Author Topic: Minimum specification of small organ  (Read 86613 times)

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revtonynewnham

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #20 on: July 14, 2011, 07:08:08 PM »
Hi

As I understand it, the Resonance division is full compass, whereas the Bishop had an additional manual, to the left of the main keyboards, allowing another player (with strong fingers!) to play the pedal line if the main player wasn't able to use the pedals (a far from uncommon situation when the organ was built).

As far as I know, the Bishop is unique in this regard.  Another approach to strengthening a possibly inadequate pedal department can be seen on the organ in Haslingfield Parish Church - see http://www.npor.org.uk/cgi-bin/Rsearch.cgi?Fn=Rsearch&rec_index=C00877

This is another Bishop - but rebuilt here by Peter Bumpstead in 2001.  The original organ had a Tenor C swell - which has been retained, but rather than the "Choir Bassw" (i.e. the lower 1 1/2 octaves of the Choir manual) having just an unenclosed Stopped Diapason (or a permanent coupling to the Gt St Diap) as typical, they have 3 stops, playable on both pedal and "choir bass" (an octave apart).

Every Blessing

Tony

pcnd5584

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #21 on: July 14, 2011, 10:49:10 PM »
... The Acoustic Bass on that stupendous instrument uses Dulciana pipes for the Acoustic Bass's independent quint rank (the unison being, I believe, borrowed from the 16ft Open Wood) and they blend very well, providing a satisfying soft 32 for when the colossal Double Open Wood is too big. A true flute would be far too prominent - I remember vividly encountering the organ at Petworth PC where the unison was Open Wood and the quint was taken from the Bourdon. The effect was the same as playing on a 4ft flute and Nazard, only further down - no 32ft effect, just a 16ft fundamental and masses of quint.

Although, as far as I know, this is the only such example. However, I can think of many examples where the quint was taken, either from the Bourdon or a separate rank of stopped wooden pipes. Yes, of course it depends on the scale and voicing of the pipes (and the acoustics of the building), but there are a number of examples which are quite satisfactory. The organ of Chichester Cathedral is one; Gloucester Cathedral is another. In fact, the new Pedal mutations on this instrument were most favourably reviewed, following the opening concert (at which I had the privilege of acting as page-turner and occasional registrant to David Briggs). True, they included the Tierce (6 2/5ft.) and Septième (4 4/7ft.) - but the Quint was derived from the Subbass. It is simply not correct to say that 'A true flute would be far too prominent.'

For the record, one of the most effective (partly) quinted 32ft. stops I have encountered, is that on the organ of Saint James the Great, Kilkhampton, Cornwall. In 1892, T.C. Lewis added a 32ft. Sub-Bass. In 1958, Roger Yates rebuilt this instrument as a twenty-stop neo-Classical instrument, adding a French Bombarde to the Pedal Organ in 1962. The 32ft. is 'real', down to G (that is to say, it consists of fairly wide-scaled Bourdon pipes). Below this, it is 'quinted' on itself - but a fourth below. Whilst one may baulk at this (on paper, it should not work); yet, in this comparatively intimate church, with no appreciable resonance, the effect is superb, right down to the bottom note.


Fair cop on the extra drawstop on the Choir. I also hadn't thought of the possible tuning problems with the Flute celeste! How does yours at Wimborne work? As for the way the Choir and Solo are borrowed - Mercklin often borrowed stops to form a Choir organ, Schulze did something similar with the Doncaster Solo organ... The Hautboy is there for a reason - they can be very useful on the Choir. That on the Ewell Willis (http://www.npor.org.uk/cgi-bin/Rsearch.cgi?Fn=Rsearch&rec_index=D08165 (admittedly an Orchestral Hautboy) could be very useful and blended well with the honky Corno di Bassetto to provide a moderately convincing Cromorne.

You have mis-read my description of the Wimborne flute céleste. We do not actually have such a stop. It is simply a lucky fluke. It is almost impossible to tune the Swell Stopped Diapason 'dead' to the G.O. Rohr Flute - the result, whilst sounding absolutely fine in combination with other ranks, is a pleasant undulating flute effect, which is both restful and useful.

