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The Finest Five Organs In The World?


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St Sulpice is not surprisingly coming out high in the list of finest organs - so I thought fellow enthusiasts might be interested in my trip to Paris last Easter. - Something I've always wanted to do :blink: . I started off at the Easter Vigil at St Sulpice at 9:30 pm on Holy Saturday. The congregation proceeded from the square, carrying candles, into a pitch black church... and :) ... a magnificent Daniel Roth improvisation..... The service was very long, including meditations, baptisms and communion celebrated by 16 preists! At the end, in semi darkness - a great improvisation lasting well over 20 minutes - many plainsong themes - seldom below forte .... :D

 

At High Mass on Sunday Widor's 10th B) and another fantastic improvisation :P .

 

A warning however, in the afternoon I went to Notre Dame - there was a continuous circulation of tourists crowds B) - even during the services!

 

Hearing both organs on the same day was interesting - there doesn't seem much of Cavaille Coll sound left at Notre Dame .... it's another all purpose organ. Nevertheless Oliver Latry finished the evening Mass with Widor's Toccata - I think this is an enormously effective piece (although much sneered at in these pages :o )- when played at a sensible speed on a large enough organ in the right acoustics.

 

Heaven is only a Train ride away... :P:lol:

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Nevertheless Oliver Latry finished the evening Mass with Widor's Toccata - I think this is an enormously effective piece (although much sneered at in these pages :unsure: )- when played at a sensible speed on a large enough organ in the right acoustics.

 

I have a sort of 'composite' Latry CD with the Vierne Carillon de W (that people were raving about here recently), some earlier music AND the Widor Toccata from NDdeP. He takes it at a good speed but the end is amazing - chamades coupled to everything and none of the 'quiet before the end' effect that is usual. 'Can't decide if it is a teeny bit vulgar or real good stuff!!

 

AJJ

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St Sulpice is not surprisingly coming out high in the list of finest organs - so I thought fellow enthusiasts might be interested in my trip to Paris last Easter. - Something I've always wanted to do :P . I started off at the Easter Vigil  at St Sulpice at 9:30 pm on Holy Saturday. The congregation proceeded from the square, carrying candles, into a pitch black church... and :)  ... a magnificent Daniel Roth improvisation.....  The service was very long, including meditations, baptisms and communion celebrated by 16 preists! At the end, in semi darkness - a great improvisation lasting well over 20 minutes - many plainsong themes - seldom below forte .... :D

 

At High Mass on Sunday Widor's 10th  :lol: and another fantastic improvisation :P  .

 

A warning however, in the afternoon I went to Notre Dame - there was a continuous circulation of tourists crowds :lol:  - even during the services!

 

Hearing both organs on the same day was interesting - there doesn't seem much of Cavaille Coll sound left at Notre Dame .... it's another all purpose organ. Nevertheless Oliver Latry finished the evening Mass with Widor's Toccata - I think this is an enormously effective piece (although much sneered at in these pages :o )- when played at a sensible speed on a large enough organ in the right acoustics.

 

Heaven is only a Train ride away...  :P  :lol:

 

 

As parisian, I use to visit St Sulpice and Notre Dame organs.

I consider St Sulpice as over hyped: it sounds a bit like a big harmonium. This is partly due to the Chalgrin's case which impedes the pipes to develop their real tone. This is also because ACC conceived this instrument differently (foundations stops sound more "gambés" than "flûtés"). Of course I enjoy very much listening to it but my preference goes to the first ACC in St Denis which is still classic (it was built in 1841) and romantic in the same time: in fact this instrument was 10 or 15 years ahead! I have also to add that the titular, Pierre Pincemaille , is an extraordinary organist capable to enhance the beauty of his organ! :P

With respect of Nore Dame I completely share the views of pcnd5584 !

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As parisian, I use to visit St Sulpice and Notre Dame organs.

