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Topics - David Pinnegar

Pages: 1 2 [3] 4 5 ... 23
Theme :
Unwanted Organs - what is their future ?

Venue : St Stephen’s church, Rosslyn Hill, Hampstead, 5 minutes’ walk from
either Belsize Park Underground station (Northern Line, Edgware branch) or
from Hampstead Heath Overground station (Richmond-Stratford section)

Date : Saturday 23 September 2017, doors open at 10 a.m.

Aims of conference :

- To see what systems are currently in place in the various ‘exempt
denominations’ to safeguard organs, and how well these systems are

- To share good and bad experiences,
- and to see if, in the new era of Sustainability, organs can be better protected.

- To discuss how they might be maintained in playing condition
- and to see how they might be used more widely for cultural purposes and teaching.

- To explore what might be done with good organs that need to be moved – do they really have to go abroad ? What organs need to be kept in the UK ‘at all costs’, and what systems are in place to achieve this aim ?

Chair : Peter Burman

Special guest : Judith Weir

Composer-in- residence : David Loxley-Blount ; a new piece by him will be premièred

Organ players : Timothy Roberts, Paul Nicholson

Films about ‘unwanted organs’ specially made by James Dawson

There is no charge for the conference, but conference registration and tickets for the ‘Pipes and Strings’ concert will need to be booked via the link on the web-site. (See below for more details.)

Proposed programme for the day :

Open 10 am ;  tea & coffee

1st session starts at 10.30 with introductions from the Chair and Martin Renshaw. We then will hear up to 8 representatives, including those from the five English exempt denominations, the Churches ConservationTrust and the

Church Commissioners. They will speak about their advisory systems and their engagement with the safeguarding of organs for about 10 minutes each.

Lunch from 1 – 2.30 (sandwiches, soup, cake, fruit, tea/coffee) with live music and films, posters, power point shows etc

2nd session 2.30 – 4 : round-table and open discussion : Where do we go from here ?  How can systems be improved and will denominations work together ? What impact will there be from ‘sustainability’ issues?

4-4.30 : tea and entry of those coming just for the concert

4.30-6 : ‘Pipes and Strings’ : a concert to include music by Purcell and Bach, with organ concertos by Mozart, John Stanley, JohnWorgan and others, and the première of a new composition by David Loxley-Blount.

Organ player : Tim Roberts

String players : Conor James Gricmanis, James Orrell, Hatty Haynes and Bill Hunt

Organs : formerly unwanted organs of 1750, c1790 and 1829

The concert ticket will include a choice wine reception at 6 pm, the wine coming from places where English organs have gone to, or soft drinks.

Booking will need to be made through the soundsmedieval web-site for the conference (10 am to 4 pm) and concert (4 to 6). Please register in advance through this site, even though entry to the conference itself (10 am – 4 pm) is free. We are asking for a £10 donation on the day towards conference tea, coffee and lunch. Concert entry (and drinks) will be £10 if booked in advance through the web-site, or £12 on the door. Full-time student concert advance tickets are £8 ; the concert will be free for children who are 12 and under if accompanied by a responsible adult (maximum 2 children per adult).

Miscellaneous & Suggestions / Is nothing going on in Organdom?
« on: July 11, 2017, 06:50:08 PM »
Has social media made this forum wholly redundant?

Best wishes

David P

Inspirational instruments / The Metzler at Trinity College Cambridge
« on: June 08, 2017, 08:39:06 PM »
It's a real pleasure to hear Radio 3 devoting time to an organ recital - and with David Goode playing Bach on the Metzler at Trinity there's real inspiration.

The history of the instrument is on

I saw reference to its "idiosyncratic" tuning and this was music to my ears. Bach really comes alive on the Metzler and relates that it's tuned to Werkmeister. If only more instruments were tuned to systems with perfect fifths . . .