I am sure that one could make a case for all sorts of derivations and borrowings; however, on most English organs, the Hautboy/Hautbois/Oboe is placed in the Swell Organ - where it is also very useful. I have played a number of instruments which possessed an Oboe on the Choir Organ; such stops have invariably been of the orchestral variety - and often not at all the same thing as a Swell Oboe. The Hill/HN&B organ at Saint Stephen's, Walbrook is a case in point. I wish that the former Clarinet had been retained instead.


A Mixture isn't a necessity when the basic chorus has been voiced sufficiently brightly. I remember reading that one former organist at Southwark Cathedral rarely went as high as a Fifteenth and never used Mixtures and I can well understand why. Full Great to Mixture at Southwark is like stepping under a cold shower - very nice, but not to be used all the time. The reason for the leathered open diapason is that no other OD can give such warmth, power and prompt speech all in one. Schulze's big-scaled ODs are very nice but they do come on rather slowly. Those flutes were intended to be part of the Great, with all Choir stops borrowed, as Merklin often did.

I would dispute this, as a matter of personal preference. In any case, the chorus up to 2ft. in the G.O. at Southwark is not particularly strong on its own - it is when the IV-rank Mixture is added that this chorus comes to life. The same is true, to an extent, at Saint John's, Upper Norwood - or at least was, the last time I heard this in the building.

I, too, have read the description of the former organist at Southwark cathedral. As far as I recall, it did not specifically mention that he never used the mixtures - simply that people 'never heard half of it'. Perhaps you can find the relevant source, in the interest of accuracy.

With regard to leathered Open Diapasons, whist you are, of course, entitled to your viewpoint, to judge from the number of instruments which have had the leather removed and the stop revoiced, it is possible that not everyone would agree with you.


Look at a good many Cavaillé-Colls - no Swell diapasons. Again, Exeter College Oxford has no 8ft diapasons (though it does have a 4ft Prestant for some reason). Why would you need a secondary diapason chorus on the Swell on a mere 20-rank instrument? The strings would be quite keen (not quite to Hope-Jones' standards) but, again, needn't be unblending: one of my favourite organs, a 13-stop Henry Jones, has a Viole d'Orchestre and a Voix Celeste, both keen, which blend beautifully with the Lieblich Gedact.

To quote Cavaillé-Coll as an example is arguably spurious - the style and quality (I mean aural - not value for money) of the voicing of his foundation stops * meant that a perfectly satisfactory result was obtained. In any case, since no organ by Cavaillé-Coll was designed specifically for choral accompaniment (in the Anglican sense), the absence of a Swell Open Diapason is not any great handicap. On my own church instrument, this stop is absolutely invaluable.




* Again, I am not thinking merely in terms of the G.O. 'four', here.


The thoughts behind this design were to provide a moderately versatile small organ in the Romantic tradition without any pandering to the post-Organ Reform Movement way of thinking. Pretty sounds, yes, seamless crescendo, yes, but, with a Lewis-like 8/4/2 diapason chorus and reeds designed along Father Willis lines, to give power, width and bite, the full organ would be nowhere near thick or dull.

Again, this is a matter of opinion: mine is that your scheme is far from versatile, there being a number of previously mentioned omissions which I regard as somewhat more essential than endless borrowings and derivations.

Your original post made no mention of 'reeds designed along Father Willis lines'; such stops would indeed give power, vigour (my preferred description - I am not sure what is meant by 'width', in terms of organ reed stops) and bite. Salisbury is nothing without its chorus reeds.


I didn't mention HNB - I said N&B, pre-Hill merger. Moot Hall has more independent Pedal pipework because it's got a hang sight more than 20 ranks - looking at NPOR, even allowing for the Pedal 8fts possibly being extended, and going by the original spec (without the neobaroque alterations), it must have had at least 34 ranks. The same goes for the secondary chorus - quite possible if you're prepared to accept the cost of another 14+ ranks. I shouldn't be surprised if the Mixtures were later too - N&B didn't usually provide so much, and, with a bright 8-4-2 chorus, they wouldn't be all that necessary.

No - but you did mention the instrument in Colchester's Moot Hall, in defence of your argument - which is why I looked at the scheme, and drew my own conclusions. Without further conclusive evidence, your conjecture regarding the compound stops being a later addition will have to remain precisely that - a guess.

As for Tierces and Twenty-Firsts in mixtures: so what? Many Baroque organs had Tierce mixtures, as Pierre Lauwers will have told you. Trost, Hildebrandt etc... Tierce mixtures and Bach go together fine!

