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WIZARD OF THE ORGAN
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ORGAN LOFT WHISPERINGS
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"Organ Loft Whisperings"
The complete writings from Paris 1893-1894 by Fannie Edgar Thomas, correspondent to New York's Musical Courier. Compiled and edited by Agnes Armstrong, completely indexed with an extensive Name Glossary identifying each of the personalities mentioned in the text. More than 200 pages of interviews and observations, generously illustrated with many newly-discovered and rarely-seen period photographs. Featuring a comprehensive Preface by Agnes Armstrong and Forewords by Orpha Ochse and Kurt Lueders.
Perhaps you remember the excerpts of these fascinating texts which appeared in an article by Agnes Armstrong in THE TRACKER (1990) or perhaps you know the excerpts presented in French translations in LA FLUTE HARMONIQUE, journal of the Association Aristide Cavaillé-Coll (1990-1998).
Now at long last here are the full texts of Fannie Edgar Thomas' ORGAN LOFT WHISPERINGS, researched, corrected and annotated, describing in great detail the Parisian music scence in the belle epoque, relating especially - but not exclusively - to organs and organists of the day. Here you will read about music education in France, in the famed Conservatoire Nationale, of private vocal and instrumental teachers, and of Americans studying music in Paris.
Hardcover edition (9x12 inches) of more than 200 pages.
Available from the Organ Historical Society for $39.95, with a special discounted price for OHS members.
Wholesalers may contact me directly for bulk rates based on purchases of 3 copies or more.
Sticut tuum productions
P. O. Box 19, Altamont, New York 12009 USA.
(destinations in other parts of the world may contact me for special postage rates)
In Adobe Acrobat PDF Format
A review from the Hartford Chapter, AGO newsletter
"Organ Loft Whisperings"
Members of this chapter have, on various festive occasions, been subjected to the video musical travelogues of your wandering sub-dean. Through this medium, a slice of the modern Parisian organ world can be shared. How often have we wondered, though, how fascinating it would be to be able to traverse the years; to visit the St. Sulpice of Widor, the Notre Dame of Vierne, the St. Augustine of Gigout. How wonderful it would be to meet these artists in their own milieu.
Well, wonder no more! Agnes Armstrong, known and loved by us all, has woven a magic carpet of time and space upon which we can do precisely these things! For lo, there was, in that time, an adventurous, feisty woman, a correspondent for the “Musical Courier” weekly of New York, sent thereunto to observe and report upon the musical doings of the City of Light.
“Organ Loft Whisperings” is both the title of Fannie Edgar Thomas’ long-running regular column in the Courier, and the title of Agnes’ collection of these writings in book form. And a fine book form it is a handsome coffee table sized tome in hard cover, well illustrated with contemporary photographs and drawings. But the real magic is Fannie’s prose! Thomas writes with a delightful style -- playful at times, funny, serious when need be, and in many ways remarkably modern, even today. Her observations about all aspects of Parisian life are rich in detail, and never tedious. The effect is that she is with you in person, sharing the secrets of French musical (and especially organ!) life just for you! With a wink and a smile!
You meet in person the great virtuosi and composers whose music still stirs the soul (and frustrates the novice!). Here are Widor, Vierne, Gigout, St. Saens, and a host of others from turn-of-the-century Paris. And here are glimpses of the world they lived and worked in - - the organ pumpers (gee, no electric blowers in 1893!), the conservatoire students, the clergy, the churches, the parlors, and the avenues. Welcome to the Belle Époque!
This book will make a great spring gift for any organist or music lover, especially yourself! After all, if you don’t look out for opus one, who will? You can order it from Sticut Tuum Productions, 168 Main St., Altamont, NY 12009. And I must admit, with a certain reticence, that the pun in the company name took me awhile to figure out!! But pun or no, this is a book you won’t want to miss. Get yours today!