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St Matthew's, Auckland, Nz


Colin Harvey
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Oh dear, I've succumbed. Seeing the photos of the church of St Matthews, Auckland and the spec of the organ HW & Sons are building made me wonder what I would want if I were the church authorities there.

 

Please bear in mind this isn't an attack on the work Willises are doing - I fully support their project and I think the spec is very good. But it did get my imagination working...

 

The premise of the organ remains the same - a fairly traditional English Romantic organ of around 4 manuals and 50-60 stops, taking up the same space as the organ Willis are proposing. This is what I came up with.

 

Great Organ

(South side, facing west)

 

Double Open Diapason 16 (prospect pipes)

Open Diapason 8 (prospect pipes)

Claribel Flute 8

Gambe 8 (prospect)

Principal 4

Harmonic Flute 4

Twelfth 2 2/3

Fifteenth 2

Mixture IV (1 1/3)

Trumpet 8

Clarion 4

Cornet V (from Tenor C)

 

Solo to Great

Swell to Great

Choir to Great

 

Swell Organ

(South side, facing north, enclosed)

 

Bourdon 16

Open Diapason 8

Stopped Diapason 8

Echo Gambe 8

Voix Celestes 8

Principal 4

Stopped Flute 4

Flautina 2

Mixture V-VI (2', with tierce)

Contra Fagotto 16

Cornopean 8

Oboe 8

Clarion 4

 

Tremulant

Octave

Sub Octave

Unison off

Solo to Swell

 

Choir Organ

(North Side, Facing West)

 

Open Diapason 8 (prospect pipes)

Stopped Diapason 8

Dulciana 8

Quintadena 8 (later addition to post - sorry... quintadenas are much mis-represented)

Principal 4

Flute 4

Nazard 2 2/3

Block Flute 2

Tierce 1 3/5

Larigot 1 1/3

Mixture V (2')

Dulciaan 16 (16' Clarinet/Cremona)

Trumpet 8

 

Tremulant

Solo to Choir

Swell to Choir

Great to Choir

Great reeds on Choir

 

 

Solo Organ

(North Side, facing South, Enclosed)

 

Harmonic Flute 8

Concert Flute 4

Viole di Gambe 8

Viole Celestes 8

Clarinet 8

Orchestral Oboe 8

Tuba 8

 

Tremulant

Octave

Sub Octave

Unison Off

Great Reeds on Solo

 

Pedal Organ

(Both sides, giving pipes for north cases where possible)

 

Contra Violone 32 (ext - bottom notes if horizontal made of wood)

Open Diapason 16 (metal, prospect)

Violone 16 (prospect)

Bourdon 16

Principal 8 (prospect)

Bass Flute 8

Fifteenth 4

Mixture VI (2 2/3)

Contra Trombone 32

Trombone 16

Bassoon 16 (full length)

Trumpet 8

 

Solo to Pedal

Swell to Pedal

Great to Pedal

Choir to Pedal

 

E-P action. Detatched Console.

 

Basically, my thoughts are:

  • The Great and Choir face west into the transepts towards the nave. Both have big principal choruses to lead the congregation. They can be used in dialogue - imagine the Dorian Toccata on this organ... They also have contrasting flutes and strings for quieter combinations.
  • Great and Swell on the south side are reflected by choir and solo on the north side for antiphonal work
  • Choir and Solo speak into the chancel for a more diffuse sound to the Great and Choir as heard from the nave.
  • The Tuba would speak west from the north side, maybe en chamade internally.
  • There would be matching cases on the North and South side, both on the fronts facing west and the frontages facing into the chancel.

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Nice ideas Colin!

 

Unfortunately - and this is a big one! - there isn't a triforium on the North Side! All of the job HAS to go into the triforium position all on one side and, as JA (NZ-Organist) commented in a post in a different thread, the chamber isn't huge: this also means that the Solo soundboard is really only able to take 5 stops (this will be directly behind the tall case which will be placed in the tall, narrow lancet opening into the Choir/Chancel.

 

We've tried to get most of what you 'favour' into the spec - strings in two divisions etc..

 

I take your point about a Clarion in the Swell, but there is an octave coupler there, whereas there isn't on the Great - that was my logic, however flawed!

 

The Pedal mutations are something that will appear in all new Willis jobs (large enough) in the future. Entirely my own bias I'm afraid, but then I am in a position to do it, so why not :)

 

The whole instrument will be entirely erected in the Works before it goes out and we intend to invite whomever would like to see/play it - likewise with Florence. More details at a later date.

 

DW

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Argh! Yes, I see the problem...

 

Anyway, the spec you've got looks good - I could very happily live with it. I wondered why the second celestes and other "solo-y" voices were on the choir - now I see why you've done it that way. It looks like a good project - hope you get to enjoy the sunshine and NZ life a bit when you're down there (although most organbuilders on site tend to work 7 days a week, 12-14 hours a day...)

