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.... I recall PCND saying that he'd heard superb Vierne on a cinema organ and I have to say I'd much rather listen to Vierne or orchestral symphonies in transcription - anyone brave enough to take on the Havergal Brian Gothic? - than 'Oh I do like the be beside the sea-side' and the rest of the sentimental twaddle that seems to be the stock-in-trade of too many theatre organists. For God's sake we want something with some weight and profundity to dig into intellectually, not just to appeal on a totally superficial level!
I give in, talkin to classical organists is like talking to a brick wall. I can see why everyone else has given up trying.When it comes to the proms, I dont know ANYONE who watches them.As for classical organ.......most people turn off/walk out/dont bother. Truth. If you dont want to beleive, dont.As for-- but too many are a grating reminder of a bygone era of holidays consisting of walks along seafronts in driving rain and greasy chips and mushy peas. What I would like to hear more of is the theatre organ being treated as what it is - thats what people enjoy, thats what brings crowds. I dont see any symphonic style organists drawing BIG crowds, especially in the UK. The theatre organ is NOT a symphonic instrument.
... If it is to be a TV Documentary, the man in the street will see Church/Classical organ and turn off immediately, but if you see a man in a white suit popping up out of the floor, I think it's more likely he will leave the TV on, even if for a split second to laugh at it! :-)
Howard Goodalls Organ Works covered ALL aspects, from the first organs to modern day, including theatre organs (he went to Blackpool Tower and also included information on Hope Jones). It did not conentrate on one person, one organ, one type of music, it covered the lot, and a very good set of programmes it was too!!
Also, how do you know people didn't switch off their sets anymore than I know they did?? Just a thought. Maybe you have access to information I don't?
Hi!It's great to see such a spirited and lively debate! Interestingly however, the situation in France is particularly different and possibly it depends upon how exciting the instrument is on which concerts are performed. During August recitals at Albi the cathedral is so packed that they have to turn people away at the door. St Maximin recitals are pretty full as also are those at L'Escarene on the salt route up to Italy behind Nice.And all this with classical music even if it does include Charles-Alexandre Fessy (1804-1856) requiring the tremulant on the 1791 instrument and making it sound like a Wurlitzer . . . It may be that those who consider that only Wurlitzers draw the crowds might usefully take a peek at what's happening on the Continent, which is very different. To some extent it depends on the charisma of the organist and how well the instrument can aspire to the title of King.Best wishesDavid PBest wishesDavid P
PCND, I'm listening to that Cowan recording of the Willan as I write. It's difficult to form any impressions, as the 240p Youtube compressed audio has killed whatever reverb the room may have and likely the upper harmonics of the organ, so it all sounds a bit thick and flat, like a recording from a long time ago (coincidentally, it reminds me of Whitlock's recordings of the Parkstone Compton). However, it certainly proves the point that these are capable concert instruments and I would hope that more people play theatre organs 'straight', as it would, I suspect, win the theatre organ more fans from within the sometimes snobbish world of the 'classical' organ, as well as from the wider classical music world.
If I'm honest, the cinema organ sounds I'm hearing are scarcely any worse than the Father Willis at Ewell with its Vox Humana and tremulant! I think Cowan could have laid off the tinkly percussion, but that's just personal taste. What I'd like to know is where Hope-Jones learned to voice - apparently his Tubas are very much like those of Fr Willis.
§ This term is both context-dependent and somewhat volatile. For the purpose of this post, I regard Poland as belonging to Central Southern Europe.[/font]
Other countries in Europe seem more willing to embrace other types of music than we do here in the UK! If it doesn't blast your brains out for the vast majority of youngsters and some well into theit 40's and 50's, forget it!Back to the Howard Goodall bit, I was still at School when that was on and I remember mentioning it to quite a few friends who to the mick, I wonder if they would watch it now, however?
As for what to call 'classical' music when it's not just classical, I think this is a problem we've been wrestling with for centuries! Um... intellectual? Oh, and note to moderators - DON'T NICK MY IDEA! IT'S MINE AND SO'S THAT CD IF I WIN!
Quote from: pcnd5584 on July 22, 2011, 11:48:09 PM§ This term is both context-dependent and somewhat volatile. For the purpose of this post, I regard Poland as belonging to Central Southern Europe.[/font]Um. Yes! Poland Southern? Perhaps south of Hamburg . . . :-)
Other countries in Europe seem more willing to embrace other types of music than we do here in the UK! If it doesn't blast your brains out for the vast majority of youngsters and some well into theit 40's and 50's, forget it!Back to the Howard Goodall bit, I was still at School when that was on and I remember mentioning it to quite a few friends who to the mick, I wonder if they would watch it now, however?Indeed - times do change. Look at Helen Mirren....
At the opening of the HNB/Schantz at Melbourne Town Hall by Thomas Heywood, the hall was packed to its 2200ish capacity, with a further 650-odd having to be turned away. That's how popular it was. An awful lot of people I know listen to and watch the Proms - one of them is a proper Saf Lunnun-spoken builder, shaven-headed, five feet wide by seven feet tall and with an accent you could cut through stone with, but nevertheless he watched the entirety of the 1st Night on the television - when a completely ornery builder is raving about Janacek's Glagolitic Mass, you know you're getting somewhere. He has now vowed one way or another to catch every Prom in the season, on the TV, radio and listening back on the iPlayer and is talking about buying tickets for a few next year, bringing his son and wife, even his mates and colleagues (who, as it is, are given regular updates on his meteoric progress on the piano and are often made to listen to him playing in exchange for beers and curries). Just goes to show that dumbing down to appeal to the masses can often backfire.
Quote from: comptonplus on July 22, 2011, 09:17:29 PM... If it is to be a TV Documentary, the man in the street will see Church/Classical organ and turn off immediately, but if you see a man in a white suit popping up out of the floor, I think it's more likely he will leave the TV on, even if for a split second to laugh at it! :-)In fact, this was apparently not the case with either The King of Instruments (featuring Gillian Weir) or Howard Goodall's Organ Works.