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Guest Barry Oakley
Having just returned from a recital at Liverpool, I was told by someone in "the know" that Ian T has resigned and his new position will be an honorary one. Chapter are hoping to appoint successor/s to start in January. From the sound of it, Liverpool hasn't been a very happy place over the last couple of years - sounds like typical Anglican politics.

 

Yes, as you say, Liverpool has not been a happy place over the last couple of years and as I mentioned in a previous posting, it looks as though a "Lincoln" has happened there. And it's been rather like musical chairs at the Met. Cathedral, too, over recent years.

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I wonder whether the style "organist titulaire" means that IT's position will henceforth be similar to Colin Walsh's at Lincoln (which is what, exactly?)

 

Answer by PM - for reasons which will become clear.

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Having just returned from a recital at Liverpool, I was told by someone in "the know" that Ian T has resigned and his new position will be an honorary one. Chapter are hoping to appoint successor/s to start in January. From the sound of it, Liverpool hasn't been a very happy place over the last couple of years - sounds like typical Anglican politics.

 

Having just spoken to a colleague who was with Prof. T yesterday, he was extremely surprised - apparently Ian is also unaware that he has resigned.... He has been threatening to do so for a while - but has not actually done so. The honorary post sounds unlikely.

 

My colleague is now contacting him again, but as of yesterday, Ian was still Organist of Liverpool Cathedral.

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Guest Cynic

I am given to understand that at the moment there is no Dean of Liverpool Cathedral; this is a period of interregnum.

 

First, this sounds like an incredibly stupid as well as inappropriate time for anyone in authority to devise any sort of re-drawing of job specifications.

Secondly, any mucking up of the present musical arrangements would seem to put in jeopardy one of the few genuine claims that Liverpool has to being a 'City of Culture'!

 

 

 

Cynic.

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I am given to understand that at the moment there is no Dean of Liverpool Cathedral; this is a period of interregnum.

 

First, this sounds like an incredibly stupid as well as inappropriate time for anyone in authority to devise any sort of re-drawing of job specifications.

Secondly, any mucking up of the present musical arrangements would seem to put in jeopardy one of the few genuine claims that Liverpool has to being a 'City of Culture'!

Cynic.

 

 

 

 

Given that the new Dean of Liverpool doesn't start until December, it seems hasty to attempt to have a new D of M in place by January. One would like to think that the new Dean would like to have a hand in what is, after all, a key appointment. The original thread in this discussion was a quote posted by a Liverpool Cathedral Lay Clerk on the Lay Clerk's discussion group, from a letter sent to people within the cathedral. Given that most prominent cathedral musicians would need to give a term's notice from 1st September if they were to start a new job on 1st January, it seems to me that is rather hasty to appoint someone to start on January 1st! Perhaps the member of staff at Liverpool who was yesterday putting it about that "chapter want the new people to start in January" got it wrong. Publicity materials on display at Liverpool yesterday show both Ian T and Ian W doing recitals/concerts at the cathedral in 2008.

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Guest Barry Oakley
Given that the new Dean of Liverpool doesn't start until December, it seems hasty to attempt to have a new D of M in place by January. One would like to think that the new Dean would like to have a hand in what is, after all, a key appointment. The original thread in this discussion was a quote posted by a Liverpool Cathedral Lay Clerk on the Lay Clerk's discussion group, from a letter sent to people within the cathedral. Given that most prominent cathedral musicians would need to give a term's notice from 1st September if they were to start a new job on 1st January, it seems to me that is rather hasty to appoint someone to start on January 1st! Perhaps the member of staff at Liverpool who was yesterday putting it about that "chapter want the new people to start in January" got it wrong. Publicity materials on display at Liverpool yesterday show both Ian T and Ian W doing recitals/concerts at the cathedral in 2008.

 

Perhaps this is a lesson in not listening to gossip.

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Gentlemen,

 

There is nothing like going directly to the source on a matter such as this, so I wrote to Ian to ask him if he had seen the thread. Indeed he has, and here is his response….