And as I have also commented to Pierre on many occasions, there are plenty of Baroque organs which possessed predominantly quint mixtures - I have, on a number of occasions, supplied firm evidence to support this - with postings of complete mixture schemes.

In any case, the matter of Trost is rather less clear-cut than has been suggested. He only attempted two major projects in his lifetime - and one of those (Waltershausen) had to be finished by another builder. §

Once again, it is a matter of personal taste. If you like the purity of your Bach (arguably) sullied by what I regard as the irritating, reedy jangle of tierce mixtures, then this is an entirely personal opinion - no more or less valid than my own.




§ Trost probably took almost twenty years to build this instrument - the dedication is not precisely documented, but might possibly have been in May, 1741. ...'These historical facts seem very strange when one considers what a significant organ project was involved. In the case of similarly placed organs, such as Zacharias Hildebrandt’s organ in the St. Wenzelskirche in Namburg (also a city organ project), there was a crowning completion ceremony with famous examiners (such as Bach and Silbermann) and an opulent feast of organ music. No report of anything of this kind has been handed down to us about Waltershausen'. (My emphasis.)


Also, the Harrison-style Harmonics to which you refer contain twenty-firsts for a reason. These were never intended to be chorus mixtures to cap 8-4-2 open diapasons! They were supposed to be drawn with - or even after - the reeds. When one hears a good H&H organ which has such a mixture being played as it was intended to be played, it all falls into place. The reeds can be rather pervasive but lacking in bite without the Harmonics - add the Harmonics and suddenly they've got that missing piece.

If you think that I was not already aware of all this, you have not read my many posts on the Mander board regarding this point. I know perfectly well why Arthur Harrison included both the tierce and the flat twenty-first in his Harmonics. M y rejoinder (as I have written elsewhere, on more than one occasion) is that I regard the tonal design of both his Harmonics and his Trombe to be fundamentally flawed. Incidentally, Lieut.-Col. George Dixon was, I thought originally, a gunnery sergeant - but actually it was worse: artillery. It is highly likely that his hearing had sustained permanent damage - which could easily account for his taste in reeds.

I've heard this at Tooting (a little-known masterpiece) and Margaret Street and it really works. Don't demand of an organ that which its designers never provided for! A FHW or an Arthur Harrison will never be a Bach organ (even some extremely clever registration and playing never yielded really satisfying Bach at Ewell) but if you play English and French Romantic music on it, it'll work! Oh, and I'm pretty sure Cavaillé-Coll's big Plein Jeus (like the seven-ranker at Caen) often had 21sts in them.

Cavaillé-Coll - flat twenty-firsts in compound stops? No. This is again pure conjecture on your part. He did provide separate stops at 4 4/7ft., 2 2/7ft. and 1 1/7ft. pitch on various larger organs - such as S. Sulpice and Nôtre-Dame, Paris.

I have played for services on the instrument at S. Etienne, Caen - may I assure you that the compound stops do not contain the flat twenty-first.


Without in any way wishing to sound disrespectful - and I do share some of your tastes, particularly for the best of Walker's 1960s work - I might suggest that your distaste for leathered diapasons, powerful, rounded English reeds and Tierce/Harmonics mixtures is perhaps coloured a little by prejudice.

Disrespectful? No - just plain wrong.

It has nothing to do with prejudice - and everything to do with the fact that I happen not to like the sounds of such stops - and in a number of cases, have found little or no musical use for such tonal extremes.


I can't comment on your experiences at Crediton, but only suggest that the recent rebuild by a little-known builder (not the original) might not have been the best thing. On the other hand, Michael Farley may be a superb craftsman and voicer - never having encountered any of his work, I cannot possibly comment.

No - but I can. I have played it both before and after the (comparatively) recent work. To the best of my knowledge, Michael Farley's contribution to the tonal side of the restoration, was to provide a 32ft. extension of the Pedal Ophicleide, an 8ft. extension to the G.O. Double Geigen (playable on both Pedal and Great organs) and a new top octave to the Choir Orchestral Bassoon. To my ears, the rest of it sounds pretty much as it did prior to this work. The NPOR survey is wrong on some details - for example, the Swell Mixture has always been 12-19-22 at CC; it never contained a tierce.

The fact that the instrument was left for many years in only a semi-finished state by H&H also suggests that it might not have been a total thoroughbred. I know what you have also said about Bournemouth - the H&H there has been so knocked about (thinking particularly of the removal of the Harmonics mixture) that I don't think it can be considered representative.