Best wishes

David P

RCO Academy invites you to
join us in Worcester
in the Georgian tranquillity of St Swithun’s Church for
cantantibus organis
exploring the unique musical landscape of the late mediaeval organ
FRIDAY 16 JUNE at 2.30pm
St Swithun’s Church, Worcester WR1 2RH
Goldman Professor in Organ, Arizona State University
Kimberly will coach organists of all ages in repertoire of the English pre-Reformation:
apply to play in Kimberly’s masterclass (five places available for organists of all ages)
apply to observe
(concessions for RCO Members)

It was a great pleasure a few weeks ago to be the guest of Robert Buhagiar, the organ builder on Malta and Gozo. I'd imagine that few can have curatorship of more historic instruments than he and the two islands are a gem in the organ world.

On I recorded the sound of one of the ancient instruments of 1769, at Hal Ghaxaq.

We went to see another instrument at Qrendi and this was extraordinary, the sound becoming more grand and more profound as more of the upper Ripieno was added. I imagine that the Ripieno harmonics produce beat frequencies as sub-harmonics, creating a very grand sound.

Best wishes

David P

It's amazing how in England the pipe organ seems to be losing relevance whilst in France there are mouth-watering instruments from top to bottom of the country.

In Cannes

Notre Dame de Bon-Voyage

and up north

and nearby a Cavaillé Coll

an English instrument by Alfred Oldknow

At Pleurtuit

and a Nicholson and Lord at St Briac

What do we need to breathe such life into organs in England?

Best wishes

David P

Miscellaneous & Suggestions / Is this forum dead? Is the organ dead?
« on: February 14, 2017, 08:21:12 PM »
Is there any point in the existence of this forum?



Forster & Andrews, Hull (1877)
Re-built by Hill & Sons, London (1906)
Hailsham Parish Church (St Mary’s)
East Sussex
BN27 1BL

NPOR N15407
Three manual and pedals
30 speaking stops
Action: Tubular pneumatic throughout

En-fenêtre front: Width (overall) 14’7”
Height (top of pipes) 19’8”
The organ now has no side casework as it is built
into the base of the tower. It occupies a floor area
approximately 12’9” wide x 14’9” deep.

Originally with tracker action, it was built in 1877
for the concert hall at the Royal Normal College for
the Blind at Upper Norwood in South London. In
1906 it was completely rebuilt by Hill & Sons and
converted to tubular pneumatic action. At this time
the console was replaced. It was extensively
refurbished again by Hill & Sons in 1921.

The college was evacuated soon after the outbreak
of war, and sometime between 1939 and 1944 the
organ was placed into storage by Willis & Sons. It
was installed at Hailsham in 1955 by Hill, Norman
and Beard of Lewes. This installation necessitated
major alterations, and the side casework shown in
early photographs is no longer in existence.

The organ retains its original stencilled display
pipes, and some other original Forster & Andrews
ranks. Other ranks are by Hill & Sons.

The Swell and Great are in reasonable playing order
and the organ is regularly used. Some minor repairs
have been carried out recently, although the last
major overhaul took place in 1981.

Organ for Possible Relocation

Department and Stop List

Pedal Key action TP Stop action TP Compass-low C Compass-high f1 Keys 30
1 Open Diapason 16
2 Bourdon 16
3 Quint 12
4 Flute 8
5 Trombone 16

Great Key action TP Stop action TP Compass-low C Compass-high a3 Keys 58
6 Contra Geigen 16
7 Open Diapason 8
8 Hohl Flute 8
9 Gamba 8
10 Harmonic Flute 4
11 Principal 4
12 Fifteenth 2
13 Mixture
14 Harmonic Tromba 8

Swell Key action TP Stop action TP Compass-low C Compass-high a3 Keys 58
24 Violoncello 8
25 Dulciana 8
26 Lieblich Gedeckt 8
27 Flauto Traverso 4
28 Flautina 2
29 Orchestral Oboe 8
30 Harmonic Tromba (from Great) 8
31 Corno di Bassetto 8

Choir Key action TP Stop action TP Compass-low C Compass-high a3 Keys 58
15 Bourdon 16
16 Open Diapason 8
17 Rohr Flute 8
18 Salicional 8
19 Voix Celeste 8
20 Principal 4
21 Harmonic Piccolo 2
22 Horn 8
23 Oboe 8

Other details
Console type: En-fenêtre
Stop type: Drawstop
Pedalboard: Concave Radiating

Swell to Pedal
Swell to Great
Swell to Choir
Swell octave
Choir to Great
Choir to Pedal
Choir suboctave
Great to Pedal
Balanced swell pedal for Swell
Balance swell pedal for Choir
4 thumb pistons to Great (also on toe studs)
4 thumb pistons to Swell (also on toe studs)
4 thumb pistons to Choir

Blowing: Electric (3-phase)

Location and access
The organ is located at ground level at the
base of the tower immediately behind the
west doors as shown in the photograph.

