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Topic: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

  1. #1

    Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    I'm just finishing up a commission by the Organ Artists Series of Pittsburgh that consists of an Organ Prelude, an Anthem for SATB Choir & Organ, and an Organ Postlude.

    The anthem's text is by Philipp Melanchthon (1497-1560), a contemporary and friend of Martin Luther. Luther and Melanchthon were, together, the primary proponents of the German Reformation.

    The anthem has three themes each of which I have given "tune names", as is common in Hymnody. The anthem's second theme, named "Melanchthon", is the basis of the Organ Postlude.

    Postlude on "Melanchthon" (2.3gb mp3)

    GPO instruments used are all dry Pipe Organ: Brustwerk All Stops, Symphonic Plenum, Full Organ, Baroque Plenum Pedal and Baroque Plenum Reed Pedal.

    The score was created in Finale, exported as midi and imported into Sonar. To keep the audio results as close to GPO Studio quality as possible, the only other plugin used is the Ambience Reverb (Church preset).

    Hope you enjoy!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Kauai, Hawaii, USA

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    What a GLORIOUS organ GPO gives us!

    This is very believably a recording done in a fine cathedral with perfect acoustics (rare in cathedrals, truth be told!) and the piece is just grand!

    Thanks for sharing!


  3. #3

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    Turned it up and rattleed the windows! Awesome!

  4. #4

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    Thanks guys...I'm flattered.

    It is phenomenal the sheer volume of sound a pipe organ can produce, and the GPO Instruments do it amazingly well. BTW, the lowest G that comes in a beat or three after the last chord is not notated, but a true resultant!

    Karl, I think we need to leave PA and visit Kevin in Kauai to see if what he says is true!

  5. #5

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    Thanks Glenn,

    I thoroughly enjoyed this composition.

    It passes the goosebumps test -- thrilling build to the end created by your fugal writing. And, as was mentioned, it is a clear recording, as if the aucoutics of the Church are perfect for this instrument.

    How did you achieve the gutsy \"reedy\" pedal sound at last 1/3 of the piece? Did you use multiple GPO instruments on the pedal part? I think I do hear the BAROQUE PLENUM PEDAL but maybe more?

    If I recall, a resultant is created by the \"subtractive\" synthesis of pure tones? Is this the same thing that happens in recorder ensembles? Listening to recorder ensembles I hear notes 2 or so octaves below the range of the instruments.

  6. #6

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"


    I'm glad you enjoyed the piece. What a pleasure GPO is to use!

    I'm not sure if the resultant phenomenon is subtractive, but you describe it correctly. Essentially, the notes actually played are typically the 1st and 2nd harmonic (root & fifth) of the resultant you want to create, but other harmonic combinations are possible. The notes need to be perfectly in tune and room acoustics can help immensely, as well, as I believe the resultant is actually a standing wave.

    For instance, cathedral organists often can create a 32' resultant by playing open 5ths in the 16' octave. It usually takes a while to develop to an audible tone, just like in the last chord of the Postlude on "Melanchthon". This was a total surprise. I knew the GPO pipe organ samples were incredibly realistic, but I had no idea we could create this analog effect in a digital realm. (Guess that's why I'm a musician, and not an acoustician!)

    Regarding your pedal sound question, you are correct here, as well. The pedals start off with just Baroque Plenum Pedal, but I add Baroque Plenum Reed Pedal about 2/3rds through the piece (for the aural definition of "gnarly").


  7. #7

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    Glenn thanks for the explanation of how you did it. There are so many things to explore in GPO, but my prayers for more time seem to be never answered.

    Karl, I think we need to leave PA and visit Kevin in Kauai to see if what he says is true!
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">Maybe Kevin would host the upcoming GPO convention. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

    If not, my sister-in-law lives on the Big Island, and has been known to take in hungry musicians. Boy would she be surprised. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    UK- teeming with life....

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    Beautifully done Glenn,

    Sadly I don\'t get to hear church organs very often (only weddings and funerals) but they have been a great favourite of mine since I was a boy. This is a tremendous organ too and beautifully played/ programmed. Fancy getting all these quality instruments thrown in for $250! [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]


    PS It\'s just made me jump back to listen to Duncan Brinsmead\'s beautiful rendition of Saint-Saens Organ Symphony...just perfect except it is spoilt by not being able to get enough volume out of it for some reason.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Orcas Island

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"


    A splendid performance and excellent composition! Grand in every sense of the word.
    It must have taken a long time to do this in Finale.

    Perhaps you can give us some tips for organ performance and writing.

    Hope you let us know when the performance will be.

    Thanks so much for posting this!

    Gary Garritan

  10. #10

    Re: Postlude on "Melanchthon"

    Thanks Gary, I'm pleased you like the Postlude.

    I'd be glad to post a tutorial on Organ Writing using GPO & Finale, but it may be a few days before I get around to it, as I'm still finishing the Prelude for this commission. (BTW, the performance of these pieces is May 2 at Heinz Chapel, Pittsburgh, PA by the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh and guest organist Richard Elliott, one of three full time organists at the Mormon Tabernacle, Salt Lake City.)

    Briefly, I will say it did take a while to program the performance into Finale. Typically, I use a simple GPO Studio setup while I'm composing a piece (one with a good sampling of colors). Then, when I THINK the composition process is finished, I'll save a duplicate of the file under another name and optimize it for the client, live performance and publication.

    The other file I optimize for GPO Studio performance. This is where I'll use a more elaborate GPO Studio setup (usually two instances of GPO Player, which may not seem like a lot until you realize we're only talking about one instrument here) and program tempi & registration changes, etc.

    The GPO Studio performance holds up very well against the Sonar one. When GPO Studio Streamer is ready, I'll post the two renditions side-by-side for comparison. I know you'll be pleased. I'll also be recording the live performance on May 2 and would be happy (I think) to post that as well, so we'll have an a-b-c comparison.

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