The H&H organ at Crediton Parish Church was only 'semi-finished' with regard to the casework - a not uncommon state of affairs with this firm.

Having previously been Assistant Organist at Saint Peter's, Bournemouth (and having also played it for Choral Evensong last Sunday, for a colleague) , I am only too well aware of the fact that it is no longer representative of Arthur Harrison's work.


I make no apologies for being a big fan of Willis, Harrison, Norman & Beard and Hope-Jones. The last remains the most persistently underrated and villified organ-builder and designer in history, which is all the more tragic since few who do him down have ever heard one of his organs. One by one the few survivors are going... Roehampton... Worcester... All Saints Upper Norwood... at least there's one Ingram-built RHJ left in St Oswald, Hartlepool, unplayable since the 1970s and so - thank God! - very largely intact and unmolested, now in possession of a Grade 1 BIOS Historic Organ Certificate. It's high time this instrument was restored (perhaps put some pressure on the local ship-scrapping yards for funding?) and that it was used as the basis of a total re-examination of RHJ's work.

You are entitled to your point of view - but, again, the fact that many instruments by Robert Hope-Jones have either been replaced or altered out of all recognition may suggest that this type of tonal style was of limited appeal.

Having played an example at Pilton Church (before it was altered) and the instrument at Worcester Cathedral (before it was removed), I cannot say that there was even the slightest resemblance between these two instruments - even allowing for the vast difference in size. In any case, since H&H (and in 1978, Wood, Wordsworth & Co.) had several attempts at 'sorting out' that at Worcester, I doubt that there were many tonally untouched ranks left from the Hope-Jones organ.

It may be worth remembering that he was actually trained as a telephone engineer. Whilst this does not in itself preclude the fact that he might have produced some good instruments, I would suggest that those which he did build (particularly those of larger size) were fundamentally flawed in their tonal design - and in fact were nothing more than 'orchestrions'.

When one strays so far from the true chorus structure of the organ, and merely provides a plethora of 8ft. and 4ft. stops, with a number of examples of tonal extremes, I would suggest that such an instrument cannot, by its very nature, be regarded as truly representative.

At this stage, it might be worth returning to the actual topic of this thread. Clearly there is little likelihood of me persuading you to alter your opinions. Conversely (and again, without wishing to resort to being discourteous), there really is nothing you can say which will convert me to your way of thinking.



« Last Edit: August 24, 2011, 01:39:04 PM by pcnd5584 »
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Brian Daniels

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #22 on: July 15, 2011, 12:02:31 AM »
The aspect of the simulation of Open Diap. 8ft timbres by the use of a Flute 8ft as the fundamental tone plus a 4ft Principal raises an interesting thought. Because the two stops are independent they will be primarily heard as two sounds because the harmonic ingredients of both are not sychronised (free phase ). The 'Open sound' works after a fashion and was acclaimed as a good subsitute in the 60s when Open Diapasons were not incorporated into the schemes of small organs in particular. Ironically the arrangement would be more successful in certain electronic organs where the notes are derived by frequency division.

I remember as a lad yearning for a pedal 16ft Trombone by coupling the Gt Trumpet to the Pedal 16ft Open wood and 'pretending' it was the real thing!

A hybrid is of course the Haskell bass in which a parasitic resonator, which is a stopped tube, is inserted into a normal but wide enough open flue that is, stopped side at the open end of the host pipe. The inside pipe provides the ground tone and is excited by the energy from the host open pipe an octave higher. This is an effective way of providing a compact 'Open 16' for the pedal. The drawback here is the limitation of the power of the fundamental due to the inherent limit to the diameter of the inside parasitic resonator.

Brian Daniels.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2011, 12:04:03 AM by Brian Daniels »

pcnd5584

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #23 on: July 15, 2011, 02:02:04 AM »
To pick up on just one point tonight (since it is now 02:00 and I am a little sleepy)....

Since no organ by Cavaillé-Coll was designed specifically for choral accompaniment (in the Anglican sense), the absence of a Swell Open Diapason is not any great handicap. On my own church instrument, this stop is absolutely invaluable.

Wasn't Blackburn designed for choral accompaniment in the Anglican sense?

