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Paris Philharmonie

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The publicity over the opening of the Paris Philharmonie made me wonder about the pipework display - it's a large new instrument by Rieger.....

 

http://www.rieger-orgelbau.com/en/details/project/ParisPhil/

 

 

 

 

Inaugural Organ Recital, featuring Bernard Foccroulle, Philippe Lefébvre, Olivier Latry and Wayne Marshall, was held yesterday on the new Rieger organ in the Philharmonie de Paris. There is a video of the event available for viewing until August: http://live.philharmoniedeparis.fr/concert/1046894/grandes-orgues-olivier-latry-philippe-lefebvre-bernard.html

The whole thing lasted almost 3 hours, but one should take the time to listen to all four performers – it's worth it!

 

M

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It must be a nightmare, attempting to balance all sorts of considerations, when devising a programme for such an event. However, what struck me was the absence of any music from the French ‘Golden Age’- or that of Messiaen (!).

 

I have, so far, skimmed the whole programme, listening in to a few items – but will definitely return. Foccroulle’s Buxtehude and Bach were, as usual, stylish and exemplary. Lefebvre gave an interesting Franck and (with a couple of side-drummers), a Khatchatourian with élan. Latry displayed (and played with) his astonishingly casual panache (playing a series of transcriptions, as he does, from memory) and merveilleux Marshall closed the whole with Widor and an impro on the Cancan - beginning with a toccata of which Latry would have been proud. In the process, I'm sure he made most UK organists feel similar.

 

The organ doesn’t really look like one (more like a jewellery department in a glitzy store); sounds good, if slightly recessed (it is), though strangely ‘unfizzy’ for a big Rieger when at ffff - and its console could have been ‘lifted’ from the set of the forthcoming Star Trek movie.

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Thank you for drawing our attention to this. A most enjoyable experience.

 

The sound quality was pretty good though I wondered whether I was missing some of the extreme bass. I was listening on audiophile headphones and would certainly have heard it if it had arrived at my computer.

 

And might we have had a lady performer in the mix perhaps ... ?

 

CEP

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Wow. Looks like some organ. And a three hour opening recital too boot. Have bookmarked the link and will listen to it at some point. Colin is right, it would be nice to have a lady organist for the occasion. Although I can't think of any high profile French female organists active today. There must be some, with the rich heritage from the likes of Alain, Demessieux, Duruflé-Chevalier, et al.

I once had the privilege of playing the Rieger in St Giles in Edinburgh during an RCO event and I was hugely impressed by the quality of the instrument. This looks a very different beast, but I am sure to the same high standards.

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Not French, but resident in Paris and an associate of Guillou's, Yanka Hekimova is a stunning organist - she gave a couple of concerts in Belfast Cathedral when I was there (courtesy of Paul Vaughan's management).

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