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Question re: trompetas and clarines

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  • Question re: trompetas and clarines

    I have this record by E. Power Biggs, of music by Spanish composers,
    played on great organs in Spain. These organs have trompetas and
    clarines. There is some fantastic music on this record. These
    trumpets make for a really unusual sound. Biggs says that it was
    typical of the Spanish organ builders to include the trumpets, and
    some of the Spanish composers wrote specifically for organs that have
    My question is, how common are these trumpets on pipe organs in
    America? I know of one organ that has them- the great organ of the
    Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, of Fort Lauderdale, FL. I believe it
    was designed by Diane Bish and built by the Fratelli Rufatti Company.
    There must be other pipe organs in America with trumpets, I imagine.
    Anyone know of any? And has anyone heard any of this music I've
    described, live?

  • #2
    Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

    Hello, Berry! I'm delighted that you mentioned that record! That's the FIRST RECORD I ever bought, back in the early 50's, and I still get a kick out of it. I went out and bought as much of the music as I could, and I still play it!

    I'm surprised at our friend's answer that there aren't too many horizontal trumpets. This leads me to believe that the answer is regional. Here, (Kansas City) they are all over the place! Case in point: my mother just moved to the tiny town of Liberty, Mo. Yes, that's where Jesse James robbed the bank! And the church just down the street from the bank has a horizontal trumpet! And I'm not sure it is the only one in town, either.

    Horizontal trumpets come in two main varieties, French and Spanish, and have different names. The French call them Trompettes en Chamade. I THINK this means the same thing as the Spanish Trompeta en Batutta, or battle trumpet. Cavaille Coll built several of them. These are terribly powerful and they are elegant, but best mounted as far away from the congregation as you can get them! Up at the very top of the building at the back is a good place. Somewhere that will cost you thousands to ever get it tuned again! St. John the Devine is a good example of this type, and notice how high above the floor it is. Cavaille Coll frequently laid his down on top of the swell box. If the stop is in front with the rest of the organ, assuming that the organ is in front, it becomes a heroic solo stop to be played against the accompaniment of full organ.

    Spanish stops are not as loud and buzzier. Lots of times people call them Reals (ray Alls), or royals, from the Spanish name Trompeta Real, or royal trumpet. Lately I see the term Llamada (say ya MA da) being used. In Spain, also Mexico, they frequently mount an entire division of horizontal reeds on the front of the organ. Yep! 16' 8', and 4', AND reed mixtures! THAT you gotta hear to believe!

    Many of my friends in the AGO inform me that French style is best; therefore, I'm expected to prefer them! Frankly, depending on the voicing of the organ, I think they're both fun to hear! But judging from what our friend has to say, maybe you should expect to hear more of them in some parts of the country than others. Could be that this is just a chamade area.

    If you decide that you want one, remember that as dramatic as they are, normally it is NOT that difficult to find a doner! One possibility is to volunteer to put the doner's name on the stop knob; i.e., the Boyd Trumpet in Corpus Christi, Tex. The saddening thing is, just TRY to get someone to pave the parking lot, or donate another Mens' Room!



    • #3
      Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

      aristide c-c of france presumably was influenced by iberian organs as far as chamades. the st sulpice example is hooded and was there before c-c worked on the organ in 1863. the last big job in 1889 has 2 chamades/8 and 4 and they r magnificent. i think his voicing was influenced by cliquot reeds although it may have been more refined but im guessing.
      the spanish horizontals one of which i saw about 400 yeras old at trivo co in hagerstown in homer lewis voicing room were nice also but a different character than c-c.

      i like both/ but aeolian-skinner re-introduced these to usa/ one was preped in 1932 harvard job but not installed/ 1st one was kilgore texas 1948/ bombarde en chamade and magnificent voicing of oscar pearson/ pipes spotted metal

      here in warren ohio the holtkamp near by has a copper fanfara right over ur head at the console and it is very fine

      west point has a 32 foot ophicleide under the risers in the transept that is horizontal as does st patricks cathedral in new york in the triforium

      the horizontal placement of any reed is thought to cause it to develop many additional harmonics
      according to barnes' book

      all saints worcester aeolian-skinner has a hooded one and 2 chamades in the galleryl one 8ft and one 16ft half length...they make for quite a clang and then there r the 3 reeds in the chancel triforium bombarde 16-8-4 by oscar pearson that r killers

      at any rate i like all chamades/trompetas/clarines etc and yes i was startled out of my wits in 1972 new years day when i attended a service at st john the divine and sat under the state trumpet
      years later i played it on a few occasions

      oscar pearson went deaf on that one

      saw the hooded reeds at atlantic city on 100 inches
      didnt go into the ceiling fanfare cause of asbestos to see the en chamade on 50 inches that senator richards speced out

      all in all i like them all


      • #4
        Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

        Isn't that interesting about the St. Sulpice chamade! I knew about the stop and had always assumed that it was a flat horizontal reed laying on top of something, like most of the rest of them. But, then, yesterday I ran across their website stsulpice.com which is entirely about the organ, including the spec. There is a picture of the chamade on the website. WELL worth bringing up and seeing.

        I thoroughly agree with you: they're ALL fun to listen to!



