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Mander Organs
Ronald Bayfield

Vierne's 1st symphony:final

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In the Final of Vierne's 1st Symphony the pedal enters at the end of the second bar. At the reprise (p 51 in my copy) it returns to 2 sharps and the pedal enters at the end of the THIRD bar. That second bar always seems superfluous to me; I think the listener expects to hear the pedal at the end of the second bar. I always omit that bar. Does anyone else? 

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As the music has been through so many keys, I think the 'extra' bar helps to establish the home tonality before the entry of the theme.  I've got used to it so it seems odd to imagine it without.

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The 'extra' bar has never worried me.  It may have been a practical issue...to give enough time to hit three ventils,  Pos. anches, Ped. anches and GO anches ?  Much easier to do with modern piston systems!

H.

 

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Noooo- it is a wonderful moment, that extra bar! Two bars of what we expect, then an extra bar- with the full Grand Orgue Anches suddenly added. Thrilling. Trouble is, lots of players ignore the directions; playing just the three bars on full organ viz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ef35EoXhMMk
as opposed to the effect of a Cavaille-Coll G/O anches added in that extra bar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLao2WHd1hU
 

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4 hours ago, ross cobb said:

Noooo- it is a wonderful moment, that extra bar! Two bars of what we expect, then an extra bar- with the full Grand Orgue Anches suddenly added. Thrilling. Trouble is, lots of players ignore the directions; playing just the three bars on full organ viz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ef35EoXhMMk
as opposed to the effect of a Cavaille-Coll G/O anches added in that extra bar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLao2WHd1hU
 

I absolutely agree with this. Cutting the third bar makes the recap so mundane. It's supposed to be a crescendo, starting from pp where the triplets kick in, through Pos+Récit, then GPR, then a molto cresc with the swell box to lead back to D major where the Positif anches kick in for two bars - and only then the final whack of full organ as the theme returns (and some decent Pedal reeds will continue the effect of the crescendo).  When it's done properly the effect is marvellous.  The trouble is, on most British organs the lack of a proper Positif equivalent, with suitable reeds, may render this effect difficult to achieve. You need artillery in reserve after the box is open.  Maybe you can add the Great reeds progressively (8' first, then 16' + 4'?), but if you can't produce the effect of a door opening onto a blaze of sunlight, it won't work properly.

Incidentally, I love Chorzempa's speed for this. Just right!  A good old rollick (as opposed to a headlong race) makes the theme so much more 'catchy' and hummable. (IMO, obviously.)

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As "Churchill" (the insurance dog) would say: OOHHH, YASSSS!! The Chorzempa version was awesome.
A shame that neither YouTube page named the organ used, though I'm guessing that Chorzempa must have been playing a C-C. It just sounded right.

[As a slightly off-topic aside, I was interested to see that two of the technicians named on Hurford's recording - both acknowledged experts in their field - are customers of mine.
It was a very humbling experience a couple of years ago when they asked me for advice about audio gear for their home organs.]

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Daniel Chorzempa recorded Vierne's Symphonie No1 for Philips Classics on the 1889 C-C organ at St Sernin Toulouse in August 1987.

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11 hours ago, oscar_rook said:

Daniel Chorzempa recorded Vierne's Symphonie No1 for Philips Classics on the 1889 C-C organ at St Sernin Toulouse in August 1987.

Thanks  - Much appreciated.

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LOVE the Chorzempa recording and totally agree about the slightly slower tempo - it's got a real self-confidence about it. 

It reminds me of the time my wife and I popped in to Notre Dame de Paris in about 2004 on holiday; we were lucky to catch M Latry* playing this at the end of mass and it was utterly stunning and exhilarating - I wanted to shout 'Bravo' at the top of my voice by the end (managed not to, thank goodness!).  It wasn't slow though!  I noticed Latry often talks about the relationship between the organ and the cathedral itself - how the organ is the voice of the building - and it really was as if the whole cathedral was singing.

Sorry, slightly off-topic.  Again. 

* it could only have been him!!

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