There is therefore good level access directly
from the outside of the building, although
the space within the tower is very cramped.

The alterations made to the organ when it
was installed included mounting some of
the ranks and some larger isolated pipes
directly onto the walls of the tower.

The blower is located within the bellringing
chamber directly above the organ,
and suitable lifting equipment will be
required to remove it.
Background and timescales

In its current location, in the base of the tower, the organ prevents the historic west doors and
foyer (prior to 1955, a main entrance to the church) from being used. Consequently, the south
door, which is accessed via steps and is therefore far from satisfactory, has to be used as the
main entrance. Furthermore, the west doors, which are on the main approach path and are visible
from the High Street, present a gaunt and unwelcoming prospect, giving the appearance that
church itself may be redundant.

The Parochial Church Council is in discussion with the Chichester Diocesan Advisory
Committee about reordering works that would bring the west doors back into use as the main
entrance, and which due to levels, can provide full access for disabled people. The relocation of
the organ to a new home will be a necessary consequence if approval is granted for these works.

Expressions of interest will therefore be welcome, although the organ’s availability is subject to
faculty permission being obtained from the Chancellor of the Diocese. An application is
currently being prepared.

Please contact us for more information about the organ and its fascinating history, including its
early years at the Royal Normal College for the Blind. Proposals to re-use the remaining
substantial “en fenêtre” casework may also be considered.

While no charge will be made for the organ, the recipient will be responsible for all costs
involved in dismantling and removal.

Enquiries please to:
Ken Thomas
Telephone: 01323 849699 / 07817 560077

Organs in danger / Slow death
« on: January 31, 2017, 07:17:41 PM »
Is it the Organ as an instrument, Churches in which organs are kept or this forum which is dead?

Slow death is painful.

Best wishes

David P

Inspirational instruments / Portable pipe organ
« on: January 25, 2017, 11:43:16 AM » might be one of the most extraordinary creations in the organ world.

Best wishes

David P

The local Association sent around an appeal for a midnight organist. I don't know if the church found one but I wonder how many churches missed having the organ as part of Christmas?

Best wishes

David P

Organ Music and Repertoire / Denis Bedard
« on: November 12, 2016, 10:14:39 AM »
Interesting email from Allegro Music today:
Denis Bedard
We have always been asked for the music of Canadian organist and composer Denis Bedard and until recently it has been difficult to obtain, the only option being direct ordering from Canada. However now Cheldar publications have a dedicated UK agent and we are delighted to have all the organ titles listed on our website! The first link below takes you to the Denis Bedard pages to browse through but we also list below a few highlights:

Bedard Pages Link:

Fantaisie on Ein feste burg
Price £8.00

Huit Invocations
Price £8.00

Organ Music for Christmas
Price £12.95

Pater Noster (8 Pieces)
Price £10.00

Prelude & Toccata on Victimae Paschali
Price £5.50

Six Paraphrase Gregoriennes
Price £8.00

Suite de Concert
Price £8.00

Variations on In Dulci Jubilo
Price £6.50
Variations on Amazing Grace
Price £6.50

Denis Bedard Organ Music Vol.1 (contents on website)
Price £25.00

Denis Bedard Organ Music Vol.2 (contents on website)
Price £25.00

But do have a look at all the Denis Bedard pages as there are many more to choose from!