 

(to which my response is "Thanks be to God!!!" ... DQB)

 

====

 

Dear Quentin

 

The statement to staff reads thus:

 

"After twenty-five distinguished years service as Organist & Master of the Choristers of Liverpool Cathedral; the Cathedral Chapter and The Dean Elect have agreed to a request from Professor Ian Tracey to take up an appointment as Organist Titulaire, in order to devote more time to concerts, recitals, recording, lecturing, teaching and writing.

 

Applications are invited for the post of ‘Director of Music’ commencing January 2008. Interviews are expected to be held in October, and the Chapter are seeking to appoint a choral specialist. The successful candidate will have responsibility for recruitment and direction of the several vocal ensembles (Boys, Girls, Lay Clerks, Cathedral Singers & Orchestra) at the seven choral services each week, at special services and concerts, and will assume overall responsibility for direction of the Cathedral’s music programme. The Organist Titulaire will retain complementary responsibility for all matters relating to the cathedral’s organs and organ recitals. It is not a pre-requisite for applicants to have formal training as cathedral organists.

 

An appropriate salary and accommodation will be provided, together with secretarial back-up from the Cathedral Music Department Manager.

 

It is hoped that the appointment will be confirmed in October, for commencement in early 2008. All applications and requests for further information should be addressed, before the closing date of 30th September, to:- Canon Anthony Hawley, Acting Dean, Liverpool Cathedral, Liverpool L1 7AZ."

 

 

.... and I approved every word of it.

 

========

 

Ian goes on to say ….

 

It is all absolutely voluntary and amicable and it was I who asked the Chapter – I’ve been Choirmaster for 25 years and that is long enough for any choir to have the same hand on the wheel. We all need a change. I’ve picked it up and run with it, and it really is time for someone young new and exciting to do the same (as I was after my predecessor's 37 years). The new Dean (a lovely man) has been involved since the beginning of this notion and is totally approving of it all as are the entire Chapter - they would rather I did what I am doing than go completely, as would I - I did offer them that alternative if they didn’t wish to proceed and they knocked it back immediately.

 

So I AM VERY MUCH STAYING, as para 1 states - the above is what was sent to the Lay Clerks, so quite where the notion that I am going came from, I'm not sure. I have NO problems with the clergy at all - who are lovely and it has been my high privilege to serve them, especially the current Acting Dean. I sometimes get over there at 4.00pm after a day of Admin and wonder whether I have anything left to give in what should be my proper role...not a good thing! Many cathedral organists find this to be the case!

 

I am migrating up to the loft to do the thing God intended me to do, without all the hassle (and the thing I was appointed to do in 1980 actually and Noel before me in 1955). I’ve done my stint to put the choir on the map and the music on a proper footing. I’ll hopefully do more freelance work outside as I will not be tied six days per week and 38 weeks per year. I am still playing at big services here, and all the recitals recordings concerts et all.

 

So far as Ian Wells is concerned, he has done 25 years as Assistant now in his 26th (a sterling stint perhaps a record). When I finally agreed my new status with Chapter and went public, he thought for a few days and did the same.... no subterfuge, no enmity, no scandal, no nothing (contrary to all the stories from those people who just play on the net all the time gossiping away and inventing things).

 

I’m very excited about it as there is an organ appeal to launch and much to do in 2008, and for me, lots of playing in the Cathedral, which has been my main employment in one capacity or another for the past 37 years and my spiritual home before that. Ian Wells will stay as an Honorary Deputy and still be heard - so in fact, we will both be fulfilling our obligations as on the music schemes and various advertising - just with new titles!

 

Many thanks for your support.

 

Aye,

 

IAN

 

Professor Dr. Ian Tracey,

Professor, Fellow & Organist, Liverpool John Moores University,

Chorusmaster, The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Society,

Organist & Master of the Choristers, Liverpool Cathedral,

Organ Consultant, The Diocese of Liverpool,

Organist, The City of Liverpool.

 

Mornington House,

Mornington Terrace,

Upper Duke Street,

Liverpool L1 9DY.