Probably not - in 1875. In any case, the style of accompaniment peculiar to the Anglican choral tradition has evolved over many years. When Cavaillé-Coll built Blackburn, aside fron the fact that the repertoire was rather different, he provided (from the look of the paper stop-list) a fairly standard * scheme, with few concessions to English requirements, other than an identifiable 'full Swell' effect - if, indeed, such a combination was even recognised in choral accompaniment at that stage.

Interestingly, this instrument possessed a Diapason at 8ft. pitch on the Récit-Expressif.



* Whilst there was no absolutely standard scheme, in the same way that one might predict a standard H&H scheme for a three-clavier instrument (built around 1920-30), nevertheless, there were some features which appeared regularly in stop-lists of a certain size.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2011, 02:20:06 AM by pcnd5584 »
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pcnd5584

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #24 on: July 15, 2011, 01:23:39 PM »
As I understand it (and I may be quite wrong) an 8ft 'Diapason' on a C-C is actually a sort of stopped diapason? I have to confess that I hadn't NPOR'd it...

No - this is incorrect. It is an open stop. The Bourdon 8ft. roughly approximates to a Stopped Diapason.

For the record, where possible, I try to check other sources. The NPOR team do a good job, but naturally they depend on contributors checking the accuracy of their own submissions.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2011, 02:25:01 PM by pcnd5584 »
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revtonynewnham

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #25 on: July 15, 2011, 03:54:49 PM »


For the record, where possible, I try to check other sources. The NPOR team do a good job, but naturally they depend on contributors checking the accuracy of their own submissions.[/font]

Hi

So true - and trying to sort out the truth of contributions is sometimes far from easy!  We also like contributor's to quote the source of their information (site visit - with date! - we had one batch of updates which, when I checked, were from the contributor's notes of visits some 20 years earlier!  Relevant - but if I'd known that to start with it would have saved a LOT of time trying to sort out inconsistencies!)  or the source of info if from a publication, etc.  And "secondary sources" (including organ builder's published stop lists don't always tell the truth - and nor do magazines.  One of the glossy organ mags dropped a huge clanger recently, the printed stop list didn't correspond to the close-up photographs of the stop jambs adjacent!

Every Blessing

Tony
NPOR Editor)

organforumadmin

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #26 on: July 24, 2011, 02:34:32 PM »
Hi!


Whilst searching for Stephen Bicknell the following essay came to the surface with interesting things to say about minimum specifications:


http://www.stephenbicknell.org/3.6.01.php


Best wishes


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Holditch

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #27 on: July 24, 2011, 02:51:35 PM »
Excellent article, very interesting bit about helper bass pipes. Might try that one at home!

Marc
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pcnd5584

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #28 on: August 23, 2011, 01:51:05 PM »
It is interesting to note that there is a growing awareness amongst those who design (and those who commission) house-organs regarding the amount of upperwork which is considered to be desirable.

I recall the time last summer when I 'discovered' Cecil Clutton's old house-organ, in a new home. I was able to play it for a short time - frankly, half an hour was quite enough.

For some time, I have felt an increasing dissatisfaction (not to say concern) with house-organs which possess a lot of upperwork, with separate mutations and mixtures, even occasionally including a two- or three-rank Cymbale. I felt that this was likely to prove unsatisfactory - particularly within the confines of the intimate space of a room in a house. Given that I played Clutton's former instrument in a room with a high ceiling and hard plaster walls, I can only imagine its effect in its original surroundings - a basement (or semi-basement) room, with a low, flat, boarded ceiling.

For a house organ of two claviers, perhaps to be situated in a room measuring around twenty feet by twenty* ( and possibly with the organ in an alcove) and with a ceiling not less than ten feet in height, I would suggest the following:

PEDAL ORGAN

Sub Bass  16
Quint  (Std. W) 10 2/3
Violoncello 8
Flute  (Ext.) 8
Viole  (W+M; Ext.) 4
Flute  (Ext.) 4
Bassoon  (In Swell; Low 12 W) 16
Great to Pedal
Swell to Pedal



GREAT ORGAN

Stopped Diapason 8
Viola da Gamba 8
Wald Flute 8  (Old Walker type)
Principal 4
Harmonic Flute 4
Flageolet 2

Swell to Great


SWELL ORGAN

Open Diapason  (Low 8 std. M) 8
Rohr Gedeckt 8
Viola 8
Vox Angelica  (AA) 8
Gemshorn  (Conical) 4
Corno di Bassetto 16
Hautboy 8
Tremulant