Old favourites available once more!
Quite often there is a really popular piece that goes out of print or the copyright is lost from the original publisher. But in some cases all is not lost and here are some real gems that are available again:

Garth Edmundson - Toccata on Vom Himmel Hoch (ideal for Christmas)
Price £3.95

Walter Alcock - Introduction & Passacaglia
Price £6.60

Patrick Gowers - An Occasional Trumpet Voluntary
Price £4.50

Lemare - Andantino in D flat
Price £4.40

Robin Milford - Three Christmas Pieces
Price £5.90

Brand New from Fitzjohn!
The latest publication from Fitzjohn publications is another piece by William Wolstenholme:
Wolstenholme - Scherzo in F
Price £6.00

Finally, don’t forget our special offer on “Carols for Choirs”!
Until the end of November, we are offering OUP’s “Carols for Choirs” volumes at a discount. Just click on “Advanced Search” and put Carols for Choirs into the title field and that should take you straight to the whole series.

And don’t forget new and recently published titles in our “Hot off the Press” section. Just click on the box to the right hand side of the home page.

Allegro Music

Redundant Pipe Organ                                                         M0189
Kirtland & Jardine? c.1857
Worsley Methodist Church, Manchester UK
Barton Rd Manchester M28 2GX    SD 750 001
NPOR  D00309
2 manuals and pedals
11 speaking stops
Tracker action to manuals
Tubular Pneumatic action to pedals
Mechanical stop action
Compass          56/30
Width  c.10ft
Depth  c.10ft
Height c.14ft
There is uncertainty over the original builder. But it is likely that Kirtland & Jardine, Conacher and Jardine were all part of its history.
An 1830-50 case and a chalked “1857 Ogden” point to an old instrument. The brass plate screwed above the music desk records “F W Jardine. Manchester” and a cast bellows weight with “J Co.” accords with a BOA Archive revealing a 2 manual 12 (sic) stop organ made for this church by Jardine in 1904.
The pedal rank, mounted at the rear, extends in wings to each side of the main case in a way that suggests the organ was brought to the church from elsewhere.
The instrument hasn’t been used for more than 20 years and has deteriorated in that time. The reservoir leather is rotten and the twin inverted fold, double rise bellows do not rise. However, its singing tone was remarked upon in better days when the organ amply filled the chapel with attractive sound. It is possible to get some response from it now, revealing an unforced and blending tone.
The Great Stopped Diapason has a mild chiff, and the silvery tones of the Swell Flautina are appealing.
Open Diapason           8
Stopped Diap. Bass    8
Stopped Diap. Treb     8
Dulciana                      8
Principal                      4
Rohr Gedact               8
Gamba                         8
Voix Celeste               8
Hohl Flute                   4
Flautina                       2
Bourdon                      16
Swell to Great
Swell Octave to Great
Swell to Pedals
Great to Pedals
Blower stop – alerted the hand-blowing operator
2 composition pedals to Great
2 composition pedals to Swell
Balanced swell pedal
The drawstops and their layout are an unaltered unit, all of a piece, and includes a Blower stop (to signal the blower operator by knocking on a side case panel.) The stops are in square jambs and the Gothic stop head scripts are in black with red capitals.
The pedalboard, parallel and flat, appears to have replaced an earlier one, and a balanced swell pedal has been fitted.
Electric blower.
Hand pump handle and fitting, with feeder bellows, are still in place.
Metal pipes are slide tuned.
Chromatic soundboards.
Most of the display pipe flats are dummies; only the middle five pipes speak.
The organ is sited in the gallery at the east end of the building, and is reported to speak well into the church, and amply led the singing.
This organ is eminently worthy of restoration.
Enquiries about the organ from interested parties should be made to the church contact.
Buyer makes all arrangements for dismantling, packing and transport.
Care has been taken to provide accurate information but the seller is not responsible for errors.
Photographs of the interior are available on request to the sender (Graham Jones,
The building, with organ, has been sold and is in the hands of an estate agent (See Contact below).

Atheists' Corner / What is Atheism?
« on: October 04, 2016, 11:11:27 AM »
As churches continue to be seen to be redundant and the spirit of God fades to the invisible in consciousness a quotation from Richard Feynmann, one of the most important of 20th century physicists becomes relevant -
For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled. 

What can the Creator be if we cannot see it in Nature? Or can we?

Should we reapply the quotation as
"For a successful theoology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled.   "

Can we recognise any form of Creator in Nature in any manner or means?

