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Female Organists


Guest Lee Blick

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Guest Lee Blick

I have come across few lady organists. Are there any at Cathedral level? Or is it mainly a male preserve? Why are there not many females? Surely all-male choirs could do with a few young ladies to keep them on their toes... well at least to watch the conductors. I'm not looking for one by the way. I'm not made that way. So please tell me.

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I have come across few lady organists.  Are there any at Cathedral level?  Or is it mainly a male preserve?  Why are there not many females?  Surely all-male choirs could do with a few young ladies to keep them on their toes... well at least to watch the conductors.  I'm not looking for one by the way.  I'm not made that way.  So please tell me.

 

Sarah Baldock - Winchester, Rosemary Field - ex-Portsmouth, are 2 I can think of off the top of my head...

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Louise Reid - formerly assistant Wakefield then Guildford - married to DOM at Peterborough and (I think) now i/c the girls choir at Ely.

 

AJJ

 

And Hazel Gedge at Brecon of course!

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Louise Reid - formerly assistant Wakefield then Guildford - married to DOM at Peterborough and (I think) now i/c the girls choir at Ely.

 

AJJ

 

And Hazel Gedge at Brecon of course!

 

 

I must correct Nick Tanner who stated Julie Tanner was in charge at Leeds R.C Cathedral. It is in fact Ben Saunders who Directs the Music and Julie is the one of the Organist's that accompanies. On the topic of Female Organist 's or are u specifically refferring to Directors's ? Well Elizabeth Stratford is Director of music at Arundel R.C Cathedral. Also, Louise who was Organ Scholar at Westminster Abbey some years ago is Assistant Director of music At Wakefield. Then theres Katherine Dienes no over at St Mary's Warwick formerly Assistant at Liverpool R.C Cathedral. So guys watch out !

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Guest Roffensis

If we include in this thread Lady Parish Organists in the R.C. church, it will go on longer than the Worcester one. but then sir!, shall Madam wish to use the pedals or will the swell sub octave suffice? :blink:

 

On a different note, female violinist seem by and large to be little marvels.

 

All best,

R

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I must correct Nick Tanner who stated Julie Tanner was in charge at Leeds R.C Cathedral.  It is in fact Ben Saunders who Directs the Music and Julie is the one of the Organist's that accompanies. On the topic of Female Organist 's or are u specifically refferring to Directors's ? Well Elizabeth Stratford is  Director of music at Arundel R.C Cathedral.  Also, Louise who was Organ Scholar at Westminster Abbey some years ago is Assistant Director of music At Wakefield. Then theres Katherine Dienes no over at St Mary's Warwick formerly Assistant at Liverpool R.C Cathedral.  So  guys watch out !

 

There is no need to correct Nick Tanner at all. Firstly I am called Nick Bennett, and secondly I never suggested Julie was in charge there.

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Louise Reid - formerly assistant Wakefield then Guildford - married to DOM at Peterborough and (I think) now i/c the girls choir at Ely.

 

AJJ

 

And Hazel Gedge at Brecon of course!

 

I assume that Reid must be her married name since the surname on the Messiaen CD released from Wakefield was Louise Marsh and two female assistant organists with the same Christian name at the the same cathedral in such close temporal proximity seems too much of a coincidence.

 

BAC

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I assume that Reid must be her married name since the surname on the Messiaen CD released from Wakefield was Louise Marsh and two female assistant organists with the same Christian name at the the same cathedral in such close temporal proximity seems too much of a coincidence.

 

BAC

 

 

You are correct - Louise Reid has a sister Joanna who is also an accomplished organist. Both were students of Marcus Sealy of Bath Abbey and Kingswood School - a superb musician and teacher and also a genius when it comes to service accompaniment. Anyone who heard the recent Choral Evensong from Bath will have heard him in action - his Widor afterwards was stunning.

 

AJJ

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Well it would seem there are quite a few ladies of the organ loft, and certainly more of them operating in our cathedrals and churches than on this forum!

 

If my wife is anything to go by there are times when we 'forumites' have some problems being taken seriously!