Tel/fax: 0151-708-8471

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Applications are invited for the post of ‘Director of Music’ commencing January 2008. Interviews are expected to be held in October, and the Chapter are seeking to appoint a choral specialist.

 

It is hoped that the appointment will be confirmed in October, for commencement in early 2008. All applications and requests for further information should be addressed, before the closing date of 30th September, to:- Canon Anthony Hawley, Acting Dean, Liverpool Cathedral, Liverpool L1 7AZ."

 

 

 

 

It is is certainly good news that I.T. is still going to be on the pay-role - but, I am still not convinced that interviewing in October for a January start date is going to produce the best applicants in the field for the Director of Music post. I personally, feel that Liverpool needs a candidate of the highest possible caliber to take the choral side of things a stage further. Perhaps someone might negotiate with I.T. and I.W. to keep things going for another term, if a suitable candidate is found who perhaps for notice/contractual reasons with their present employer may not be able to take up the post until, say, Easter? Perhaps the wording "start date January 2008 or as soon as possible thereafter" might be more appropriate?

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Yes, as you say, Liverpool has not been a happy place over the last couple of years and as I mentioned in a previous posting, it looks as though a "Lincoln" has happened there. And it's been rather like musical chairs at the Met. Cathedral, too, over recent years.

 

 

=============================

 

 

I'm afraid you will have to excuse my complete and total ignorance, but I was talking recently to one of the previous (recent) incumbents at the Metropolitan Cathedral, when he came to my church to do a recording for a new CD. The problem is, I cannot recall his name, because I was rushing away to watch the Formula One Grand Prix, and music was the last thing I wanted to talk about at the time. Anyway, he told me that he was perfectly happy at Liverpool Met, but when the opportunity arose to become (I think) the Musical Director of the Welsh International Eisteddfod, he packed his bags and went to Wales.

 

I don't think they are suffering at all at the Met Pot, but along the way "at the end of Hope Street" things are obviously taking a turn for the worse.

 

As someone suggests, this is typical Anglican Politics by the sounds of it.....a church tearing itself apart with irrelevances and lost causes, if ever there was one.

 

Meanwhile, a number of catholic diocese are re-discovering traditional church-music, and investing large sums of money into it.

 

I expect the Anglican Cathedral will become a theme park in time, like the rest of Liverpool.

 

MM

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Guest Barry Oakley
Gentlemen,

 

There is nothing like going directly to the source on a matter such as this, so I wrote to Ian to ask him if he had seen the thread. Indeed he has, and here is his response….

 

(to which my response is "Thanks be to God!!!" ... DQB)

 

====

 

Dear Quentin

 

The statement to staff reads thus:

 

"After twenty-five distinguished years service as Organist & Master of the Choristers of Liverpool Cathedral; the Cathedral Chapter and The Dean Elect have agreed to a request from Professor Ian Tracey to take up an appointment as Organist Titulaire, in order to devote more time to concerts, recitals, recording, lecturing, teaching and writing.

 

Applications are invited for the post of ‘Director of Music’ commencing January 2008. Interviews are expected to be held in October, and the Chapter are seeking to appoint a choral specialist. The successful candidate will have responsibility for recruitment and direction of the several vocal ensembles (Boys, Girls, Lay Clerks, Cathedral Singers & Orchestra) at the seven choral services each week, at special services and concerts, and will assume overall responsibility for direction of the Cathedral’s music programme. The Organist Titulaire will retain complementary responsibility for all matters relating to the cathedral’s organs and organ recitals. It is not a pre-requisite for applicants to have formal training as cathedral organists.

 

An appropriate salary and accommodation will be provided, together with secretarial back-up from the Cathedral Music Department Manager.

 

It is hoped that the appointment will be confirmed in October, for commencement in early 2008. All applications and requests for further information should be addressed, before the closing date of 30th September, to:- Canon Anthony Hawley, Acting Dean, Liverpool Cathedral, Liverpool L1 7AZ."

.... and I approved every word of it.

 

========

 

Ian goes on to say ….