Best wishes

David P

Electronic Organs / Wanted - any Johannus control board with 88C25 chips
« on: September 26, 2016, 05:24:53 PM »

My instrument is somewhat desperate for some donor 88C25 chips. Something odd has gone wrong with stop control and capture so it's a case of trying one thing and another. Possibly the EEPROM has failed, which is nasty, as then we're reliant on being able to clone the program from another Johannus MD339 compatible instrument . . .

Best wishes

David P

Faith, Religion, Ritual and Consciousness / About God
« on: August 30, 2016, 07:11:00 AM »

It's a pleasure to write and I hope that what I write about God being a process rather than a person is helpful. It is a process that leads to an intelligence, and thus in which we recognise a person. But it is more than a person.

God is the Creator

This is an abstract understanding.

Whatever the Creator is, it creates, is invisible, all powerful and everywhere. That's all we know about God.

Everything is created.

The process is from fundamental particles to proteins, DNA, species, people, interactions of people. We are made of the stuff that has come about because of the process. We are made in its image but we forget what we're made of. Our interactions can obey the process and then we echo the process and become sons and daughters of the process. Jesus said it - "Who are my Mother and my Brothers?" (or Sister and Brothers) - Those who hear my Father's words and do it. This is in four of the five Gospels. I count Thomas among them. Thomas is very difficult and I cannot understand it. But it gives us wisdom. It's the clue to the esoteric understanding of this abstraction which is God.

The holy spirit is of course the idea in the nature of the spirit of the law rather than the letter of the law.

We act in the image of the process when we understand the creator and take upon ourselves the work of that creator idea. Then having looked in the glass darkly we see face to face. We take upon ourselves the creator consciousness rather than the instinctive consciousness.

In this understanding we can create more.

For many religion is at the level of the schoolboy. "Master Master I love you so much and I know that you love me so much. So I know that I can rely on you if I ask you. Master Master please can you do my homework for me?"

And so by worship of Master rather than understanding what Master is telling us we have our heroes which we venerate, call by name and then create fights in the playground. This is the problem with both Christianity and Islam.

The doll is so interesting as it accesses our image. It does not move unless in the image of our actions.

I have just written to a lady grieving for her son.

The Big Daddy in the sky hasn't done her homework that she's asked Him to do.

Hi run to Jamaica to hide away from my pain, and all I find is the people being as painful and horrible as death.
Death is selfish, death is unkind.death care for no one.
To date I think I would be healing, but this pain I am feeling now is as raw as the pain I felt then.
I kept asking myself will this pain ever will go away, that question is like a song playing over and over in my head.
Will I ever find my happy place ! Is there a happy place? How can you find happiness amongst all this pain.
as a person who did counselling I thought maybe it will help, today I know nothing helps.
Talking about your pain sud it for a while, so what really helps?
Going to sleep I wake up crying.
I walk around  shouting for help, but then I relize no one can hear me as it's only in my head.
Today my pain felt as new as yesterday.
Does this issue of death ever solve ???????
Believe me I am trying to move on but my pain won't allow  me?
I am asking you these questions because, I want to know how was it for you?

I'm so distressed to feel your pain.

The answer can only be in the God of Life, for whom there is no death and to which death is irrelevant. Death does not create. It is of no concern to the Creator.

You recall His name? Yahweh?

Revered, unsaid, sacred, hallowed is His name. Because saying the Name you destroy it.

What is it?

Find a quiet place.

Imagine you've died. Imagine you've been resuscitated from the dead. Draw in that breath. Exhale it. You will hear the sound. Sacred is that sound, the Breath of Life.

It is the breath of life to your body. But in understanding it is the breath of life to your soul, your mind. Upon that new first breath you are reborn.

Love from all and from the living,

- - - - -

Hermes Tremegistus referred to the cosmos as being the mind of God and also self fertilising.

This is contained in our nativity narrative. The Virgin Mary and the flight to Egypt - which is an indication of source - not of Jesus physical infancy but from where his start was. This was why 18th century elite searched Egypt for the Coptic texts.

The intelligence of the created stuff in the universe displays an intelligence. This is the mind of God. All is connected and interrelated.