 

And why not with the pedal mutations? I've been known to "fake" them on organs that don't have them, which is always good for a private laugh on an unsuspecting congregation...

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I think it might be interesting to compare, at this point, and about

mutation ranks, with the organ E-F Walcker built in Mulhouse (F) in 1864.

This organ was a favorite of Dr Schweitzer:

 

I MANUAL

 

Principal 16'

Flauto major 16'

Montre 8'

Bourdon 8'

Viola di gamba 8'

Hohlflöte 8'

Gemshorn 8'

Quintatön 8'

Nasard 5 1/3'

Prestant 4'

Rohrflöte 4'

Flûte d'amour 4'

Terz 3 1/5'

Nasard 2 2/3'

Doublette 2'

Forniture(sic) 6r: 4(stopped), 2 2/3'(nasard),2', 1 3/5'(Spitzflöte), 1 1/3',1'

Scharff 3r: 1', 4/5', 1/2'

Cornett 5r (from g): 2', 1', 2/3', 1/2', 2/5'

Fagott 16'

Trompete 8'

Clairon 4'

 

II MANUAL

 

Bourdon 16'

Montre 8'

Bourdon 8'

Salicional 8'

Bifara 8'+4' (stopped 8', open 4')

Nasard 5 1/3'

Prestant 4'

Rohrflöte 4'

Spitzflöte 4'

Sifflöte 2'

Forniture(sic)5r: 2 2/3', 2', 1 3/5', 1', 1'

Trompete 8' (milder than the other on I)

Fagott & Oboe 8' (free reeds)

Vox humana 8'

Corno 4' (never placed, replaced by Bassethorn 8')

 

III MANUAL (enclosed)

 

Principalflöte 8'

Bourdon 8'

Concertflöte 8' (with two mouths)

Aeoline 8'

Fugara 4'

Traversflöte 4'

Dolce 4'

Nasard 2 2/3'

Flageolett 2'

Bassethorn or Clarinett 8'(in the end: Trompette harmonique 8')

Physharmonika 8'

 

PEDAL

 

Grand Bourdon 32' (first octave: borrowing Quinte 10 2/3' and Tierce 6 2/5'. The Tierce is dropped on H, the Quinte on fs, then Bourdon 32')

Principalbass 16'

Subbass 16'

Violonbass 16'

Quintbass 10 2/3'

Octavbass 8'

Hohlflötenbass 8'

Violoncell 8'

Bourdon 8'

Terzbass 6 2/5'

Octavbass 4'

Flöte 2'

Bombardon 16' (Zinc!)

Trompete 8'

Clairon 4'

 

II/I, III/II, I/P, II/P, III/P

Expression III

Expression Physharmonika

4 non adjustable combinations

Crescendo

 

This exceptionnal design, which could serve as a model should it be wanted

to build a german romantic organ today, has exactly the same number of tierce

ranks than the Isnard organ of St-Maximin du Var -save that here they go from

32' up to 2'...-

And we see the design, roles, and general conception of the tonal structure

of this instrument's "structural stops", i.e. the choruses and Mixtures/ Mutations,

is not that far from Willis -past and present-.

 

Pierre

 

P.S. As for New Zealand, don't forget to taste their wines!!!

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Nice ideas Colin!

 

Unfortunately - and this is a big one! - there isn't a triforium on the North Side! All of the job HAS to go into the triforium position all on one side and, as JA (NZ-Organist) commented in a post in a different thread, the chamber isn't huge: this also means that the Solo soundboard is really only able to take 5 stops (this will be directly behind the tall case which will be placed in the tall, narrow lancet opening into the Choir/Chancel.

 

We've tried to get most of what you 'favour' into the spec - strings in two divisions etc..

 

I take your point about a Clarion in the Swell, but there is an octave coupler there, whereas there isn't on the Great - that was my logic, however flawed!

 

The Pedal mutations are something that will appear in all new Willis jobs (large enough) in the future. Entirely my own bias I'm afraid, but then I am in a position to do it, so why not :)

 

The whole instrument will be entirely erected in the Works before it goes out and we intend to invite whomever would like to see/play it - likewise with Florence. More details at a later date.

 

DW

 

I always thought that there would be enough space for one division on the north side of the chancel triforium, if you move all the pipes that are currently there.

 

In some of the schemes I have come up with for that building, I had always thought of placing the Solo, only 8-4-V-8-4, over in that space. Also I had the idea of placing a division in the West End gallery to help with congregational singing.

 

However, I agree with Colin about the specification you have come up with.

 

Do you have an idea of when the organ might be installed, David?

 

Josh A

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