Jump to content
Mander Organ Builders Forum

Auckland Town Hall Organ In New Zealand


Recommended Posts

How is doing the work on this organ?

 

Johannes Klais in Germany are doing the work, and as far as I know the work is scheduled to begin near the end of the year.

I played this organ a couple of years ago and I found it to be an all right organ, but does not have enough power to what it would have had in its Norman & Beard incarnation. I think it was a terrible mistake for Croft to rebuild it in the 70s. surprising that only 11 of the N&B ranks are still speaking, including the two 32' flue ranks. If anyone wants the current specification or N&B one, let me know.

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
It is great news that the Auckland Town Hall Organ is being rebuilt. It truly is a terrible instrument. The final choice for builders was between Klais, Harrison, and Manders

 

I agree about it being a terrible instrument, there was so much colour in the old N&B instrument which was lost, a lot of solo stops as well like the Tubas.

Also the 32' wooden Posaune was taken out and replaced which was pretty stupid. Another thing I don't get is why they got rid of the 4rk Mixture on the Great and replaced it with a 3rk.

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

You may be interested to know that the dismantling of the Auckland town hall organ is commencing on the 7th January 2008.

This is being done by Klais in co-operation with the South Island Organ Company.

Also of interest is that a lot of the original pipes which have not been installed in other organs around the country have been located and are being looked at for possible use in the new organ.

Installation of the organ is scheduled for sometime in 2009. I will try to keep you up-to-date with pics etc when possible.

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...
Johannes Klais in Germany are doing the work, and as far as I know the work is scheduled to begin near the end of the year.

I played this organ a couple of years ago and I found it to be an all right organ, but does not have enough power to what it would have had in its Norman & Beard incarnation. I think it was a terrible mistake for Croft to rebuild it in the 70s. surprising that only 11 of the N&B ranks are still speaking, including the two 32' flue ranks. If anyone wants the current specification or N&B one, let me know.

 

JA

 

It will be very interesting to understand the new specification. I am stuggling at the moment with the retoric that is going around about how terrible the 1970 rebuilt organ. Whilst I wouldnt consider myself a Master Organ builder, I can see a lot of merit in the existing instrument. I'd prefer to be recording using the current instrument over a lot of other more bombastic instruments I played. The 1970's instrument was the conclusion of six of the cities best organists and the team from Croft's design efforts. Every component was carefully chosen in alignment with the requirements of the day. Surely what has changed in 35years is our taste for sound vs the capability of the organ. Today, it seems to be about POWER, GRUNT and DOMINANCE. What do these mean? It seems they mean deafening volume, huge bass, psysmic pulsation and nothing subtle. The difference surely between before 1970 and after is the number of stops needing to be pulled. Granted on the post 1970's organ you have to pull a lot! :huh:

 

Dont get me wrong, Im totally behind the project. Every organ needs to be rebuilt every 30-40years. The tonal body of the instrument always changes in some way and new technology removes a few flaws and adds a few new features....some good and some bad. I am truely excited about the new instrument. My point is that we must be realistic about what this wonderful asset is going to be.

 

For those who truely remember the old organ of pre-1970, you will know that the organ came with a health warning about the reeds. Many a little old lady was blown out of her seat by an in-experienced organist who under-estimated the "power" of the reeds. Yes they would loosen the plaster in the roof. Yes they would shake the building. Yes you had to be very careful. We did loose something when it was changed. We also gained a great instrument and I still believe that Croft's did a great job. However, time has been very harsh on the requirements set in 1970. It will be interesting to see how the organ has aged in 35years. Will they find a perfectly good instrument that just became "not trendy" and was thrown away unnecessarily? Well such is the price of progress.

 

I hope that in 35years we arent pulling out another perfectly good instrument. What would have been nice is that for $3.5m we transfered the 1970's organ into another suitable venue and rebuilt the Grand HAll into the monster that everyone desires. Dreams are Free....sadly reality costs money!

