Coleman
Just getting ready for a trip to Rome and Florence. Any suggestions (outside of the obvious ones) for churches or organs?

Any music sites of interest? Personal stories are what I’m looking for.

Thanks.

WM

 

There is a Rinascente in Rome also on the Via del Corso. Giolitti's ice cream parlour is also worth a visit, and I challenge you to eat a 'Coppa Olimpica' there before or after a full meal.

 

One of the most fun organs in Rome was in the Chiesa Nuova (Santa Maria in Vallicella) on Corso Vittorio Emanuele. (There are lots of lovely bars and restaurants in the side streets in this area!) I played it on several occasions between 1979 and 1983 when we students from the English College 'provided the ceremonies' there for the Feast of Saint Philip Neri (May 26th) and other occasions. At that time, it was close to derelict, but enough of it worked to supply an impressive sound, despite the clanky action and unpredictable stops. Access to the organ was through the community house and over the church roof, and you ended up in one of two matching balconies over the chancels. The Vaughan Williams 'Old 100th' sounded quite unique with a trumpeter in the balcony with you, and the farty low pressure reeds were wonderfully vulgar. It has I understand been restored in the past ten years, and I'm sure if you rang the doorbell and asked they would let you play.

 

The Conacher in All Saints Anglican church is also worth looking at. That's in Via del Babuino, not far from the Spanish Steps. It was well rebuilt by Mascioni, and I can get you a personal introduction there if you want. The chapel in the English College has an interesting Tamburini instrument, which gave me and many other exiles great pleasure during our long training.

 

The most important thing Italy has to teach us is how to have fun in life, so please make sure that whatever you do, you have a great time!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The chapel in the English College has an interesting Tamburini instrument, which gave me and many other exiles great pleasure during our long training.

 

I'd agree with that: I played it a few times when I stayed in the College - as I recall it hs a crescendo pedal (?) - but it was somewhat out of tune when I was there last (Holy Week in the late 70s - it may have been tuned by then!).

 

Peter

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Patrick Coleman
I'd agree with that: I played it a few times when I stayed in the College - as I recall it hs a crescendo pedal (?) - but it was somewhat out of tune when I was there last (Holy Week in the late 70s - it may have been tuned by then!).

 

Peter

 

It was refurbished in the late 1970s - I think possibly 78/79, though I can't remember exactly - all the TP action redone. The low pressure reeds (oboe & clarinet) at the front of the case, for ease of tuning, went out of tune very rapidly. In the hot humid Roman summer weather, the clarinet would often be out after a day or so.

 

Yes it has a nasty crescendo pedal, and also a second row of stops as a sort of programmable piston. Stops are rocker tabs. Both manuals are exactly the same, and the whole thing is enclosed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I too have played at the English College, (having a friend in the seminary) and I also remember the tuning to be somewhat wayward, possibly due to the organs' close proximity to the ceiling in the chapel - God it's hot up there.

 

The organ in the 'other' seminary, the Beda college is also a Tamborini, with a judicious amount of extension, I recall!

 

You might look in at St Paul's without the walls - I played for an ordination there a couple of years ago. Strange instrument, and much much smaller than you would imagine for such a huge space. Reeds were unusable. An interesting experience!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...
Guest Patrick Coleman
Just getting ready for a trip to Rome and Florence. Any suggestions (outside of the obvious ones) for churches or organs?

Any music sites of interest? Personal stories are what I’m looking for.

Thanks.

WM

 

Did you go, and did you have fun?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...