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Vox Humana

Buckfast Abbey

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To my ears these all sound different and improved since rebuilding. No doubt Downes was on hand when his creations were being originally voiced. I would be surprised if he were not.

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mgp    0

I had the opportunity to play the Sei Gregusset variations at the RFH using the registrations given by RD in his 1958 Pye recording. Sounded much the same to me.

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It looks like a typically ornate North American console from the first half of the twentieth century to me - no criticism intended by that, just an observation. I look forward to hearing opinions of the instruments when they are completed - with luck I might even hear or play them myself!

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John Furse    0

Slightly embarrassing: I'm unable to locate the specification.

 

The links I've previously used no longer work.

 

Could anyone furnish one that does, or post the spec. here, please ?

 

Many thanks.

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pcnd5584    0

To my ears these all sound different and improved since rebuilding. No doubt Downes was on hand when his creations were being originally voiced. I would be surprised if he were not.

 

Barry - I can speak of the instruments of both Gloucester Cathedral (on which I had regular lessons with David Briggs for several years), and Saint Albans (which I have played for choral services) from first-hand experience. I can assure you that the influence of Ralph Downes has certainly not dissipated - either with the passage of time, or as a result of additions or alterations.

 

To take first Gloucester Cathedral. There was virtually no revoicing, and only a few additions on the Pedal Organ, a re-pitching on the West Positive, one re-voiced rank on the G.O., and a subsequent addition of a Trompette Harmonique to the West Positive. The rest of the instrument is, tonally, as left by Downes (well, Philip Prosser, to be strictly accurate).

 

In the case of Saint Alban's Cathedral, again there have been a few additions, but the instrument is substantially as it was left after the re-pitching of the chorus mixtures some years ago.

 

David Drinkell and Vox Humana make valid comments about Downes: he was a player and teacher of some repute. He was well-travelled, and had studied many historic instruments, the better to inform the decisions which he made when designing the organ of the RFH.

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John Furse    0

A container is, e'en now, on its way Devonwards - according to Ruffati’s FacadeBook.

 

I believe the Abbey Organ’s webpage was 'taken down' and only (very) recently restored - in a revised version: www.buckfast.org.uk/ruffattiorgan.

 

The installation, for example, will now be "completed before 2018." There are other re-wordings and corrections. I can only assume this explains the temporary absence of the page.

 

I emailed the builders, only to be informed that all communications regarding the organ are being handled exclusively by the Abbey.

 

I would imagine that, once the container arrives, there will be a flurry of new and exciting photos.

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pwhodges    0

I was interested to note this paragraph at the end:

 

 

The result builds upon the ideas behind the design of the original Walker/Downs instrument, and enhances them significantly. The old organ was removed initially to protect the pipes (currently held in storage) from restoration work.

Paul

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DaveHarries    0

Slightly embarrassing: I'm unable to locate the specification.

 

The links I've previously used no longer work.

 

Could anyone furnish one that does, or post the spec. here, please ?

 

Many thanks.

Specifications for both instruments can be found at :

https://www.buckfast.org.uk/ruffattiorgan

 

I will be interested to see who does the opening concert: quite a trip from Bristol but I may attend.

 

Dave

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Dave Harries wonders who might give the opening recital. Buckfast's own Richard Lea would be a good choice and Carol Williams tells me she much likes playing organs built by Ruffatti.

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DaveHarries    0

If I were a betting man (I’m not), I’d put my money on a certain M. Olivier.

Yes he would be a good bet: I heard his recital at Worcester Cathedral a couple of years back, the first time I had ever heard him play live, and it was absolutely fabulous. Richard Lea and Carol Williams I have never heard live although I have heard CW on YouTube and think she plays very well.

 

Dave

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There are so many good organists to choose from. From a Catholic perspective, James Norrey, presently on the staff at Rochester Cathedral, is a very talented young organist. I have wondered about David Patrick, an excellent recitalist and he made an outstanding recording on the former organ at Buckfast. But why look outside when there’s Buckfast’s Richard Lea? Thanks to Spotify I recently listened to his exciting recording on Liverpool Met’s fine Walker organ in Priory’s Great European Organs series. Carol Williams has told me she has much liking for Ruffatti’s output and she could play a wide spectrum of organ music although this might get some looking down their noses.

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DHM    0

From a Catholic perspective, James Norrey, presently on the staff at Rochester Cathedral, is a very talented young organist.

 

As one of the choir directors at Rochester I would wholeheartedly second that.

He is a brilliant liturgical organist and a pleasure to work with.

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