* I am not sure that I would wish to have a house organ in a space smaller than this.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2011, 01:47:22 PM by pcnd5584 »
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David Pinnegar

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #29 on: August 24, 2011, 10:57:30 AM »
PEDAL ORGAN

Sub Bass  16
Quint  (Std. W) 10 2/3
Violoncello 8
Flute  (Ext.) 8
Viole  (W+M; Ext.) 4
Flute  (Ext.) 4
Bassoon  (In Swell; Low 12 W) 16
Great to Pedal
Swell to Pedal


GREAT ORGAN

Stopped Diapason 8
Viola da Gamba 8
Wald Flute 8  (Old Walker type)
Principal 4
Harmonic Flute 4
Flageolet 2

Swell to Great


SWELL ORGAN

Open Diapason  (Low 8 std. M) 8
Rohr Gedeckt 8
Viola 8
Vox Angelica  (AA) 8
Gemshorn  (Conical) 4
Corno di Bassetto 16
Hautboy 8
Tremulant



Hi!

A very charming instrument would result from this - interesting lack of Diap on Great - and two flutish sounds instead . . .  Would you use the Viola de Gamba with the stopped or the flute to give you a Diapason character or reverse things using the Swell diapason?

Presumably electric action?

With regard to upperwork perhaps one needs to come to a realisation that a Cornet was intended to be a very penetrating sound that could cut through as a solo in a large space, and similarly with the high mixtures.

For a larger than house organ, one might extend towards them even though the Colt Collection barrel organ extends to a 12th . . .

Over lunch the other day I was chatting with De Grigny on this forum who has written some very helpful definitive articles on French Baroque registration for the forum and he has some very interesting comments about the differences between English and French mixtures on account of the breaks and the necessity of the Tierce to bring out a clear line.

Perhaps a pertinant thought is the fact that in places of significant temperature variation and infrequent maintenance, a cornet can be helpful instead of an Oboe or Hautboi as well as being able to provide, as a Cornet Séparée those mutations.

(Incidentally, in chatting with member De Grigny I mentioned the linguistics Oboe - Hautboi - Haut Bois meaning High Wood and De Grigny pointed out that Bassoon is Bas Son - Low Sound, the two thereby coming together)

In your specification, a 16ft Bassetto is certainly an interesting idea providing the odd harmonics which would add great colour to the sound.

Best wishes

David P

Pierre Lauwers

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #30 on: December 04, 2011, 10:39:11 AM »
Good morning to all,

Here is my last one -though not really minimal- aimed at much effect with a simple electro-pneumatic action:

MANUAL I

Bourdon 16'
Open Diapason I 8'(Phonon, heavy wind)
Open Diapason II 8'
Flûte harmonique 8' (treble ascendancy)
Gambe 8'
Doppelflöte 8'
Principal 4'
Rauschpfeife 2r 2 2/3'- 2'

MANUAL II enclosed

Viole de Gambe 8'
Voix céleste 8'
Quintatön 8'
Traversflöte 8' (wood, treble ascendancy)
Flûte octaviante 4' (treble ascendancy)
Octavin 2' (ditto)
Sesquialtera 3r 1 3/5'- 1 1/3'- 1' ( yes, the "17-19-22"...))
Bombarde 16'
Trompette 8'
Hautbois 8' (draws Gambe + Quintatön)
Clairon 4'

MANUAL III enclosed

Aeoline 8'
Voix céleste II 8' (3 pipes narrower than II)
Dulciana 8'
Lieblich Gedackt 8' (double mouths like Doppelflöte, but here a soft stop)
Dulciana 4'
Flauto Dolce 4'
Harmonia aetherea 3r 2 2/3'- 2'- 1 3/5'
Klarinette 8' (free reeds)
Tuba 8' (heavy wind)

PEDALE (2 actual stops)

Contrebasse 16'
Soubasse 16' (I)
Grossquintbass 10 2/3'
Octave 8' (ext)
Grosse Flûte 8' (Doppelflöte from I)
Violoncelle 8' (I)
Bombarde 16' (II)
Trompette 8' (II)

David Pinnegar

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #31 on: December 04, 2011, 12:55:01 PM »
Dear Pierre

Firstly WELCOME to the Forum! It's a place where brainstoming and enthusiasms may flourish and certainly your specification speaks of that . . .

