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Birmingham Town Hall


willy
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Hi John

I found a little article on the web about the Bham townn hall organ console being removed from the hall to Bethnal Green, and accompanying this were a couple of pictures, and whilst they didn't show the whole console, what bit they did show suggested some damage to the keys. It also looked (and it could just have been the way the photo was taken) that the 5th manual was missing. Was it removed and what was the state of the console when you got it back to the works? When do you envisage it being returned to B'ham?

I notice that you are going to have another go at the old Willis reeds on the bombarde. If you make as good a job of them as you did with the Harrison trombas at the RAH they should really be something!!

kind regards

 

Bill

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Guest Geoff McMahon

There is a little bit of damage to the keys, but nothing which can't be repaired. In fact, the 5th manual IS still there, but the plans are to remove it and just to use the couplers to play the Bombard division. They never use the 5th manual on its own, so it will allow us to bring the music desk down to a better position.

 

We too hope to make an improvement to the Bombard reeds!

 

John Pike Mander

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  • 2 months later...
There is a little bit of damage to the keys, but nothing which can't be repaired. In fact, the 5th manual IS still there, but the plans are to remove it and just to use the couplers to play the Bombard division. They never use the 5th manual on its own, so it will allow us to bring the music desk down to a better position.

 

We too hope to make an improvement to the Bombard reeds!

 

John Pike Mander

 

 

 

I am shocked to hear this ! Why remove the fifth manual just to facilitate a better position for the music desk ? Westminster abbey manage perfectly well. In any case it would no longer make it a five manuel instrument anymore. This is silly. I implore you to reinstate it and to talk with the advisors again who have come up with this crackpot idea. I feel that strong about this matter that I might even protest to my local MP

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I am shocked to hear this ! Why remove the fifth manual just to facilitate a better position for the music desk ? Westminster abbey manage perfectly well.  In any case it would no longer make it a  five manuel instrument anymore.  This is silly. I  implore you to reinstate it and  to talk with the advisors again who have come up with this crackpot idea.  I feel that strong about this matter that I might even protest to my local MP

 

Hi

 

The Birmingham organ was a four manual until the last rebuild.

 

Every Blessing

 

Tony

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Guest Roffensis
I am shocked to hear this ! Why remove the fifth manual just to facilitate a better position for the music desk ? Westminster abbey manage perfectly well.  In any case it would no longer make it a   five manuel instrument anymore.  This is silly. I  implore you to reinstate it and  to talk with the advisors again who have come up with this crackpot idea.  I feel that strong about this matter that I might even protest to my local MP

 

Personally I would burn those truly nasty old Bombarde reeds, they are not original, nor do they sound it or integrate in the least with the fine voicing of the organ generally. If there has to be a Bombarde at all, then I think there should be new reeds made, along Hill lines to enhance what is there. As to the Willis rebuild in 1933, can I add that it was not in the least sympathetic to the old Hill. If ever an organ was butchered it was this one, and it makes sorry reading to see what was done. The Manders rebuild since must be ranked one of our most enlightened ever. The way they "returned" the original as much as possible causes me to trust them implicitly, to know exactly what they are doing with it. In my book that includes the console, which was compromised in the restoration due to space and a fifth manual, when it was never was intended to be a five decker.

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