Saturday, December 1, 2012

Monaco: Cathedral, an organ history

Earlier in the fall I learned that Monaco has released a stamp celebrating a new organ in the cathedral. I have been doing a bit of research to determine the history of organs in the cathedral. I found this site and used google translator to get a (rough) interpretation of the history. As one expects with cathedrals, the organ's lineage is complex.

Located in the stands above the entrance gate, the Grand current organ was built in 1975 and inaugurated by Pierre Cochereau holder of the great organ of Notre-Dame de Paris from 1955 to 1984.
On the occasion of the restoration of the great organ in 1988, its proprietor, René Saorgin in Church of Monaco (January 1989, and this instrument and its history:

"The first instrument platform was probably installed in the Cathedral around 1887 soon after its completion. Featuring eleven games only, it is not enough to fill the vast and lofty nave of the Cathedral. It was sold to the Church of the Cordeliers Gap city where you can still admire the neo-gothic elegant buffet.

A great instrument was then fifty games built in its place by the factor Charles Martin, the successor of the famous Cavaillé-Coll, author of the organ of Notre-Dame de Paris.
One signed Cavaillé-Coll instrument remains in the new Carmelite church in Monaco. It was opened April 8, 1922 by Master Emile Bourdon, a direct disciple of Louis Vierne, who remained the owner until 1968 ...
This organ was donated by a patron, more composer Jean Bartholini, Consul of Monaco in Geneva.

The organ Mutin was placed on each side of the rostrum, in the bottom of triforiums.
He got very ill from the nave, but the organist was placed almost in the middle of the pipe, he had a magnificent sound ... The reeds had a stamp incisive, biting, even terrifying. Funds were beautifully mellow and sang beautifully. Everything does not lack nobility and greatness and fitted well in the tradition of the great symphony orchestras of the time.
Various upgrades, expansion and electrification started in 1951 by Maurice Puget factor, Toulouse, did not improve the instrument "too altered, concealed evil age" (Carol H.).

The Princely Government therefore decided to build a new instrument and addressed it to Jean-Loup Boisseau, Poitiers.
This factor realized the current instrument has sixty games over four manuals and pedal. It was inaugurated on 10 October 1976 by Pierre Cochereau (cf. Church of Monaco, November 1976).
Designed in the classical French style, this "Grand sixteen feet" includes all syntheses and games to bring own solo classical French literature.
"Grand Plein-Jeu" glittering with desire, dynamic and nervous, is quite exceptional. The "Great Game (chorus reeds) is positively glowing in the purest French tradition. Few elements foreign to the French classical aesthetics (whistle, flute harmonic unda husbands dulcian) allow to address a different directory but without turning to the organ as an instrument of synthesis.
Unfortunately, the mechanical parts (chests, prints notes and records, tanks) suffered greatly in recent years.
Consists of various materials: wood, metal, leather, felt, skin, organ, more than any other instrument, is very sensitive to temperature changes and humidity especially ...
A major restoration work was then entrusted to the House Tamburini, Crema (Italy).

This restoration was carried out with care and remarkable art.
Today the 4840 pipes of the great organ of the Cathedral of Monaco sing again and the faithful in each réentendent ceremony at the Cathedral, the splendid harmony Jean-Loup Boisseau had given them.
Several improvements have been made: adding a drone sixteen feet keyboard story, adding a trumpet and cornet separation ranks fourth keyboard, adding a second bugle to the pedal, installation of a series of twelve combinations adjustable facilitating the organist play. "

After 18 months of work, the end of the restoration of this instrument rejuvenated, which honors the Principality and is probably the best and most successful of the Côte d'Azur, was inaugurated in a ceremony presided over by Archbishop Sardou May 29, 1988 with a concert by Philippe Lefebvre, owner of the great organ of Notre-Dame de Paris.

Note that this is also the house that Tamburini was entrusted the construction of the choir organ.

I am still looking for specifications of the instrument(s) at any point in their existence. I plan to post and image of the new instrument and specification when I get a copy of the new stamps.

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