 

It is all absolutely voluntary and amicable and it was I who asked the Chapter – I’ve been Choirmaster for 25 years and that is long enough for any choir to have the same hand on the wheel. We all need a change. I’ve picked it up and run with it, and it really is time for someone young new and exciting to do the same (as I was after my predecessor's 37 years). The new Dean (a lovely man) has been involved since the beginning of this notion and is totally approving of it all as are the entire Chapter - they would rather I did what I am doing than go completely, as would I - I did offer them that alternative if they didn’t wish to proceed and they knocked it back immediately.

 

So I AM VERY MUCH STAYING, as para 1 states - the above is what was sent to the Lay Clerks, so quite where the notion that I am going came from, I'm not sure. I have NO problems with the clergy at all - who are lovely and it has been my high privilege to serve them, especially the current Acting Dean. I sometimes get over there at 4.00pm after a day of Admin and wonder whether I have anything left to give in what should be my proper role...not a good thing! Many cathedral organists find this to be the case!

 

I am migrating up to the loft to do the thing God intended me to do, without all the hassle (and the thing I was appointed to do in 1980 actually and Noel before me in 1955). I’ve done my stint to put the choir on the map and the music on a proper footing. I’ll hopefully do more freelance work outside as I will not be tied six days per week and 38 weeks per year. I am still playing at big services here, and all the recitals recordings concerts et all.

 

So far as Ian Wells is concerned, he has done 25 years as Assistant now in his 26th (a sterling stint perhaps a record). When I finally agreed my new status with Chapter and went public, he thought for a few days and did the same.... no subterfuge, no enmity, no scandal, no nothing (contrary to all the stories from those people who just play on the net all the time gossiping away and inventing things).

 

I’m very excited about it as there is an organ appeal to launch and much to do in 2008, and for me, lots of playing in the Cathedral, which has been my main employment in one capacity or another for the past 37 years and my spiritual home before that. Ian Wells will stay as an Honorary Deputy and still be heard - so in fact, we will both be fulfilling our obligations as on the music schemes and various advertising - just with new titles!

 

Many thanks for your support.

 

Aye,

 

IAN

 

Professor Dr. Ian Tracey,

Professor, Fellow & Organist, Liverpool John Moores University,

Chorusmaster, The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Society,

Organist & Master of the Choristers, Liverpool Cathedral,

Organ Consultant, The Diocese of Liverpool,

Organist, The City of Liverpool.

 

Mornington House,

Mornington Terrace,

Upper Duke Street,

Liverpool L1 9DY.

Tel/fax: 0151-708-8471

 

What an excellent and kindly statement, so typical of maestro Ian Tracey.

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What an excellent and kindly statement, so typical of maestro Ian Tracey.

 

 

==========================

 

 

Oh dear!

 

I screwed up! :rolleyes:

 

Happy little campers all, or so it would seem. I'm actually very relieved, because Ian is such a nice chap and deserves good treatment. It seems that the Dean is too.

 

Now if they could just get the Bishop to resign................. :P (I have my reasons!!!!!)

 

 

As for Ian Wells tenure, I think he is a "new starter" compared to Jonathan Bielby at Wakefield. A whole style of architecture has come and gone in the time he's been there.

 

MM

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Guest Psalm 78 v.67
What an excellent and kindly statement, so typical of maestro Ian Tracey.

 

Indeed. I have only met Ian once, back in the mid '80's. I was looking round the cathedral and he happened to be coming down one of the aisles, and stopped and welcomed me to the cathedral and said who he was; he did not have time to show me the organ himself, but he went off and found Ian Wells who again was extremely kind and gave up some free time to give me a personal demonstration in the loft.

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=============================

I'm afraid you will have to excuse my complete and total ignorance, but I was talking recently to one of the previous (recent) incumbents at the Metropolitan Cathedral, when he came to my church to do a recording for a new CD.

 

======================

 

 

Mervyn Cousins.....that was the chap, I just remembered!

 

B)

 

MM

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I see the advert for this post in The Church Times today. Anyone here fancy applying? :P

 

 

========================

 

 

Trust me, I would do, but that 5th manual is just a bit beyond my reach.

