Friday 13th September
I'm just back from a stimulating couple of days in Swindon, where last night I gave the inaugural recital on a singularly fine organ in the very well-attended Catholic church of the Holy Rood. Anthony Hall (of Clevedon organs) has been 'titulaire' there for some years and his firm has just finished enlarging and enhancing the 1930 Ainscough organ. A gorgeous terraced console designed by Anthony and made by Colin Peacock's team at Renatus was exceptionally comfortable to play and the large and enthusiastic audience made playing a real delight. I can't remember when I enjoyed playing an opening recital as much!
Sunday 8th September
It has been a stimulating weekend in Cardiff, where the RCO, IAO and BIOS have mounted this year's three-day Organ Fest. RCO President Gerald Brooks gave immaculately prepared recitals on the two splendid 3-manual Father Willis organs in the city, David Briggs performed an heroic programme on the majestic Nicholson in Llandaff Cathedral (to be broadcast later this month on BBC Radio 3), and a most interesting lecture recital was given in the National Museum of Wales, centred on the Snetzler / Green / Gray & Davison organ in its beautiful and unique Robert Adam case. Anne and I enjoyed all the music and also the social aspects of the weekend, meeting up with many friends. I took a photo of the wonderful Snetzler in the museum; the trip was worth the effort for this organ alone.