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jackaubrey

Notre Dame - inaugural recital after restoration

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I do not think that it would look quite as good here.

Oh, sorry ! I wasn't suggesting that it would - just that white and gold is not always gaudy. In fact, with the rose window as backlighting, w&g wouldn't stand out at all.

 

Another (probably even more important) factor: it wouldn't look FRENCH. Not that that seems to matter in this location.

 

I await someone posting a pic of something to contradict me (!).

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I agree.

 

If the Positif-de-dos case were to be returned to the tribune as it now stands, as Friedfich states, this would spoil the present proportions of the main case. In addition, the tribune is quite deep and the Positif would be some distance from the main organ. There would also be the problem of the console: should it be turned through 180 degrees, or left as it is?

 

Since the present Positif division (in the main case) is perfectly adequate, I cannot see any real need to re-instate the former case. (If it, and the main case, were also to be repainted white and gold - which was another of Cochereau's wishes - it would look hideous, if not actually gaudy.)

 

I am sure all the points you raise are valid, as too are Friedrich's.

 

However, I do wonder why Pierre Cochereau should suggest the return of the Positif de Dos? He must have had strong musical reasons for its re-instatement. On the colouring of 'white and gold', I certainly agree with that. I don't think that would look good at all in Notre Dame. But then in a similar vein, the new console to my eyes looks lurid as well.

 

It should also be remembered that the Positif de Dos was still in place in 1863, when the drawings of Viollet-le-Duc at this time included it. It was only at the very last minute, after the contract was signed, that Viollet-le-Duc suddenly changed his mind about it. Hence its exclusion, together with the subsequent changes to the tribune. Apparently Cavaille-Coll didn't mind, including the Positif as you say in the main case.

 

I still think the re-instatement of the Positif de Dos would still, from an aesthetic and historical viewpoint, look attractive. And I'm sure Pierre Cochereau had very strong reasons to include it.

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About the white-gold colouring, it might have turned out in this vein, which I think is far from unattractive. What you can also see here is the huge part of the case below impost level that creates that elegant balance to the large towers and flats. It’s this elegance that the Notre-Dame case today is lacking. Despite its baroque carvings, it always looms low in the shadows. Organs of the French classical era never loomed.

 

On this page (which most of you probably know) you may have a look at the subsequent stoplists of the organ, along with the drafts by Cavaillé-Coll and by Cochereau that included the Positif-de-dos, and with some of Viollet-Le-Duc’s drawings, if in low-definition. CC’s draft was far from the monumental organ that he built in the end. Cochereau’s plans, on the other hand, included an 18-stop Positif that would have been a full complement to the Grand-orgue and Solo divisions from his days. Today, the Plein-jeu classique is a bit isolated in the Solo, it lacks its counterpart – which would have been that Positif with a petit – or rather « petit » – Plein-jeu. As you can see from the stoplist, it would have been an animal quite different from its namesake within the main case.

 

I can but marvel at the way the titulaires come up with ever new ideas to expand the limited resources of this instrument.

 

Best wishes

Friedrich

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Personally, I think PL's style is extraordinary - he has the ability to conjure that elusive extra-musical atmosphere within the context of the Mass, as did PC.

 

The organ of Notre-Dame is one that has, and will continue to grow and change according to taste and technology of the day (as opposed to St Sulpice and Rouen, say, which are both fabulous monuments to their creator). Had Vierne had funds, the ND orgue would have, possibly, changed more radically than under PC's custodianship, and since - including the addition of an "English" Diapason, with much else, and a multitude of couplers with a new English/American console!

 

I rather like the new console which pays homage to CC with its hints of terracing. I also think the Titulaires are better judges of what is appropriate than ringside commentators!

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Personally, I think PL's style is extraordinary - he has the ability to conjure that elusive extra-musical atmosphere within the context of the Mass, as did PC.

 

The organ of Notre-Dame is one that has, and will continue to grow and change according to taste and technology of the day (as opposed to St Sulpice and Rouen, say, which are both fabulous monuments to their creator). Had Vierne had funds, the ND orgue would have, possibly, changed more radically than under PC's custodianship, and since - including the addition of an "English" Diapason, with much else, and a multitude of couplers with a new English/American console!

 

I rather like the new console which pays homage to CC with its hints of terracing. I also think the Titulaires are better judges of what is appropriate than ringside commentators!

But you are yourself a ringside commentator!

"De gustibus non est disputendum"!

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I don't think contributors to an internet discussion forum can be criticised for being ringside commentators, after all, that's what such forums are for, among other things. But I think their remarks might carry more weight if they were prepared to tell the rest of us who they actually are. Now wouldn't that be nice.