It seems a specification of particular creativity - the combination of a free reed Klarinette with a high pressure Tuba seems greatly unusual but you're clearly truly embracing a bridge between the best of classical harmonic structure and the orchestral with those luscious strings . . .

With the two rank Celeste what does your annotation mean about 3 pipes being narrower?

What sort of space does the instrument speak into? On account of the delicacy of Dulciana's at 8 and 4, a Flute Dolce and a Harmonia aetherea to match, clearly it's not filling the Albert Hall but expresses great charm . . .

The Hautbois - a synthetic stop? Doing this with a Gamba and Quintaton looks an intriguing solution . . .

I'm sure that it's possibly quite difficult for young organists who might come across a specification which isn't straightly conventional to find the sort of sounds creatively intended in a specification of ingenuity and creativitiy like this. Looking at a specification and translating it into an aural visualisation are two different things. Are there any nuances of sound that come out of particular combinations of these stops which might not be obvious at first sight which you've found particularly interesting? There's a lack of naked 2ft pitch - presumably made up for by the brightness of the Principal 4?

Many thanks for a very mind-tickling contribution . . . !

Best wishes

David P

Pierre Lauwers

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #32 on: December 04, 2011, 03:50:15 PM »
Dear David,

Thanks !

-The Klarinette and the Tuba indeed do not work togheter: actually, in the absence of a Solo Manual, the Tuba is placed on the third manual in order to respons to the first one, as it is customary in british organs.
(Here, rather I + II, as the Diapason Chorus is divided in two parts!)

The three manuals are ordered after the german romantic organ manner ("Abschwächungsprinzip"), that is, the first manual the loudest, the third the softest. Accordingly, the Voix celeste there is narrower, about "three pipes", i.e. three tones narrower than the one on the second manual.
The third manual is so essentially a "Fernwerk" intended for "celestial effects" and soft passages.

Quintatön+ Gamba = Hautbois: this was often done in german romantic organs. The 1907 Walcker organ in Namur (Belgium) had it.

This Specification is aimed at a normal church (in Belgium, so west-end position).

There is nothing that was not previously tried there (I am an historian). The lack of an independant Fifteenth goes back to...1700, with the Casparini organ of Görlitz. Isnard did the same later at St-Maximin-du-Var. The aim here is to empeach any 8-4-2 for hours on the first manual, as too many organists still do on such organs.

As I did imagine some scales and details I can answer some questions should it be desired.

Best wishes,

Pierre
« Last Edit: December 04, 2011, 04:13:08 PM by Pierre Lauwers »

David Pinnegar

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #33 on: December 04, 2011, 05:54:17 PM »
Dear Pieere

Thanks so much for these illuminations.

For those possibly younger organists to whom the explanation of the Celeste might be a mystery - Pierre's saying that as the pipes get thinner with increasing pitch, the scale of the celeste rank should be such that it is the diameter of the third higher pipe of the other rank of which it's sounding, naturally giving the appropriately proportioned diminished sound necessary for the detuned rank.

The 8-4-2 syndrome - yes many of us English organists do that sort of thing for the reason that so many British organs were built that way. Discussions such as this one are so valuable in throwing such problems of registration into the limelight.

Certainly on the continent and in France in particular where so many instruments were not in equal temperament, the Tierce and Quint based stops were so much more harmonious with the keys in which pure intervals flourished and more interesting too in the others. Blanket adoption of equal temperament at some stage had a lot to answer for in making British organs have to resort more and more to mere unsubtleties to make them more interesting, coming towards the "orchestral" instrument. It was perhaps in this manner of stripping away the harmonic tone colour that left many small instruments of the late Victorian period unable to give much registartional insight to organists . . .

St Maximin - with the Doublette and Quarte de Nasard on the Positif it had not struck me as leading one to avoid 2ft registrations. On the the Grande Orgue and Résonance, respectively the Prestant and Flute are present as the fourth harmonic in the Sieze Pieds aliquot structure - but the point is certainly interesting.