I consider St Sulpice as over hyped: it sounds a bit like a big harmonium. This is partly due to  the Chalgrin's case which impedes the pipes to develop their real tone. This is also because ACC conceived this instrument differently (foundations stops sound more "gambés" than "flûtés"). Of course I enjoy very much listening to it but my preference goes to the first ACC in St Denis which is still classic (it was built in 1841) and romantic in the same time: in fact this instrument was 10 or 15 years ahead! I have also to add that the titular, Pierre Pincemaille , is an extraordinary organist capable to enhance the beauty of his organ! :lol:

With respect of Nore Dame I completely share the views of pcnd5584 !

 

When is it best to hear St Denis then?

 

AJJ

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My favourite organs (out of the ones I have heard) are below. The first two are in order of preference with Bristol top of the list and Cologne second. The remainder (3-5) are in no order of preference.

 

1. Bristol Cathedral, UK

Always sounds utterly superb to my ear. Certainly my favourite organ in Bristol.

 

2. Cologne Cathedral, Germany

This applies to the newer Klais. I first heard this the year it was completed. I was stood below the organ gazing up at it and someone played a chord on it that made me almost jump out of my skin because it was so loud. I have not heard the older (1949) Klais since it was restored though.

 

3. St. Mary Redcliffe, Bristol, UK

This one is my second favourite organ in Bristol. To my ear it doesn't sound as nice as the Cathedral one.

 

4. St. Nicholas, Amsterdam, NL

This is the church with the enormous front that stands right opposite Central Station in Amsterdam. I have been to church here a couple of times. Nice organ by Sauer and sounds fine but not, IMO, as nice as the other three.

 

5. Not sure what to put here. Will leave it blank for now but if I think of an organ to go here then I will edit the post.

 

Dave

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When is it best to hear St Denis then?

 

AJJ

 

The sunday mass is at 10 am. The great organ intervenes 4 times ( entrée, offertoire, communion and sortie) that is to say that you benefit from 15 to 20 minutes of superb improvisations as Pincemaille allways improvises.

To check his presence you can go to the heading "agenda" in his site : www.pierrepincemaille.com

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The sunday mass is at 10 am. The great organ intervenes 4 times ( entrée, offertoire, communion and sortie) that is to say that you benefit from 15 to 20 minutes of superb improvisations as Pincemaille allways improvises.

To check his presence you can go to the heading "agenda" in his site : www.pierrepincemaille.com

 

Many Thanks!

 

AJJ

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  • 1 month later...
As parisian, I use to visit St Sulpice and Notre Dame organs.

I consider St Sulpice as over hyped: it sounds a bit like a big harmonium. This is partly due to  the Chalgrin's case which impedes the pipes to develop their real tone. This is also because ACC conceived this instrument differently (foundations stops sound more "gambés" than "flûtés"). Of course I enjoy very much listening to it but my preference goes to the first ACC in St Denis which is still classic (it was built in 1841) and romantic in the same time: in fact this instrument was 10 or 15 years ahead! I have also to add that the titular, Pierre Pincemaille , is an extraordinary organist capable to enhance the beauty of his organ! :(

With respect of Nore Dame I completely share the views of pcnd5584 !

 

Thank you for your support, flûte harmonique!

 

I agree regarding S. Denis. The only omisssion (from my point of view) is an undulant. I would have added this in preference to the 1p Flûte (Piccolo) which Pincemaille caused to be added to the Positif. At any rate, it is not listed in the original specification.

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4. St. Nicholas, Amsterdam, NL

This is the church with the enormous front that stands right opposite Central Station in Amsterdam. I have been to church here a couple of times. Nice organ by Sauer and sounds fine but not, IMO, as nice as the other three.

 

Dave

 

Yes, I agree that this is a good instrument. I actually prefer it to the wheezing hulk which hangs around in the cavernous darkness of the Oude Kirk.

 

However, I did find the short-compass claviers slightly limiting. In the event, the only sortie which I could find at short notice, was the Final from Widor's 2me Symphonie. Notwithstanding, the organ made all the right noises for this piece and I really enjoyed playing it for the concert.

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