Three quarks come together to make a proton. Because they make a proton the protons can tame electrons to make an atom. At every level stuff that is less useful works together to make something more useful than the component bits alone.

That's the process.

If it can happen, it will happen, and what results depends on how much it creates. Parable of talents. Parable of sower. Quantum physics.

When we operate it in our relationships between people and between us and all created things, then we too create.

The result is that the only difference between me and the simpler personified view is whether the intelligence which we call God is internal and self fertilising to the universe or whether it is external.

In recognition of the internal we encompass quantum physics, statistical mechanics, chemical engineering and competitive biological processes, Buddhism, the Mosaic understandings, the component parts of Hindu, and we start to be able to create understanding and peace between all. Then we operate the process and act in its echo.

If you're interested I've written a lot on

The Lord's prayer is key to the creation of Heaven in Earth - in our Earthly activity. Heaven is not the place in the sky other than the place where subatomic reactions operating the process create stars and planets, thus Sun worship as the Son, nor is it the place we go when we are bones in the ground. It's paradise where we came from which we know in our minds. We bring that place, that process, as our will and our kingdom on earth.

I wrote about the waters breaking. We wander the desert for forty years fed by god food dripping from heaven. You find it best in early morning dreams. After forty years fed by creator food you end up in the land of milk and honey. It's not a place in earth from which to evict others from their land and their homes.

Best wishes

David P

Alexandra Kremakova - 4pm - 29th August - Hamemrwood Park East Grinstead

Louis Couperin - Suite in D minor
Courante II
La Volta

Froberger - Canzona in G major
Froberger - Toccata in A minor

Forqueray - Suite no. 7, 'Jupiter'
F. Couperin - Les Barricades Mysteriouses
Forqueray - 'La Couperin'
J. F. Fischer - 'Urania' Suite, Passacaglia
Balbastre - 'La Lugeac'

- Interval -
J.S.Bach - Partita no. 6 in e minor BWV 830

Tickets £15

Children free. Adults bringing children half price.

Please telephone 01342 850594 if you would like to come

Organ building and maintenance / Professional tools
« on: August 16, 2016, 10:32:53 AM »
Someone kindly pointed out to me a video including rather a sophisticated tuning tool . . . so I looked it up.

And on I found a lot more . . .

Best wishes


The reasons for looking to change tuning system are concerning both the physics of sound and its effect on musicality.

For many musicians nowadays music has become merely a circus act, a challenge in virtuosity, a spectacle, man versus beast, and musicians have forgotten the purpose of music as a language to convey emotion, to enable the mind to explore and to heal. Healing requires gentle caressing, and harmony not of sound but of the vibrations within sound.

Sound is made of vibrations, regular vibrations per second. Modern piano tuning does not maximise the numbers of vibrations which coincide.

The change to modern tuning was made between 1860 and 1920 when current tuning was hardened into the "equal temperament" currently used where each semitone is an exact same distance apart.

Here is an octave of keyboard notes

Because E is the third note from C, C-E when played together is a "third" and C-G, five notes apart, a "fifth". C-E, F-A, and G-B are thirds.

C to C# (C sharp) is a semitone. C to D is a tone. A tone is two semitones. The interval of the third, therefore, is made of two tones, from C-D and D-E and this is four semitones. The third from D therefore is not F, which is only three semitones - the third from D is F sharp, labelled F#. So this is why we have the five black notes. C-C is an octave.

1. Physics of sound.

The notes which are an octave apart are a doubling of frequency. So middle C in the middle of the piano keyboard might be 256 vibrations per second. The C above will then be 512 vibrations per second. An octave above that would be 1024 vibrations per second.

The organ as an instrument has stops which are pulled which allow all three pitches to be sounded from the same key, and more. The purpose of this is to make the sound richer.

All sound in its different timbres as flavours or colours, is made of combinations of these multiples of vibrations together.

You can demonstrate this singing a note and opening your mouth to allow the extra sounds to be heard - you can see and hear on Apologies for the inexpert and very ugly sight.

When a string is struck, all these frequencies vibrate exactly together to give the tone of the string and form part of the tone of the instrument.

Let's say we have our string at 100 vibrations per second - written 100 Hz - 100 Hertz. This string giving good piano tone will produce vibrations at 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800 and more vibrations per second.