Best wishes

David P

Pierre Lauwers

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #34 on: December 04, 2011, 07:22:32 PM »
The Fifteenth is of course present, but not on the first manual, the loudest one; it is there that 8-4-2 was not possible. The Doublette was in the Fourniture.
At Görlitz it was in the....Rauschpfeife, with the Twelfth thus.
I resorted to the same idea here.
The 17th -the Tierce this in 1 3/5', but also at 4/5', or even 2/5' (the first Walcker organ in the Mulhouse evangelic church, 1866-70), and of course at 16' and 32' pitch, is very important in romantic design, but it is often included in Mixtures, without mention. Here we have the "17-19-22" after the Willis manner. Willis named it "Mixture", while such stops existed already in the 18th century under the name...Sesquialtera.
As they are indeed confronted to an aequal -or nearly aequal, because that matter is somewhat complex, even with 19th century organs-  temperament, those stops are better used with the reeds: in this design here, we have actually a "backbone" chorus 16-8-4-2 2/3'- 2' - 1 3/5'- 1 1/3'- ' plus
the reeds 16-8-4, split over Manuals I and II; alternatively, the tierce rank is softly voiced in soft Mixtures (Harmonia aetherea), to which they impart a "goldene" tone, very marked in Walcker organs, at Riga for example.

Best wishes,

Pierre
« Last Edit: December 04, 2011, 07:25:00 PM by Pierre Lauwers »

David Pinnegar

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #35 on: December 08, 2011, 11:27:28 AM »
Dear Pierre

http://www.organmatters.com/index.php/topic,1110.msg4850/topicseen.html#msg4850 is an instrument in England reputedly good with a clearly British 8 4 2 structure . . . channelling British organists along the lines you've been steering away from . . . 

Best wishes

David P

Pierre Lauwers

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #36 on: December 08, 2011, 11:49:04 AM »
Interestingly, this Fifteenth is extended from a 16'-8' Salicional !
To note also the Rauschpfeife ("Rauschquint") but on the second manual.

Best wishes,

Pierre

Bruise in the Muttastery

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #37 on: December 26, 2011, 07:21:55 AM »
Greetings,
This is my second post to OrganMatters and I'm very excited to find this topic.   I love small organs and am an admitted stoplist hound!

For a small instrument I would aim for:

GREAT
Bourdon 16  - wood with chimney from middle c
Open Diapason 8  -  metal in facade
Spitzflote 8
Principal 4
Waldflote 2
Clarinet 8

SWELL
Stopt Flute 8
Salicional 8
Quintadena 8
Violin 4
Harmonic Flute 4
Mixture IV
Oboe 8

PEDAL
Violone 16
Bourdon 16  from Great
Flute 8   open metal
Trombone 16

The organ is 2 manuals and 16 stops, 19 ranks.     I always want to have a 16 Bourdon on the Great which not only gives weight to the chorus, but also provides an additional unison stop (played 8 va) as well as a duplexed Pedal stop.   

To trim this organ down, I would  omit the  Trombone 16, the Mixture and Oboe.

If a three manual instrument is desired I would add:

CHOIR
Dulciana 8
Stopped Diapason 8
Chimney Flute 4
Nazard 2-2/3
Clarinet 8     (replacing the Great Clarinet with a small Trumpet)

bruise in the muttastery
gainesville fl usa

Bruise in the Muttastery

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #38 on: December 26, 2011, 03:31:07 PM »
Greetings,
Last night I was pondering my "minimal" stoplist and recalled that  19 stops is not minimal.  For a minimal stoplist, that can play a simple service perhaps:

GREAT:   Open Diapason 8

SWELL:  Salicional 8 tc, Dulciana 8 tc, Stopt Flute 8 tc, Stopt Bass 8

PEDAL: Bourdon 16, Flute 8

COUPLERS:   Swell to Great 4, Great to Pedal, Swell to Pedal

This stoplist would give four unison colours, and with the Swell to Great 4 coupler would give octave pitches to brighten and give a small chorus for hymns.    The reason for the one Swell to Great 4 coupler is to simplify the action, and 8' coupler would be an option.

This could also be done with three manuals by adding

CHOIR:  Gedeckt 8, Tapered Flute 4, Clarinet

I think small organs are a wonderful challenge.

Bruise in the Muttastery

AnOrganCornucopia

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Re: Minimum specification of small organ
« Reply #39 on: December 27, 2011, 01:03:59 AM »
Bruise, if you want a real multum-in-parvo job, just look up the Willis at Kilkhampton Methodist - arguably one of the most ingenious little instruments ever constructed!

http://www.npor.org.uk/cgi-bin/Rsearch.cgi?Fn=Rsearch&rec_index=D05164

 


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