PipeChat Digest #2955 - Wednesday, July 10, 2002
 
RE: Dr. Hall Tours the UK/Oxford
  by "John Foss" <harfo32@hotmail.com>
GOOD ORGANS IN LOUSY ROOMS
  by "douglas morgan" <dkmorgan76209@yahoo.com>
 

(back) Subject: RE: Dr. Hall Tours the UK/Oxford From: "John Foss" <harfo32@hotmail.com> Date: Wed, 10 Jul 2002 05:07:13 +0000     Dear List Colin Mitchell wrote on 9th July >On tonal grounds I agree with John Foss....New College is quite a fine instrument, but its build quality is, = if I recall, a bit suspect.   >UK I cannot deny that GD&B did tend to produce variable quality of = manufacture, and they were certainly not in the Frobenius class, but who is? They experimented quite a lot with "new" materials - chipboard for example - because Mauric Forsyth Grant believed it would have a longer life and be less susceptible to the vagaries of the weather than wood. However, just = as some of Mander's post war work was often "suspect" - he did put up some instruments which were pretty grotty, mostly out of what I think was = called the "London Organ Store" -the firm went on to greater things as time progressed, and G D & B did likewise. Alas, they disappeared from the = scene after the move to Davies' in Nottingham (I don't think they exist today), however I would be interested to see the state of St Mary's Priory, Fulham =   and the Lyon's concert hall at York University today, - perhaps Alastair Disley could tell us? John Foss     _________________________________________________________________ Send and receive Hotmail on your mobile device: http://mobile.msn.com    
(back) Subject: GOOD ORGANS IN LOUSY ROOMS From: "douglas morgan" <dkmorgan76209@yahoo.com> Date: Tue, 9 Jul 2002 22:39:45 -0700 (PDT)   It was very interesting to read Colin's e-mail and Ron Severin's response regarding Leeds Parish Church in the UK. I have never been to England, and have therefore never heard that organ.   I have heard quite a number of such situations here in the United States, and the one particular one that comes to my mind, is the organ at St. Luke's Methodist Church in Oklahoma City. This is a 4-manual =C6olian-Skinner of 95 ranks in what is, in my opinion, one of the worst acoustical environments in existence. The place is so dead that nmuerous attempts by the company to finish the organ have made it only fairly acceptable.   On the other hand, I have seen some very mediocre organs placed in wonderful, resonant buildings that gave a rather good account of themselves. The good organs in the lousy buildings left no doubt of their quality, but the lousy acoustics took it's toll on the overall effectiveness leaving one to think "What a wonderful organ this would be in a good building."   It always amuses me that organ salesmen will take committees made up of people in churches who know the least about organs, to some place like St. Mark's Cathedral (Episcopal) in Shreveport, Louisiana. Here is a large breathtaking Gothic building with acoustics that most of us only get to dream of, where a vacuum cleaner sounds good. These committees get the impression from this 115-rank =C6olian-Skinner, that they are going to get an organ which sounds just like this one for their church which has the acoustics of a well-appointed bedroom.   If you have a padded cell for a church, why bother with a good pipe organ?   To sum it up, the good acoustics contributes 90% of the effectiveness of a successful organ installation.   D. Keith Morgan       __________________________________________________ Do You Yahoo!? Sign up for SBC Yahoo! Dial - First Month Free http://sbc.yahoo.com