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Are all organs the same?

“Are all organs the same ……. or are some different?” (with apologies to St Mary’s Organist!)

This is the way Kevin Slingsby started his “Musical Afternoon” to a full house of 25 at the last MU meeting. He explained that all organs are different, ranging from the very small home organ to the Atlantic City organ in the USA which has seven manuals and is being restored at the moment. The organ in All Saints Church Oakham has two manuals.

Kevin showed several pictures on the screen of the various types of organ pipe, ranging from metal to wood, and demonstrated the many different sounds they make. This was given more detail by two short videos which showed “behind the scenes” of St Paul’s Cathedral (five manuals), and Peterborough.Cathedral. The organ here is gradually being retoned since it is slightly sharp. This is a long process involving the lengthening of all 5,286 pipes, with progress being reported on “Pipewatch”.

Back to Oakham where the organ will celebrate 21 years, having been dedicated in November 1995, and with an opening recital in May 1996. This will be celebrated by a recital on Monday 26th September this year with a recital given by James Lancelot from Durham Cathedral. Kevin’s interesting talk was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

The next MU monthly meeting will be on Thursday March 10th. This will take place in All Saints Church commencing at 2.15 and will open with a service of Holy Communion celebrated by Canon Julie Hutchinson, followed by a talk by Julie. All are welcome.