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English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Existing and forthcoming Hauptwerk instruments, recommendations, ...

English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby zurek » Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:57 am

The first model of an English organ by Sonus Paradisi is ready. It features William Hill English Romantic organ. The organ was built in approx. 1860-1870 by the leading organbuilding figure of the time - William Hill (1789-1871). It was built for the Burton St. Paul's church. It was moved to Berlin recently and fully restored there.

The original instrument consists of 3 manuals and a pedal, alltogether 48 sounding stops. It provides the typical resources for the Anglican liturgical use. The choice of stops provides dynamic, colorful, highly differentiated voices, yet also forming a consistent whole. Two divisions are enclosed/expressive (Choir and Swell). The organ includes the typical English high pressure Tuba, which is, indeed, Hill's invention, later becoming the landmark of the English organ.

The format is surround (6 channels). The front-direct channels can be used alone to form a semi-dry variant of the sample set, especially when releases truncated in Hauptwerk.

The sample set is offered in a plain wave format, no encryption. The virtual instrument beautifully fills a gap in the Sonus Paradisi organ portfolio, since until now, there was no English instrument available from me.

More details, including the specification and audio demo samples of the instrument may be found on the Sonus Paradisi web pages.
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby Erzahler » Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:53 am

Here is a piece played on this new sample.
http://www.contrebombarde.com/concerthall/music/31024
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby mnailor » Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:21 pm

Purchased and enjoying it!
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby RichardW » Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:31 pm

mnailor wrote:Purchased and enjoying it!


In my case: Purchased it and ...

Well, I have tried to download it directly and three files failed after five or so hours. The others failed later.

I have downloaded between 6 and 9 download managers while discounting others because they were not compatible with my version of browser. I also downloaded WinRAR to try and fix the two files that might be fixable but, although WinRAR did something the checksums don't match up.

I tried out the download managers. Some need a url and I don't know how to find that. Some worked from the right-click menu. I think they download the HTML for a login page somewhere.

I have just changed browsers and am trying again. Just one at a time.

So, I now have downloaded about 40GB of data but have nothing usable.

I wouldn't mind if I was computer illiterate but I have spent about 50 years in IT!

I may be ordering the media at some point. :(

Do I sound fed up?

EDIT: I got one!!! Yay! Just five more to go.
Last edited by RichardW on Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby murph » Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:52 pm

Downloaded all of them within Chrome on win10 with no problems.
About 10-20 mins each. (Fibre-building,cable-me, 250megs. The wifi slows it..).

Sounds nice so far.
Tuba needs regulating...
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby RichardW » Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:04 pm

murph wrote:Downloaded all of them within Chrome on win10 with no problems.
About 10-20 mins each. (Fibre-building,cable-me, 250megs. The wifi slows it..)


You're just saying that to make me feel better, aren't you?

I got one in about 20 hours! :mrgreen:

I normally use FireFox and that has failed every time. The one that worked was via Microsoft Edge. I knew it had to be good for something.
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby murph » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:24 pm

Just as a FYI: when I was on metered and used a DL manager, I found the SP site got upset if I tried more than 2 simultaneous downloads, be it one file split, or 2 files.
KISS!!!!!
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby Lougheed » Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:47 pm

I always download one file at at time.

I've never had an issue using this strategy.
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby OrganoPleno » Fri Aug 10, 2018 6:02 pm

RichardW wrote:I normally use FireFox and that has failed every time. The one that worked was via Microsoft Edge. I knew it had to be good for something.


I always use "Internet Download Manager" by Tonec Inc. Never any problems. Integrates with Firefox on Win7.
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby RichardW » Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:36 pm

OK, frustration over ...

Everything up and running now.

I had to purchase this set because the first organ I ever heard, and the one that got me interested in organ music, was the 3 manual Hill in my local parish church. Burton is only 20 miles from there. They have very similar stop lists.

So I now have something very close to the organ in my local parish church installed in my personal music room. Something I could never have imagined in the mid 1950's when I first heard it. It's amazing what that Martin Dyde chap made possible and thanks to Sonus Paradisi for recording it.

Regards,
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby IainStinson » Sat Aug 18, 2018 8:00 am

I’ve enjoyed this new sample set and was quite interested in the details and origin of the instrument. Using the UK National Pipe Organ Register (NPOR) and other web sources, I’ve looked into the history of this organ.

Briefly….

The organ was built for the new church of St Paul’s Burton upon Trent by William Hill and completed at Eastertide 1874. There were some changes from the instrument described in the Hill job book which were made before the organ was removed from St Paul’s and replaced with the first complete instrument built by the Hope Jones Electric Organ Company Ltd. The Hope-Jones instrument was housed in two beautiful cases designed by George Frederick Bodley.

