News Archive: 2003
This is an archive of news articles from 2003. Current news articles can be found here and an archive index can be found here. Information in this archive may no longer be valid.
- John Scott to move to New York
John Scott, who has served as organist and director of music at St. Paul's Cathedral, London for thirteen years will be moving to New York in September 2004. He will succeed Gerre Hancock as organist and director of music at St. Thomas's, Fifth Avenue. For more details, see the web sites of St. Paul's Cathedral and St. Thomas's Church.
- BIOS Journal 2003 published
The Journal of the British Institute of Organ Studies, volume 27, has just been published. Its emphasis this year moves from the instrument to its music, with scholarly articles on revising Bach's canon of work, Couperin's organ masses, and more, alongside articles such as the adoption of Equal Temperament and an unexpectedly interesting look at tenders for some Islington organs. For more information, see the BIOS web site.
- Dirk Flentrop, 1910 - 2003
One of the most influential organ builders of the 20th century, Dirk Andries Flentrop died recently at the age of 93. He took over the Dutch business his father had founded, and during his time as director was responsible for over 250 distinctive new instruments at home and abroad. He also oversaw over 100 restorations, many with a respect for existing material unusual for the time. More details can be found on Flentrop's web site.
Matthew Copley announces new commission
Matthew Copley Organ Design has announced a commission to build a new sixty stop instrument for St. Mary's Metropolitan Roman Catholic Cathedral, Edinburgh. The proposed design is pictured right, and includes a full length 32' diapason in the faade. More details will be in February's edition of The Organ.
- New website for the Early English Organ Project
The Early English Organ Project aims to rediscover the sound of Sixteenth century English organs with the aid of their two Goetze and Gwynn organs. These are recent reconstructions based on surviving parts of sixteenth century organs. The new website includes detailed descriptions of the motives behind the project and the way in which the organs were reconstructed from the fragmentary evidence at hand, as well as listing opportunities to hear the instruments in person.
- Two fine three manual organs looking for new homes
By coincidence, two fine English three manual organs are looking for new homes owing to the closure of their buildings. The first is an unaltered circa 1900 Norman and Beard of 25 stops, currently in Cradeley Heath Methodist Church, Birmingham, in excellent condition, and available free of charge to any church. Interested parties should contact organist Paul Carr at "pcarr AT highgate.dudley.gov.uk". The second is the 1907 Hunter currently in Beckenham URC (specification available in the NPOR, index N14193). Restored by Willis in 1924 and well maintained since, it has a comprehensive romantic specification over 43 stops. Anyone seriously interested in the complete organ (including a fine case) should contact Paul Joslin on 0208 459 5547.
- Scottish organs on the move
The "new" organ for the Cathedral of the Isles in Millport is due back on Cumbrae shortly, after restoration at Wood of Huddersfield. More details when we have them. Meanwhile, the trusty three-rank Compton extension instrument it replaces has found a new home on another island, with the congregation of St. Columba at Bridgend, Islay, and will be travelling there shortly.
- The Tracker gets a new editor
Agnes Armstrong, American concert organist and organ historian, has been appointed as editor of The Tracker, journal of the US-based Organ Historical Society. Writers and researchers in the area of organ history, particularly American but not exclusively, are invited to contact her with article ideas. The OHS has a website at www.organsociety.org.
- Three new GOArt publications
GOArt (the Gotherburg Organ Art project) has just published three new additions to its catalogue, all available directly from GOArt, or for American customers, via the OHS. The Nordic-Baltic Organ Book details 54 historical organs around Scandinavia and the Baltic. The North German Organ Research Project at Gteborg University publication examines the detailed research behind this recent historical recreation, and Volume 3 of the GOArt Research Reports covers everything from "Dieterich Buxtehude and the Chorale Fantasia" to Cavaill-Coll's Pokilorgue.
- Organ Building 2003 published
The annual journal of the Institute of British Organ Building has just been published. Articles include an overview of the year's projects, more detailed descriptions of fourteen different pipe organs, and technical discussion. For more details or to order, visit the IBO website.
- News from British organbuilders
The four manual Wadsworth organ rebuilt by Willis was opened earlier this month in a sold-out recital by Olivier Latry. Details and a specification are in the issue 325 of The Organ (page 66), but a good photograph of the new case, designed by Stephen Bicknell, can be found on Willis's news page.
Meanwhile, Harrison and Harrison held a successful open day on the 20th and have posted some pictures on their website here. Further from home, Mander's continuo organ for the Australian Brandenburg orchestra, as seen at St. Albans, has arrived down under, to be followed next year by a larger organ for Sydney Grammar School. Details on Mander's news page.
- Royal Festival Hall Organ 50th birthday celebrations
On Tuesday 23rd March, 2004, a Gala Concert will be held with four organists and four orchestral works featuring the organ. More details can be found on our events section, and the 2003/2004 season features a welcome return of the RFH talks at 6:15pm preceding each concert in the series. February's features composer Stephen Montague, whose work Toccata is premiered that night, and before the Gala Concert, Colm Carey performs with a Deaf Choir. More information on the series is on the RFH website.
- Eastman visit Gothenburg
A website detailing a trip by Eastman organ students to the GOArt centre in Gothenburg earlier this year may not seem worthy of a news item, but this website features an illustrated diary with recordings of the various organs, and is well worth a visit at
- New website on French and Belgian organs
A new website has been launched by French and Belgian cultural authorities to celebrate their shared organ heritage. Many significant composers and organ-builders are featured, along with a large number of instruments with pictures and sound. Well worth a visit, it can be found at www.organs.european-heritage.net.
- John Henderson's Dictionary of Composers for Organ
John Henderson writes:
Request to composers:
I am currently revising and updating my 'Directory of Composers for Organ'
in anticipation of a much enlarged third edition in 2004 or 2005. I would
like to appeal for composers of organ music to send me information about
themselves and their music, whether published or not. The WWW and e-mail
have proved to be an invaluable resource for gathering material but UK
composers in particular seem very reticent about their work in comparison
to some other nationalities, an imbalance I wish to redress !
place and date of birth (dd/mm/yy), a little biographical detail (where you
studied, your main teachers, your current academic position and church
organist post if you have them) and a full list of compositions for organ
with dates (with publishers and recordings noted where relevant). I only
list music for solo organ and for organ with other instruments, not music
for organ with voices. This can be sent by post to 30 Goddard Avenue,
Swindon SN1 4HR or preferably by e-mail to ZZZjhender@rscm.u-net.com (please remove the ZZZ spamtrap before emailing!). Many thanks in advance for your help.
Dr. John C.Henderson, Hon. Librarian, Royal School of Church Music