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Concert hall consoles etc


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Thought I'd split this from the 'choir pits' thread as there seem to be two separate discussions going on.....

Someone said that in venues with two consoles, the attached one is rarely used.   Just speaking from experience at the Bridgewater Hall, the attached console is nearly always used for orchestral concerts, as the mobile one takes up too much stage space when there's a large orchestra.  The attached console has a much nicer and well-crafted feel but of course you can't hear the internal balance of the organ at all.  On the other hand, the mobile console has a slightly light and plastic-y feel (I have heard that it was bought in and not made by Marcussen themselves, but can't confirm that).

On Barry Oakley's comment 'if only they'd used a reputable British builder' - not sure if that was tongue in cheek but historically aren't British builders are just as prone to miscalculation as anyone else?  Similar remarks were probably made to the Manchester city fathers 150 years earlier when they chose Cavaille-Coll to build the Town Hall organ - which has been a fantastic legacy.

 

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5 hours ago, Dafydd y Garreg Wen said:

 

Only two, alas. This forum just isn’t what it used to be.

 

I can see half a dozen interesting discussions going on. Perhaps let us have your thoughts on the Hurford 'Laudate Dominum' or on 'Organ music from the Proms'. Have you played at 'Downside' or seen the work Nicholson's are doing at St. Laurence's in York. Martin Cooke is looking for help with Kenneth Blackwell and we'd love to know what is in your 'Room 101'.

The forum isn't as lively as it used to be but at least we don't have members, and I can think of two of days gone by in particular, making silly or unnecessary comments every five minutes!!

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Would the Walker 1986 organ in Bolton Town Hall (an insurance funded new instrument after a fire) be the last new civic instrument by a British builder? I seem to remember comment that it was disappointing, but I can’t remember the source or reasons. Can anyone enlighten?

St David’s Hall Cardiff has had well known problems too.

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Dafydd y Garreg Wen said:

I was only making a gentle joke about the (rather charming) tradition of threads on this forum going off topic, often very productively and sometimes in several quite different directions at once ....

In which case - I apologise!

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10 hours ago, DariusB said:

Thought I'd split this from the 'choir pits' thread as there seem to be two separate discussions going on.....

Someone said that in venues with two consoles, the attached one is rarely used.   Just speaking from experience at the Bridgewater Hall, the attached console is nearly always used for orchestral concerts, as the mobile one takes up too much stage space when there's a large orchestra.  The attached console has a much nicer and well-crafted feel but of course you can't hear the internal balance of the organ at all.  On the other hand, the mobile console has a slightly light and plastic-y feel (I have heard that it was bought in and not made by Marcussen themselves, but can't confirm that).

On Barry Oakley's comment 'if only they'd used a reputable British builder' - not sure if that was tongue in cheek but historically aren't British builders are just as prone to miscalculation as anyone else?  Similar remarks were probably made to the Manchester city fathers 150 years earlier when they chose Cavaille-Coll to build the Town Hall organ - which has been a fantastic legacy.

 

Almost twenty years ago, when   the composer Anwen Lewis and I were delivering “Organ Works”, a Key Stage 2 educational project at the Bridgewater Hall, the attached console of the Marcussen organ played an important role.  That the console is physically part of the instrument helped the children to understand that they were encountering not just some sound-producing machine, but an organ, a unity with which they could interact in a tactile way.

On their first visit to the hall, I used to guide the children to play a key on the Positive 8ft Principal, Gedeckt or Quintadena (IIRC). It seemed to me that the sense of physical connection with the instrument that the attached and mechanical console offered was a significant moment in the whole programme of encountering, beginning to understand the expressive possibilities of, and compose for that organ. Such intimacy is an immensely valuable experience of the organ, one that is physically different from that at the mobile console.

(That said, we did use the mobile console for the group performances of compositions on the second visit, for practical reasons.)


 

 

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20 hours ago, S_L said:

 

I can see half a dozen interesting discussions going on. Perhaps let us have your thoughts on the Hurford 'Laudate Dominum' or on 'Organ music from the Proms'. Have you played at 'Downside' or seen the work Nicholson's are doing at St. Laurence's in York. Martin Cooke is looking for help with Kenneth Blackwell and we'd love to know what is in your 'Room 101'.

The forum isn't as lively as it used to be but at least we don't have members, and I can think of two of days gone by in particular, making silly or unnecessary comments every five minutes!!

One thought:  now that continuity seems to be guaranteed and this forum will continue do you think those that left to join another forum might be tempted back? Could we inform/encourage them?

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5 minutes ago, father-willis said:

One thought:  now that continuity seems to be guaranteed and this forum will continue do you think those that left to join another forum might be tempted back? Could we inform/encourage them?

They know. I've said over there that I'd really like to shut the forum down now that we know this one is safe. That is currently still my intention but there is some resistance!

Steve

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8 hours ago, Steve Goodwin said:

They know. I've said over there that I'd really like to shut the forum down now that we know this one is safe. That is currently still my intention but there is some resistance!

Steve

I confess that I am one who has said that I'd be happy to keep both.
On the other hand, if all contributors were to bring their discussions here, rather than simply stop posting, I'd be happy to live with 'the original' exclusively.

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On 07/09/2020 at 22:25, John Robinson said:

I confess that I am one who has said that I'd be happy to keep both.
On the other hand, if all contributors were to bring their discussions here, rather than simply stop posting, I'd be happy to live with 'the original' exclusively.

What some of us like about the other site is that it allows discussion of digital organs and choral music - the former, without fear of upsetting the host... not that there has been any discussion of note, on that topic, tbh. I have written to the MD of the new company asking if they might be willing to allow this wider range of topics and Steve has as well, but there has been no response just yet. Personally, I am happy to read and contribute to both sites for the time being. 

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