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Organ In Valletta


Vox Humana
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Flippin' marvellous, innit? A mere two days after posting my diatribe about Maltese hunters I get asked whether I can give a recital "on a true mediaeval organ" at St John's Co-Cathedral in Valletta. It seems almost too coincidental to be true, but in fact I'm quite certain it was just that - a coincidence. Talk about ambivalent feelings! But principles are principles. So I turned the offer down with a polite, but honest explanation. It really hurt to do it though. The idea quite took my fancy and I would genuinely have loved to do it.

 

I looked up the instrument on the net, but it seems very little known. The only meaningful information about it seems to be this page on Ruffatti's site. The organ is an Italian one of 1579 so is strictly a Renaissance rather than a medieval instrument - but that is probably rather over-egging the case as far as the sound goes since it seems that only the display pipes have survived and even they have had to be revoiced.* From the photos it looks as if the organ has one manual, about ten stops and just a few pedal keys. Does anyone have a specification or any further information? It's all purely academic, of course, but I'm curious.

 

* Note the speculation about the fate of inner pipes. It rings all too true, unfortunately. It almost sounds like the desperate lengths to which alcoholics will go to get a drink.

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Vox, I consider that to be wholly admirabele - a wrench, I'm sure, but if you are convinced about an issue then it is vital that you stick to your guns. Plus, I wonder how your credibility on this discussion board would have fared had word got out that you were in Malta!

 

Best wishes

 

Peter

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  • 2 weeks later...

Cant help you directly - the only decent organ I ever played in Malta was the the organ in St Paul's Cathedral which is/was a 3 manual Norman and Beard ( I think).

 

This chap may be able to help you http://www.robertbuhagiar.com/

 

The organ mentioned on the Ruffatti web sit is not the main organ. I seem to recall the main organ is pretty conventional and may have more than a whiff of Ralph Downes to it.

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