        • #5
          Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

          Well, let's not forget the Crystal Cathedral in California, shall we??? It has the finest reeds in the world, and a pedal to support it! The 32' diapason is *STUNNING*, and the 32' Bombarde is fine! There are 3 ranks of Trompette-en-Chamades on one side of the building, 4 ranks on the other, and at least one more rank sticking out of the back! ~Cindy! :-D


          • #6
            Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

            re: crystal cathedral chamades

            the 7 ranks added 1980 weren't so hot cause fred swann quietly had them revoiced by trivo co in hagerstown md
            so much for the reed voicing of the local crew who voiced those pipes originally


            • #7
              Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

              There was a great article in "The American Organist" (the AGO's magazine) on spanish organs in the late 80s or early 90s. I regret that I cannot be more specific for date or issue.

              Some important things I remeber from it follow: The reed and flue components were not compatable, they were not tuned, or even pitched togather and were never meant to be played togather. The reed manual was for "Batallas" ie battles - special pieces of the 17th and 18th centuries combining trumpet calls and national tunes to commemorating various spanish military actions. Tchkovsky's (sic) mixing of the "Marsaillese" and "God Save Holy Russia" was not an original concept in the 1812.

              Many of the banks of reed stops were in fact regals, i.e. They had uniform length resonators at all pitches, and varied the pitch and tuning by changing the length of the reed itself.
              The Important stop "Trompeta Real" may indeed be translated as "royal trumpet" but in some cases may be "Trumpet regal" . The results tended to be buzzy individualy, but in chorsu were magnificent. If I ever get to Spain, I hunger to be around them. I hope HM Juan Carlos is keeping them maintained.

              Large concert organs from the 1900s could have several ranks of powerful reeds, though not horizontal, such as Tuba Mirabilis at 16', 8', 4', and 2'. Even in the ubiquitous swell chambers of the era, they were impressive.



              • #8
                Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

                im really glad u mentiond 1900s cause i have had the distinct pleasure of doodling around on canadas largest and by far most impressive organ the metropolitan united church toronto casavant of 1930 with a recent addition in the gallery by casavant

                the bombarde on manual v has a stemtorphone and a 7 rk mixture along with tubas 16-8-5-1/3-4 all independent

                the effect is startling

                the tuba sonora in the orchestral is a sublime tone indeed

                also a special prize is the orch trumpet which is a blaze of forte trumpet tone to stand out above the crowd

                the gt has only 4 unison opens/pity

                32 bombarde is magnificent

                casavant was by 1930 an a-1 outfit even as it continues to be today and hats off to the great organs of yesteryear that werent afraid nor apologetic about what they were able to do well


                • #9
                  Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

                  An additional interesting point. Those Spanish trumpet ranks were voiced on 2" to 3" wind pressure, while the late romantic era concert reeds.we've beed refering to might be 50" to 100"!! ya gotta admire the old masters.



                  • #10
                    Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

                    I have always loved big trumpet stops of all kinds. I still think that the State Trumpet at St John the Divine in New York City is the best I have ever heard anywhere. Unfortunately the organ has been water damaged and is not currently playing, I don't even know if they are planning a rebuild.

                    I really hope that the Atlantic City Convention Hall project takes off and I actually get to hear that organ some day. There are 4 ranks on 100" wind, I don't think any other organ in the world has ever used more than 60", and of course there are also some stops (not just reeds!) on 50" pressure. My first LP in the 50s was Bob Elmore playing Bach on the Biggest, recently reissued on CD.

                    Washington Cathedral has a wonderful Trinity of stops including the original Skinner Tuba Mirabilis in the South Triforium, the Aeolian-Skinner Trompette-en-Chamade over the high altar at the east end, and an enormous Cymbal mixture of about 10 ranks on about 10" wind in the Great in the North triforium. These 3 stops blend well together and can easily outplay all the rest of the instrument, and provide a fine cap to the full ensemble.

                    I also have the old Biggs ecording of Spanish organ music. I never got to Spain, but I do love those sounds.


                    • #11
                      Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines

                      St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral in Fond du Lac Wisconsin has a rank of Chamade Trumpets. The stop on the console is "Episcopal Trumpet 8'" It is located on the choir manual and can be coupled with use of the Choir to Choir 16' and 4' and to the Great Manual, Swell Manual and Pedal with use of prospective couplers. These trumpets are mounted over the main entrance to the Cathedral. The organ is a Moeller but I don't know the date or opus number.

                      I have personally played this organ with the trumpets. There is a 3 second time delay from the pressing of the key to the sound of the trumpet. They are truly a joy to play.

                      First Presbyterian Church, located at 406 Grant Street, Wausau, WI. has chamade trumpets. I have also played this instrument. This instrument is a Schlicker. The trumpets are mounted above the choir in-between the pipe chambers. Another wonderful instrument to play.


                      • #12
                        Re: Question re: trompetas and clarines


                        The Fratelli Rufatti 89 rank pipe organ at St. Mary's Cathedral in San Francisco, CA has a Tropetta Real stop (8'). It does sound very Spanish, like the trompettas on that marvelous Biggs recording you referred to.
                        Go to the web site for the Cathedral or check out the Rufatti web-site.