 

AJJ

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No one has mentioned June Nixon - St Paul's cathedral, Melbourne.

 

OK, not UK, but Anglican and with a fine T C Lewis!

 

True but then we would have to take in the United States, starting with Dorothy P at St John the Divine unless she has grown tired of waiting for the organ to be fixed and moved on.

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Guest Andrew Butler
True but then we would have to take in the United States, starting with Dorothy P at St John the Divine unless she has grown tired of waiting for the organ to be fixed and moved on.

 

Well, i still think of John Scott as an English cathedral organist, so why not? And I can't spell Dorothy's surname either!

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Anyone who heard the recent Choral Evensong from Bath will have heard him in action - his Widor afterwards was stunning.

 

AJJ

 

I would agree that technically, he played it well. However, the registration was slightly odd. The score is marked in such a way as to imply the use of the tutti throughout - using changes of clavier to achieve a terraced dynamic.

 

Personally, I thought that reducing to mf in the middle robbed the movement of much of its impact and grandeur.

 

However, as you say, his accompanimental skills were good; (that which I heard at any rate - I had a school choir practice for most of the broadcast).

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True but then we would have to take in the United States, starting with Dorothy P at St John the Divine unless she has grown tired of waiting for the organ to be fixed and moved on.

 

===================

 

 

The highly talented, vivacious and energetic Dorothy Papadakos is no longer the organist of St.John-the-Divine, New York.

 

I think she was "eased out" of the position, for reasons which are best not discussed on the board. She resigned the position however.

 

The current organist is Timothy J. Brumfield, B. Mus., and the Associate Organist is William E. Randolph, Jr., B. Mus.

 

Of course, it goes without saying, that Dorothy still has many friends. :(

 

MM

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===================

The highly talented, vivacious and energetic Dorothy Papadakos is no longer the organist of St.John-the-Divine, New York.

 

I think she was "eased out" of the position, for reasons which are best not discussed on the board. She resigned the position however.

 

 

MM

 

I seem to remember another Titulaire of St. John the Divine (David Pizzaro) who suffered an apparently similar fate. Perhaps it is not a very happy place in which to work....

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I have come across few lady organists.  Are there any at Cathedral level?  Or is it mainly a male preserve?  Why are there not many females?  Surely all-male choirs could do with a few young ladies to keep them on their toes... well at least to watch the conductors.  I'm not looking for one by the way.  I'm not made that way.  So please tell me.

==========================

 

 

Changing tac ever so slightly, it is a FACT that women drivers are terrible, even though they have less accidents. They don't seem to have the same spatial awareness as men. There aren't too many women composers, and that cannot be down to a lack of opportunity.

 

There aren't very many cathedral organists from the fairer sex.

 

HowEVER, what about concert organists?

 

There are a fair number who are right there at the top of the heap, and several who make a full-time living from it. They probably drive terribly, but as organists, they are spot-on and definitely not accident prone.

 

Which reminds me, I shall be going to hear Jane Parker-Smith in the near future, when she appears at Leeds Town Hall. That should be good!

 

MM

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Guest Andrew Butler
==========================

Changing tac ever so slightly, it is a FACT that women drivers are terrible, even though they have less accidents. They don't seem to have the same spatial awareness as men. ... Which reminds me, I shall be going to hear Jane Parker-Smith in the near future, when she appears at Leeds Town Hall. That should be good!

 

MM

 

20 odd years ago, I heard DGW play a recital at Cheltenham Ladies College, and over a drink afterwards she told the group of us who had come from Bristol for the evening that on the way there, she had been caught speeding on the M4.

 

I cannot mock, as on the way home I had a blow-out on the M5 whilst doing ** in the outside lane! (I had been drinking mineral water - honest!) I had a car-load of Bristol's finest organists, some of whom helped change the wheel. (Is there a "how many organists does it take....? joke??)

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Personally speaking, I would be happy just seeing JP-S (Unless she has changed substantially in the last ten years or so).

 

Best be prepared for a shock, then...I think you'll find she's gained a lb or two.

 

H

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