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Thread: How to select registration

  1. #31
    Seaman, Mezzoforte
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Hi everybody! I'm an italian organist, playing an organ of 2 manuals in a little city near Padua. The "fonic material" as we call "pipes" in Italy, came from a bigger instrument (a 4-manuals organ, made by "Veggezzi-Bossi", great organ builders in the early 1900's) laying till 1971 in a hall dedicated to Marco Enrico Bossi. I began play this organ in 1998, when I was an organ student in the "Conservatorio C. Pollini" of Padua. First, in my young studies, I hate so much his very "large" and dark sound, because I thought taht Bach and generally baroque masters, were the best and so.. I was able to love only baroque sound!!! Growing up..finishing my studies..I could see much many things: I began to play J. Bonnet, Vierne and Widor.. and since, through many registrations or mp3s, I heard the incredible "american organ sound", I began to love the instrument I still play, in a way that.. I can't stay far from it!!?!
    So.. I think that every period has had his masters and ideals, may be very different from ideals of other periods, and with these ideals.. organbuilders of each period made organs like. Every instrument has to be respected and constantly works and repaired when necessary, as a witness of a precise period in the history of music!!!
    Here in Italy, in some very little church scattered in Alps or in the South region of Italy.. there're many instruments build in the Classic period, and all of these instruments share with the others of that historical period by the presence of the first manual octave incomplete, named "ottava scavezza o in sesta".
    It's very difficult playing during the church service, and it's impossible to play a Bach's prelude or a Widor's sinphony in one organ of these, but they still works efficiently and many concerts are promoted on these instruments, with pieces of the time they belong.
    I think that's great!!!

  2. #32
    Captain of Water Music jvhldb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Ladybrand, Free State, South Africa
    How do youpick a quick registration on a strange organ? On our church organ I know exactly which stop produces what sound, which ranks to avoid when it is hot or cold and what combinations produce which sound. This morning I palyed on another organ for about ten minutes and realised that nothing sounds the same. The pedal for example had a 32' flute, our biggest pipe is a 16'. Strangely this organ had 13 registrations for the pedal (compared to our 7), but only 8 for the swell and 9 on the great. The strange organ has an 8' prestant on both the swell and great. Their trumpet is on the great, ours on the swell. Even the ranks with the same names sounded different.

    It sounds like I might be playing at more funerals in the future and won't always have time to do a "sound test" beforehand.
    Johan van Heerden

  3. #33
    Commander, Assistant Conductor
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    I have to play on several organs that are very different, and I don't think there's any quick solution to the problem of registration. My advice is to use the little time you have to find a few suitable combinations. Then write down what you've found, and when you perform, you'll have at least something to go by. The regular organist may also be able to give you some hints about what works best.


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