We don't have a note specifically for 100 but I am choosing this to make the mathematics easy to see.

If we hold the note down for say 100Hz in the bass and we strike the notes for 200, 400 and 800 (an octave above, two octaves, three octaves and four octaves) then these tones will excite and resonate the bass string and the sound will continue to be heard in the bass string even when the upper note stops sounding. This is demonstrated on where you can hear this effect.

What is interesting is that when we play two notes together, such as 500 and 600 vibrations per second, 100 times per second the vibrations of the two coincide. So the bass note is synthesized as if sounding, without actually being played, a resulting or resultant note. This gives tone and sonority to the instrument and builds the sound.

What becomes interesting also is when we sound together combinations such as 200 and 300 together. We then synthesize the resultant note 100. But the 200 string vibrates with harmonics
200 400 800 1000 1200
and the 300 string vibrates with the harmonics
300 600 900 1200
so we find that the frequency of 1200 is reinforced and adds to the sound as an extra note.

If we sound 500 with this then we add the series
500 1000 1500
so we find 1000 as well as 1200 as well as 100 is added. So the tone of the sound of the instrument becomes reinforced all the more.

The problem with modern piano tuning is that the 300 500 600 700 frequencies are nowhere tuned close enough to the perfect harmonic to add reliably except in a jangling way.

In fact as musicians we have experienced a shimmering to the sound and then we say "what a wonderful piano" - but it has ceased to convey the music as intended nor the emotion.

2. Musically this has reduced the dimensions in which the music can speak, reducing them to
a. loud versus soft
b. slow versus fast
c. discordant versus harmonious

Have you read George Orwell 1984? The new language NEWSPEAK reduced the number of words to 300 so that people were limited in their language to think. This reduction of dimension in music has done the same in music.

3. The meaning of "Chromatic"

As musicians we have been bamboozled into thinking that the chromatic scale is simply going up each note by semitones C C# D D# E F F# G G# A A# B C.

We have forgotten what the language means.

Photographers who are old enough took photographs as transparencies for projection on film called . . . KodaCHROME EctaCHROME FujiCHROME and our lenses are CHROMATICally corrected - which means that on the edges of things in our image we don't see fringes of a spectrum of colours.

In the modern tuned instrument there is no hint of anything that we can call CHROMATIC demonstrating a spectrum of sound.

4. The solution.

The tuning that I use exploits lots of perfect fifths in the exact ratios of 200:300. This brings many thirds in the ratios 500:400 very near to exact and exact enough to resonate, without making other thirds unpleasantly too far from perfect. This is enough to give back the spectrum of colour to the chromatic scale and to chromatic music as exploited in particular by Haydn, Mozart, Beetoven, Schubert, Chopin and Liszt whilst not doing damage to the music of later composers.

The spectrum of sound that we hear is demonstrated on

The differences of sounds create a reward to the musician for playing sensitively and reacting to the different sounds differently as intended to be heard by the classical composers moulding the sound shapes in the phrasing of the music, conveying meanings unheard in modern tuning but intended to be heard.

We have a corpus of recordings, many of which are acclaimed by musicians who have heard them:

Music in "colour tuning" Bach on Harpsichord
 - see the comment Bach on piano Haydn Chopin on Steinway Boston played by Adolfo Barabino Brahms violin sonata accompanied by Barabino with Steinway Chopin 2nd sonata played by Barabino Mozart violin sonata B flat Chopin Ballade 4  Chopin 24 preludes Chopin 2nd sonata in unequal and equal temperament Chopin on Grotein Steinweg. This instrument brings to life the singing thirds. effect on melody Gershwin Debussy Benjamin Britten

Best wishes

David P

Part-time Project Manager, All Saints, Worcester

A part time Project Manager is required by All Saints church Worcester to oversee and facilitate the tasks and objectives as set out in their successful HLF grant bid for essential stone and roof repairs to their grade II listed church.

The technical and operational building works will be overseen by specialist architects and will not form part of the role of this post.

For a full job description and application pack, please send a request email to

Application Closing Date 22/08/2016
You can find out more about the church here

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