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Bryn Clinch

Somewhat unusual or bizarre?

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I would value any member`s opinion on an organ that I remember playing many years ago and before it was rebuilt in the 70s. What sound would emanate from this instrument ? The present spec. is as follows:

 

PEDAL

16` Trombone

16` Bourdon

8` Principal

8` Stopped Flute

4` Fifteenth

2` Flageolet

Mixture III

 

SWELL

16` Cremona

Sharp Mixture II III

Twenty Second I

Nineteenth 1 1/3

8` Chimney Flute

8` Salicional

4` Principal

2` Gemshorn

 

GREAT

8` Open Diapason

8` Stopped Diapason

8` Trumpet

4` Octave

2` Fifteenth

Full Mixture IV

Sesquialtera II

 

All as inscribed on the stops.

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I don't know about that one, but this is somewhat similar:

 

Great: Double Diapason 16A, Open Diapason 8, Chimney Flute 8A, Principal 4, Block Flute 2, Mixture 15.19.22,Trumpet 8B

Swell: Spitz Flute 8, Principal 4, Stopped Flute 4, Gemshorn 2, Larigot 1 1/3, Sharp Mixture 22.26.29, Krummhorn 16

Choir: Stopped Diapason 8, Open Flute 4, Fifteenth 2, Sesquialtera 12.17, Sifflet 1

Pedal Open Bass 16C, Sub Bass 16A, Principal 8C, Bass Flute 8A, Fifteenth 4C, Chimney Flute 2A, Mixture 19.22C, Bass Trumpet 16B, Trumpet 8B, Clarion 4B

 

Swell Tremulant

S/G, C/G

S/C

G/P, S/P, C/P

 

1968 rebuild by Cedric Arnold, Williamson & Hyatt of a Walker organ at St. Botolph's, Colchester. Tracker action (traditional style with wood trackers) to manuals except for the three stops taken from the pedal units.

 

Those who know A,W&H's organ at Walsingham will have an idea of what to expect, but this is one hell of an effective organ and can make a good job of the most unexpected parts of the repertoire.

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I would value any member`s opinion on an organ that I remember playing many years ago and before it was rebuilt in the 70s. What sound would emanate from this instrument ? ...

It looks like a fairly bog-standard neo-classical specification. You can't really tell what it sounds like from just a stoplist. It could be inspirational; it could be frightful (and, if it's an extension organ, almost certainly the latter). It's all down to the workmanship and artistry of whoever rebuilt it and the scope and quality of the material he had to work with.

 

At best the sound would be clear, crisp and bright, with a scintillating chorus, characterful flutes and all stops balancing and blending equally – an organ capable of making contrapuntal lines sound like music rather than turgid treacle. At worst it would scream unremittingly, with raucous reeds and nothing blending properly with anything else.

 

Either way, it is guaranteed not to appeal to those who only appreciate organs that sound full-toned and Romantic. (I'm not thinking of anyone in particular here.)

 

One thing I don't like about the specification is the lack of any 4 ft flute. I would happily trade the Swell Twenty-second for one (though space may be an issue). I would hope the Gemshorn is of the hybrid flute/principal type.

 

One very interesting organ in a similar vein that I played recently was this one that Maurice Eglinton built at Alphington, Exeter in 1988 (in what would have been the parish church of the infant Robert Stone – he of the Lord's Prayer and a rather exaggerated impression of his age). Although the organ is in some respects uneven (the mutations are all far too strident and the reeds raucous), the 8', 4' and 2' stops and the Mixtures are absolutely wonderful. They are all perfectly balanced and blended and the organ can, if desired, be treated as a large one-manual. For example, there is no Great Fifteenth because that stop is on the Swell. The Great Open and Principal with the Swell Fifteenth coupled all fit together like a glove, with a quality of voicing and regulation might well make Bill Drake look to his laurels. The Open Diapason sings with great harmonic development. I could play on it for hours without getting bored. The flutes fit together similarly. I've not tried it, but I suspect you could play through the Orgelbüchlein without ever repeating a registration. An organ that deserves to be better known than it seems to be.

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It looks like a fairly bog-standard neo-classical specification. You can't really tell what it sounds like from just a stoplist. It could be inspirational; it could be frightful (and, if it's an extension organ, almost certainly the latter). It's all down to the workmanship and artistry of whoever rebuilt it and the scope and quality of the material he had to work with.

 

At best the sound would be clear, crisp and bright, with a scintillating chorus, characterful flutes and all stops balancing and blending equally – an organ capable of making contrapuntal lines sound like music rather than turgid treacle. At worst it would scream unremittingly, with raucous reeds and nothing blending properly with anything else.

 

Either way, it is guaranteed not to appeal to those who only appreciate organs that sound full-toned and Romantic. (I'm not thinking of anyone in particular here.)

 

One thing I don't like about the specification is the lack of any 4 ft flute. I would happily trade the Swell Twenty-second for one (though space may be an issue). I would hope the Gemshorn is of the hybrid flute/principal type.

 

One very interesting organ in a similar vein that I played recently was this one that Maurice Eglinton built at Alphington, Exeter in 1988 (in what would have been the parish church of the infant Robert Stone – he of the Lord's Prayer and a rather exaggerated impression of his age). Although the organ is in some respects uneven (the mutations are all far too strident and the reeds raucous), the 8', 4' and 2' stops and the Mixtures are absolutely wonderful. They are all perfectly balanced and blended and the organ can, if desired, be treated as a large one-manual. For example, there is no Great Fifteenth because that stop is on the Swell. The Great Open and Principal with the Swell Fifteenth coupled all fit together like a glove, with a quality of voicing and regulation might well make Bill Drake look to his laurels. The Open Diapason sings with great harmonic development. I could play on it for hours without getting bored. The flutes fit together similarly. I've not tried it, but I suspect you could play through the Orgelbüchlein without ever repeating a registration. An organ that deserves to be better known than it seems to be.

Thanks for your reply, Vox Humana! I have yet to see or play this instrument but hope to very soon. My own, non-expert, opinion is broadly the same and I`ll now know what to expect as I believe there is some extension work.

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