 

:o

 

MM

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Guest Cynic
========================

Trust me, I would do, but that 5th manual is just a bit beyond my reach.

 

:P

 

MM

 

And ... as/when you do manage to reach it ...an enormous range of possibilities is open to you!!

 

BTW I am particularly amused by the provision of three pistons to control the single stop of the Corona Divison.

I suppose they would go

1. Trompette militaire

2. TM plus octave

3. TM plus octave and sub

 

The Lord preserve us!!

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I have just received my copy of the DVD of The Grand Organ of Liverpool Cathedral from the Priory Records, featuring Ian at the console and it is a WOW!!!

 

At £19.99 it comes together with a CD of the organ and a pretty good booklet. It's really superb and the playing, together with various other additional video tracks makes enthralling viewing.

 

If you don't have a copy, it's well worth ordering one from the Priory website. :lol:

 

Q

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I have just received my copy of the DVD of The Grand Organ of Liverpool Cathedral from the Priory Records, featuring Ian at the console and it is a WOW!!!

 

At £19.99 it comes together with a CD of the organ and a pretty good booklet. It's really superb and the playing, together with various other additional video tracks makes enthralling viewing.

 

If you don't have a copy, it's well worth ordering one from the Priory website. :lol:

 

Q

 

I envy you. My wife sent for one for my birthday (3rd August) and I am still waiting for it.

 

When she telephoned them, Priory said something about having to send stock back to the suppliers (?) because of faulty packaging.

 

John

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I envy you. My wife sent for one for my birthday (3rd August) and I am still waiting for it.

 

When she telephoned them, Priory said something about having to send stock back to the suppliers (?) because of faulty packaging.

 

John

There is an error here, because the DVD was only released this week and my copy was among the first dispatched. The website does say that the DVD was not due for release until September, so it could well be that your copy is held up in the post. There was a mistake on the artwork which is shown on the site which refers to the "Father" Willis organ of Liverpool Cathedral, as opposed to the Willis III - but the actual title of the disk is "The Grand Organ of Liverpool Cathedral". Hopefully, in the morning, your postman will deliver you a delightful belated birthday prezzie from your wife!

 

Q

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There is an error here, because the DVD was only released this week and my copy was among the first dispatched. The website does say that the DVD was not due for release until September, so it could well be that your copy is held up in the post. There was a mistake on the artwork which is shown on the site which refers to the "Father" Willis organ of Liverpool Cathedral, as opposed to the Willis III - but the actual title of the disk is "The Grand Organ of Liverpool Cathedral". Hopefully, in the morning, your postman will deliver you a delightful belated birthday prezzie from your wife!

 

Q

 

Or perhaps an early Xmas present?!

 

Yes, I had heard about the Father Willis / Willis III misunderstanding, and am glad they sorted that out. It would have niggled me!

 

John

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Also looking forward to the arrival of the DVD!

 

I have fond memories of a cassette tape released several years ago with the Prof doing a guided tour of the organ - even better on DVD no doubt!

 

Just happened to see the info about the Liverpool post this week - interesting. However - the info pack states that the successful candidate must be an Anglican or "at least a member of a church in communion with it"............hmmm!!! This rules out at least fou8r prominent cathedral musicians who are RC's and certainly doesn't do much for the ecumenical relations at the other end of Hope Street either!

 

NS

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Hopefully, in the morning, your postman will deliver you a delightful belated birthday prezzie from your wife!

 

Q

 

Yes, he did! I am watching it now - the additional material re. the organ, programme, etc, at the moment. Is he really leaning on the Choir manual?!

 

John

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And ... as/when you do manage to reach it ...an enormous range of possibilities is open to you!!

 

BTW I am particularly amused by the provision of three pistons to control the single stop of the Corona Divison.

I suppose they would go

1. Trompette militaire

2. TM plus octave

3. TM plus octave and sub

 

The Lord preserve us!!

 

 

Perhaps they will also be used to control this ... (see 2007 entry at the top of the page and spec below). Anyone have any further info?

http://www.die-orgelseite.de/disp/GB_Liver...nCathedral1.htm

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