Link to post
Share on other sites
It will be very interesting to understand the new specification. I am stuggling at the moment with the retoric that is going around about how terrible the 1970 rebuilt organ. Whilst I wouldnt consider myself a Master Organ builder, I can see a lot of merit in the existing instrument. I'd prefer to be recording using the current instrument over a lot of other more bombastic instruments I played. The 1970's instrument was the conclusion of six of the cities best organists and the team from Croft's design efforts. Every component was carefully chosen in alignment with the requirements of the day. Surely what has changed in 35years is our taste for sound vs the capability of the organ. Today, it seems to be about POWER, GRUNT and DOMINANCE. What do these mean? It seems they mean deafening volume, huge bass, psysmic pulsation and nothing subtle. The difference surely between before 1970 and after is the number of stops needing to be pulled. Granted on the post 1970's organ you have to pull a lot! :huh:

 

Dont get me wrong, Im totally behind the project. Every organ needs to be rebuilt every 30-40years. The tonal body of the instrument always changes in some way and new technology removes a few flaws and adds a few new features....some good and some bad. I am truely excited about the new instrument. My point is that we must be realistic about what this wonderful asset is going to be.

 

For those who truely remember the old organ of pre-1970, you will know that the organ came with a health warning about the reeds. Many a little old lady was blown out of her seat by an in-experienced organist who under-estimated the "power" of the reeds. Yes they would loosen the plaster in the roof. Yes they would shake the building. Yes you had to be very careful. We did loose something when it was changed. We also gained a great instrument and I still believe that Croft's did a great job. However, time has been very harsh on the requirements set in 1970. It will be interesting to see how the organ has aged in 35years. Will they find a perfectly good instrument that just became "not trendy" and was thrown away unnecessarily? Well such is the price of progress.

 

I hope that in 35years we arent pulling out another perfectly good instrument. What would have been nice is that for $3.5m we transfered the 1970's organ into another suitable venue and rebuilt the Grand HAll into the monster that everyone desires. Dreams are Free....sadly reality costs money!

 

I agree with most of your points here.

The only problem is about the power of the current instrument, and when used with an orchestra it cannot be heard very well.

I have heard some very good concerts on this organ, especially by Colin Walsh when he was in Auckland in 2006.

 

However, an update of what is going on at the hall:

Most pipework is out of the organ, excepting large Open Wood/Metal and 32' pipes.

Console was moved down from the front of the organ tonight using a hoist system, and was completed in about 5 mins.

A lot of the trunking/winding system is out of the organ, and underactions of the organ are coming out tomorrow.

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
I agree with most of your points here.

The only problem is about the power of the current instrument, and when used with an orchestra it cannot be heard very well.

I have heard some very good concerts on this organ, especially by Colin Walsh when he was in Auckland in 2006.

 

However, an update of what is going on at the hall:

Most pipework is out of the organ, excepting large Open Wood/Metal and 32' pipes.

Console was moved down from the front of the organ tonight using a hoist system, and was completed in about 5 mins.

A lot of the trunking/winding system is out of the organ, and underactions of the organ are coming out tomorrow.

 

JA

 

 

Awesome. Many thanks. I havent seen a specification for the new organ...... is there one available? If so, where?? Sounds like you are having fun.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Awesome. Many thanks. I havent seen a specification for the new organ...... is there one available? If so, where?? Sounds like you are having fun.

 

No problem. As for a specification, Klais do have one but I have no idea where to get it from currently.

Yes we are having fun, but it is very hard work in those tight spaces, and also the fact that it gets very very hot up in the organ. Possibly about 10C hotter that down in the main hall.

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
No problem. As for a specification, Klais do have one but I have no idea where to get it from currently.

Yes we are having fun, but it is very hard work in those tight spaces, and also the fact that it gets very very hot up in the organ. Possibly about 10C hotter that down in the main hall.

