MusingMuso Posted July 21, 2006 Share Posted July 21, 2006 I've just heard the future, and I don't like it! On a certain site operated by a digital organ-builder, I came across the usual sound-samples of their work, with numerous demonstrations of organ music. I listened to Bach, Vierne, Mendelssohn and Norman Cocker; all in mp3 format. Quite impressive if you're into electronic organs and computing. The I listened to Widor and the Durufle Toccata; the latter accurate in a way that I'd never heard before....a yard-stick performance for the budding Durufle-ist. The I started to read the rubric.......it pays to read the rubric......when I discovered that the Widor Toccata and the Durufle Toccata were not quite what they seemed to be. Apparently, the Widor had been created by scanning the score and then feeding into some programme or other (Vivaldi?). It was then fed back into the organ using MIDI, and recorded. Even worse was to follow, when I read that the Durufle had been started from scratch and perfected in a mere fortnight.....shades of Jane Parker-Smith, I thought. But no, it was anything but. Apparently, this "performance" had been created using "only a mouse, an electronic keyboard and a MIDI comaptible computer"............perfect....too perfect actually. All this is very impressive, but it does beg the question as to what will happen to real organists and real organs, when the entire organ-repertoire, in MIDI format, could probably be held on one CD and distributed to organ juke-boxes anywhere in the world at the speed of light. The term "the organ will now play" takes on a new and frightening twist, with sinister implications. I can't help but think however, that the makers of digital-organs are rather like the man who would sell second-hand H-bombs on e-Bay.....it lacks a certain sustainable business-plan, doesn't it? After all, by simply plugging your neighbourhood church into a data-bank, downloading the music and delighting everyone with "real time" music, ALL organs of any description could be completely eliminated, and to the delight of many clergy, so too would the organists that used to go with them. MM Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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