The organ was removed (sold) to Trinity Methodist Church also in Burton upon Trent. It was reinstalled (presumably with its case) by Alfred Kirkland (organ builders of Wakefield and London) in 1896. Shortly afterwards it was rebuilt and extend by Kirkland.

The next major event in the organ’s life would seem to be a major rebuild carried out by Michael C Thompson, a local organ builder, in 1984. The organ was further extended and the action electrified.

When Trinity Methodist Church was to close, the organ was sold to Sankt-Afra-Kirche in the Berlin suburb of Gesundbrunnen in 2012. (Trinity Methodist Church is now a restaurant.) The organ was reinstalled largely unchanged by the Czech organ builder Rieger-Kloss Organ Building, Krnov.

This is the instrument which has been sampled by Sonus Paradisi.

Of the speaking stops between 55% - 63% are probably original Hill stops, though they will have probably been “adjusted” to fit the acoustic of Trinity Methodist and Sankt Afra Kirche. The core of the organ is still a Hill instrument with the Great and Swell divisions being largely intact from the Hill specification.

There is an “interesting” time-lapse vide of the installation of the organ in Sankt Afra Kirche at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUgjlhPHSJA

I’ve written a small, more detail article about the organ which can be found at http://iainstinson.com/hauptwerk/hillorgandetails.pdf .


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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby Andrew Grahame » Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:30 am

Hi Iain,

Thank you very much for this valuable information. I was wondering just how much of this organ was actual Hill pipework, as the current stoplist is clearly that of an enlarged rebuild.

I now understand why the Great Mixture is quint/unison only. Hill would normally have included a Tierce in his chorus mixtures - sometimes only in the bass - but here it seems he included it on the separate Sesquialtera (since removed) and thus left it out of the Mixture. Fortunately the Swell mixture still has its tierce. There's a characteristic "ring" to a Hill principal chorus, and without the tierce that authenticity just isn't there.

It's good to have an organ from the Hill stable now available through Hauptwerk. Having grown up in Australia hearing and playing authentic Hill instruments I am a keen enthusiast of this style. It's been said that there are more intact 19th-century mechanical-action English organs to be found intact today in Australia than in the UK, because most of the latter have been rebuilt. Certainly some of the Australian instruments have been rebuilt and a few have been lost altogether, but there still remains an impressive list of instruments which have survived well to the present day.

It would be really great if a sample set producer could create a sample set of the very latest, and arguably the best, Hill restoration. It's the organ formerly of the Adelaide Town Hall, now thoroughly and immaculately restored and sounding splendid in its new home at Tanunda, South Australia. The first CD to be released on this instrument (available from the website below) is in my view to be highly recommended.

http://www.barossaorgan.com/

This glorious instrument dates from 1877, modestly rebuilt in 1885 but utterly ruined in a disastrous rebuild in 1970. The Adelaide Town Hall now houses a splendid new instrument by Walker (installed in 1990) while the old Hill has been painstakingly restored - even to the extent of major lost or scrapped components being totally reconstructed - and rehoused in another building where it can once more be heard in all its glory. Of the various Hill instruments in Australia still sounding as they would have done when first built, this would have to be the current leading light.

Andrew
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby einer_von_weitem » Sun Aug 19, 2018 11:48 am

Iain, many thanks for this and the article. You answer a number of questions I had about the instrument in St Afra, confirming my suspicion that it is not really appropriate to speak of this as a "Hill" organ. I wish producers of sample sets would make more of an effort to research the instruments that they offer and that more information of the kind you provide were made available as a matter of routine when a sample set is put on the market. This includes the exact provenance of the pipework, how the pipework was affected by rebuilds, and last but not least what kind of action the organ has.
My Hauptwerk Recordings on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJu6YY ... XMA/videos
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby jkinkennon » Sun Aug 19, 2018 2:32 pm

IainStinson wrote:Of the speaking stops between 55% - 63% are probably original Hill stops, though they will have probably been “adjusted” to fit the acoustic of Trinity Methodist and Sankt Afra Kirche. The core of the organ is still a Hill instrument with the Great and Swell divisions being largely intact from the Hill specification.

I read this to mean the instrument is very much a Hill product. In any case the sample set needs to be evaluated on its own merits to determine whether it is much different than other Hill organs. One can anticipate the usual superb Sonus Paradisi workmanship as well as the 6-channel format.
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Re: English Virtual Organ by Sonus Paradisi

Postby RichardW » Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:46 pm

IainStinson wrote:I’ve written a small, more detail article about the organ which can be found at http://iainstinson.com/hauptwerk/hillorgandetails.pdf .


Iain, thanks for doing the work - very interesting.

The organ I was comparing it to was the Hill (originally) in St Oswald's in Ashbourne. An NPOR search on Derbyshire Ashbourne should locate it. I compared the current stop lists of both organs and they are quite similar to my untrained eye. Maybe both organs were developed or enhanced in similar ways.

Regards,
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