 

JA

 

How much of the existing organ is going to remain? Blowers, reservoirs, etc?

Link to post
Share on other sites
How much of the existing organ is going to remain? Blowers, reservoirs, etc?

 

As far as I know, Klais are going to try and keep as much of the original organ as possible, but a lot of new pipework is going in.

The current blower is being dumped for three new blowers. The reason for this is because the current one is not powerful enough, not even enough for the 1970s organ and reservoirs are not inflating properly.

Original reservoirs are being kept I think...

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
As far as I know, Klais are going to try and keep as much of the original organ as possible, but a lot of new pipework is going in.

The current blower is being dumped for three new blowers. The reason for this is because the current one is not powerful enough, not even enough for the 1970s organ and reservoirs are not inflating properly.

Original reservoirs are being kept I think...

 

JA

 

Do you know what pipework is not going to be used and if it is going to be available for purchase? Im after a few ranks at the moment.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Do you know what pipework is not going to be used and if it is going to be available for purchase? Im after a few ranks at the moment.

 

I don't think that any of the pipework is going to be for sale at the moment, as Klais is taking most of the pipes back to Bonn.

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...

"Philipp Klais explained the company had been particularly keen to secure the Auckland project because it envisaged a style of instrument closely matching Klais’ own evolving thinking on the future of the concert organ."

(Quote)

 

YESSSS!!! :(

 

Pierre

Link to post
Share on other sites
"Philipp Klais explained the company had been particularly keen to secure the Auckland project because it envisaged a style of instrument closely matching Klais’ own evolving thinking on the future of the concert organ."

(Quote)

 

YESSSS!!! :(

 

Pierre

I know. Perhaps the obvious to some of us is finally beginning to sink in. Question is, is it just fashion, or will it be here to stay? Are some consultants, and builders finally beginning to use their ears and brains? I really hope so.

 

AJS

Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course we do not know yet how long this interest for

the british organ will last.

But in the mean time it could produce quite interesting cross-over

styles.

As I said, this nearly happened once, just before the Orgelbewegung,

for example with Stahlhuth. Oscar Walcker could have followed, but

he was himself in so "visible" a position in so *peculiar* times that

he could not.

 

Pierre

Link to post
Share on other sites

The inclusion of the Maori Horn on the Solo organ is interesting. I have a memory of hearing one of these whilst at school, played in our chapel by some relative or other of a Maori boy who was with us for 12 months, and recall it having quite a loud and strident tone with a distinct "buzz".

 

Google produces this which seems to confirm that there would indeed be a buzz from the reed placed towards the bell end of the instrument. I like the part that tells how enemies were frightened by shouting curses through it. One can imagine it being used thus in the Concert Hall "Stop coughing in the stalls!...", especially if placed En Chamade !

 

This rank must present quite a challenge for the builder and voicer to replicate and I should be interested to learn how the process would be gone through. It is presumably a type of Regal?

 

P

Link to post
Share on other sites
The inclusion of the Maori Horn on the Solo organ is interesting. I have a memory of hearing one of these whilst at school, played in our chapel by some relative or other of a Maori boy who was with us for 12 months, and recall it having quite a loud and strident tone with a distinct "buzz".

 

Google produces this which seems to confirm that there would indeed be a buzz from the reed placed towards the bell end of the instrument. I like the part that tells how enemies were frightened by shouting curses through it. One can imagine it being used thus in the Concert Hall "Stop coughing in the stalls!...", especially if placed En Chamade !

 

This rank must present quite a challenge for the builder and voicer to replicate and I should be interested to learn how the process would be gone through. It is presumably a type of Regal?

 

P

 

Yes, both this and the Maori Flute made of glass will be interesting to hear. As far as I know all of the pipes from the Maori Trumpet (Pukaea) all have individual carvings near the top of the resonator. Unfortunately its not "en chamade".

 

JA

Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...