PipeChat Digest #5038 - Tuesday, December 28, 2004
Re: Holy Name Cathedral, Chicago
  by <SWF12262@aol.com>
Music During Communion: (was: Philosophical/Educational Problem    for Ho
  by "Jan Nijhuis" <nijhuis@email.com>
Re: NEW Phantom of the Opera
  by "Jan Nijhuis" <nijhuis@email.com>
Re: Warranty
  by "Jan Nijhuis" <nijhuis@email.com>

(back) Subject: Re: Holy Name Cathedral, Chicago From: <SWF12262@aol.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 01:10:27 EST   Dear Pipechatters, I've followed the discussion regarding the organs at Holy Name Cathedral, =   Chicago, with some interest, having played both instruments. While the Casavant and the Flentrop each have their own peculiar "issues," in my = opinion the greatest deficiency is the room in which they are placed. I've never experienced a place of this size that is so acoustically dead. According = to the cathedral's website, the church is 223' by 126' by 70' high, and can seat = 1,520 people. Built between 1874 and 1875 (after the original building was destroyed in the great Chicago fire of 1871), the cathedral was = "stretched" in 1915, when the sanctuary was separated from, and moved 15' east of the nave. = The great remuddling was perpetrated in 1968-69. The sanctuary Casavant was installed in 1981; the gallery Flentrop in 1989, and there was a cover = article in The American Organist at that time, if I remember correctly. I've seen photographs of the cathedral before the remuddling catalyzed by the = Second Vatican Council, and the devastation is enough to make a grown man weep. Visual aesthetics aside, the use of carpeting would seem to be the major = acoustic villain, with the "1960s recreation room" wainscot (6' or 8' high?) = paneling in the apse and sanctuary not far behind. The sanctuary Casavant (about 30 =   ranks?) has no mechanical registration aids of any kind. The giant = gallery Flentrop has a few combination pedals, which will engage the drawknobs = when they are turned rather like a doorknob. I served as registrant on that = instrument for a major recital several years ago, and was kept quite busy! Aside = from questioning why the cathedral church of a major city would install an instrument that is so difficult to play and manage (the action is VERY = heavy if all four manuals are coupled and both organs have flat pedalboards), I = question why the powers that be refused to provide a decent acoustic environment. In = my opinion, the room is just plain ugly, both visually and aurally, and I = avoid it whenever I can. I've heard rumors about some major winding problems = with the Flentrop, but don't know about that for sure. There was a persistent =   cipher on the Positiv when I was registering, though. Similarly, I heard = rumors that the main reason Richard Proulx left the cathedral's employ was recarpeting of the nave. Again, these are nothing more than rumors -- = but they do reflect, to some extent, the scuttlebutt of the local organ community. Regarding educating the clergy, I'm engaged in the battle of hard surface =   vs. carpeting for our nave aisles at St. Lambert. Carpeting is = considerably cheaper in the short term, but I can only imagine the vast improvement = hard aisles would make! The pastor is worried about creating an echo chamber, = but is open to the idea of hard floors (if only the flooring he wants wasn't so expensive!) But I guess that should be a separate mailing. Survived Christmas and wishing you a Healthy, Happy, Prosperous New Year, Steve Folkers  
(back) Subject: Music During Communion: (was: Philosophical/Educational Problem for Holy Name? ) From: "Jan Nijhuis" <nijhuis@email.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 15:55:49 +0800   Larry Wheelock wrote:   > There are those among us who believe that the organ should provide=20 > a sound canvas -- present but unobtrusive (and essentially unheard=20 > with the conscious mind) behind the acts of worship, as if the acts=20 > themselves were not enough; like the background score to a movie.=20 > Still others prefer that sounds from the musicians cover the=20 > ordinary sounds which accompany the presence of a congregation:=20 > footfalls, whispers, coughing, breathing, etc.. Here in the North,=20 > the sound of forced-air heating is usually enough to take care of=20 > that need -- unless the heating itself is what you wish to cover.   <snip>   > In the end, there should be some kind of musical reason for the=20 > inclusion of an almost inaudible stop in any stoplist, especially=20 > in a small one where every stop must count for something. In most=20 > congregations, I cannot see the need for such a stop in an=20 > instrument of under 20-or-so stops.   Our congregation "undulates" between the three (sing/background music/silen= ce) ... most often "organ" hymn while the elements are being passed out to = the congregation. "Lucky me", I have a synthesizer (not even a Digital Orga= n) to do all the work ... while I have some acceptable sounds for the purpo= se, often I'll turn 90 degrees counter clockwise and play the piano for the= meditative pieces.   I'm not much of a fan of congregational singing during communion, but I fin= d that preferable to silence. If we had a regular choir, I might suggest a = Capella pieces. I thinks it's the fidgeting between holding hymnals and the= passing of the plates that makes the hymn-sing less appealing.=20   BTW, I abhor tremulents.   And to get everyone else's goat while I'm at it, my amplifier is behind a h= eavy theatrical curtain; sound-deadening material all over the room includi= ng carpet running half-way up the wall throughout the "sanctuary". Thank yo= u, I'll take the keyboard's digital reverb, the amp's spring reverb and the= external reverb whenever the "sound guy" can figure out which XLR input th= e output of my amp is running to.   Sundays ARE fun!   -- Jan Nijhuis nijhuis@email.com   --=20 ___________________________________________________________ Sign-up for Ads Free at Mail.com http://promo.mail.com/adsfreejump.htm    
(back) Subject: Re: NEW Phantom of the Opera From: "Jan Nijhuis" <nijhuis@email.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 17:36:16 +0800   I know of at least one set of "published" music for silent film that is ava= ilable in PDF form. J. S. Zamecnik wrote short bits for the pit pianist tha= t could be used for particular effect. Titles include, Indian Music, Orient= al Veil Dance, Chinese Music, Death Scene, Church Music (I've used this as = an offertory once) Mysterioso-Burglar Music, Hurry Music (for Struggles, Hu= rry Music (for Duals), Sailor Music, Plaintive Music.   PDFs of the files are available at http://www.cinemaweb.com/silentfilm/book= shelf/index.htm   Also check out http://www.perfessorbill.com/index2.htm   I suspect that most silent film pianists and organists got to the point of = improvising their own music.         ----- Original Message ----- From: atal <atal@sympatico.ca> To: PipeChat <pipechat@pipechat.org> Subject: NEW Phantom of the Opera Date: Mon, 27 Dec 2004 07:47:51 -0500   >=20 > Charlie Lester wrote: > "I have seen the silent version in a movie theater several > times, with Stan Kann, Bill Field, and, I think, Bob > Mitchell, playing the organ." >=20 > This may be a silly question: > Did all these organists improvise their accompaniment, or did they=20 > have a score of some sort available to them? Just wondering what=20 > the "common" practice was/is. >=20 > Andreas Thiel       -- Jan Nijhuis nijhuis@email.com   --=20 ___________________________________________________________ Sign-up for Ads Free at Mail.com http://promo.mail.com/adsfreejump.htm    
(back) Subject: Re: Warranty From: "Jan Nijhuis" <nijhuis@email.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 17:53:34 +0800   Robain,   I would think that all the major manufacturers have similar warranties on t= heir instruments. The local distributor would probably be the best source f= or help.=20   In the US, Ahlborn-Galanti is supported through their US Headquarters: Ahlb= orn-Galanti Organs 1164 Tower Lane Bensenville, IL 60106. They are able to = supply the local sales reps & techs.   Don't know how that is all handled in Australia.       ----- Original Message ----- From: robian@esc.net.au To: pipechat@pipechat.org Subject: Warranty Date: Mon, 27 Dec 2004 15:07:21 +1030   >=20 > Does Ahlborn-Galanti, of Italy, offer a factory warranty to=20 > would-be purchasers throughout the world? >=20 > Likewise Johannus, etc? >=20 > Anyone out there know? >=20 > Or, do you get stuck with a local dealer's warranty conditions? >=20 >=20 > robian.   -- Jan Nijhuis nijhuis@email.com   --=20 ___________________________________________________________ Sign-up for Ads Free at Mail.com http://promo.mail.com/adsfreejump.htm