 

CEP

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I think their remarks might carry more weight if they were prepared to tell the rest of us who they actually are.

 

Why? Names don't impress me in the slightest. The ability to play phenomenally doesn't automatically confer authority on what they write. Similarly someone who has no reputation may nevertheless have very deep knowledge. When authoritative knowledge and phenomenal playing do coincide I respect both aspects separately. I think that, over time, it is perfectly possible to divine our various members' areas and levels of expertise without knowing what their names are. PCND, to cite just one example, is extremely knowledgeable about French Romantic music and organs. I am not so naive as to think I am anonymous as I would like to be, especially since I was once incautious enough to reveal my name, but I can guarantee that those who know it will still be scratching their heads and wondering, "Who?" I prefer to let my ramblings speak for themselves. There are one or two here who seem to find them helpful occasionally (for which, I may say, I am immensely grateful), but I am quite sure that there are others who think I'm a few ranks short of a Mixture. Since I am of no importance that's neither here nor there.

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I prefer to let my ramblings speak for themselves. There are one or two here who seem to find them helpful occasionally

 

And I'm one of them. Don't take my post too seriously, please! In any case, it's off-topic, a sin which I commit too often.

 

CEP

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Yesterday night, I attended the concert by Latry

. The nave was completely full due probably to the new expectations of the instrument and the interpretation of the Rise of Spring....

Concerning the great organ that I have been lucky enough to listen since 1968, I would say that the restauration is well achieved.

The organ sounds clearer because of the clearing of dust and the new harmonisation . The new fact is the addition of the Résonnance (18 stops of the pedalboard extended to 56 notes) which seems to give a certain enhanced clarity and improves the expression effects as they are split into the swell boxes.

My global impression is that this organ has now become "ultrasymphonic" and has almost lost the deep ACC feature already put in question in 1965-67 .

For the Rise of Spring everyone was enthusiastic about the quasi infinite musical resources of the instrument: A real great moment thanks to Latry and his spouse.

 

The next step for me is to listen to the GO playing a Widor or a Vierne symphony to question his abilities to correctly interpret this authors (in particular the ACC reeds of the Récit and the Grand Choeur : how have they been harmonised by Quoirin and Cattiaux who are well known by their " neo-classic" incllnation?

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I went to the Yves Castagnet concert in the opening recital series last night. The opening item was the Cesar Franck 3rd Chorale which to my ears at least sounded quite authentic, seemingly using the C-C pipework only. The strangely compelling 2nd Symphonie by Dupre followed and immediately all the other colour sonds were evident, sparkling mutations and the big reeds etc. Castagnet's own 'Poeme' for two organs followed - an amazing and almost impressionist piece with Virgile Monin playing the choir organ. This piece could almost be said to have played 'the building' sonically and was highly effective. The organ can obviously do justice to a huge chunk of the repertoire and in that acoustic can be tremendously exciting or show off a wealth of quieter sounds - I enjoyed hearing it - not necessarily comparing it to any former incarnations but as the instrument that it appears to be now.

 

A

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:oMy God! The end of 'Litanies' was terrifying! I hid behind the sofa......

...so a performance entirely faithful to the composer's intentions....!

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Does anyone know please whether Olivier Latry has recorded Rite of Spring yet?

 

A

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Does anyone know please whether Olivier Latry has recorded Rite of Spring yet?

 

A

Yes I do.

Recording in Cannes together with "Trois danses"

http://www.orgues-cannes.org/?page_id=3411

Organ recently rebuilt by the alsacian organ-maker Mühleisen

Available on Spotify: Olivier Latry – Le sacre du printemps: I. L'adoration de la terre - Orgue à 4 mains

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A bit of french critism...

First a good one : the organ sounds more "coherent" now than it sounded since the last restoration.

But, as pointed out a very good article by Michel Roubinet : in times of very tight budget for culture, and especially pipe organs, when the Sacré Coeur's ACC organ had to be "restored" with only 150,000 € or so, was it necessary to enlarge again this instrument, and drift it further from its ACC state (already long gone, that's true...) ?

Then just a personnal remark, Cattiaux and Quoirin are very good organ builders, but it's strange to have an "ultrasymphonic" organ by two builders that despise any symphonic or post-symphonic organ since two decades...

 

Plus, having seen it and tried it (and several other friends too), the console looks particularly ugly and cheap to me (though it's not, it's actually very fine work and good materials...), and is not very convenient... Just my impressions...

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Not sure if it was already mentioned, but IIRC the casework of the former 'positif de dos' was still present (in storage) in PC's time.

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