Organs and Royal Carriages

 Posted by at 14:43 on 28 May 2015
May 282015

I love music – lots of different kinds of music. One thing that’s been on my to-do list for absolutely ages was to go see and hear an organ being played. The organs here – they’re MASSIVE. They’re built into the buildings. I’ve never seen anything like them. We must have some like them in America, somewhere, because some of the organists are American, but we don’t have them in little ol Bossier City, even though it’s the heart of the Bible belt.

Bridgewater Hall organ pipes

Bridgewater Hall organ pipes

The pipes are stunning enough to look at – always such a centerpiece to any building they’re in. These are in the Bridgewater Hall – Manchester’s premier concert venue for acoustics. There are 5,500 pipes there.

Bridgewater Hall organ console

Bridgewater Hall organ console

However, anytime I see the console (controller) for the organ, I just stand there, mouth agape, wondering how on Earth one person manages to control all that.

Finally, I found a concert I could get to – Bridgewater Hall put on a series, and I could get to one, called Dancing Feet. Last week, I went. Boy, what an appropriate title! His feet did move across the foot keyboard so much – and his hands across the four other keyboards – and THE SOUND coming out of that thing was unreal; it was like an entire orchestra!!!

Well, I was gobsmacked; absolutely blown away. Jonathan Scott, the organist, has a number of videos on YouTube. Here’s one (at the Bridgewater, no less!) for a taster:


So, while I’m figuring out what I’d like to do when I visit London next week, I came across an organ recital. Oh, right. The timing was a bit tight for my garden party, but – not knowing anything about where things are (after all, that’s what maps are for) – I was vaguely hopeful that perhaps the chapel was perhaps very near Buckingham Palace, so I could do both.

St George’s Chapel is the chapel attached to Windsor Castle, so I duly went to Google Maps and typed in directions from Windsor Castle to Buckingham Castle, as you do. I clicked on the public transport option, of course.


And what option should appear, but “Take the Royal Carriage!” As you do!

“Oy, Queeny, can I blag a lift?” ;-P

Told this to a friend of mine today, after showing her the HAT I’d found (yes! I found one! they’ll let me in! phew!), and she reckoned that with that hat I’d be alright, actually. After she left, I found a picture of the new royal carriage:


The hat might pass inspection, but I’m less sure about my dress, up against that contraption of gold leaf!

  2 Responses to “Organs and Royal Carriages”

  1. I’ve always been fascinated with large organs. The church I grew up in had a large (not compared to this one though) organ that was built into the church. When I was in the choir, I sat near the pipes, and really enjoyed listening to all the organist could do to make it sound so good.

    It’s good that you have an appropriate hat for your visit to London and I think you should make reservations for the royal carriage. Be sure to get a picture of you next to it, that would be fab!

    BTW what is the occasion for your trip to London? Are you driving down or taking public transportation?
    I hope you have a great time SJ, look forward to hearing all about it!

    • I’m going for the Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace, of course! That’s why I was looking on Google Maps to see if I could make it to Buckingham Palace in time for the garden party 🙂

      The place I’m staying’s in the center of London, so it’s in the congestion charge zone – 4 days at £11/day for that alone makes the train cheaper than driving, especially since I was going to take public transport through London in any event. Driving in London city center doesn’t appeal in the least (even less, were that possible, than driving in New York City). The train’ll be easy, except for manhandling the luggage (including the hat box!).

      Not sure that the royal carriage is a tourist attraction – I know the article said the Queen rode in it yesterday to open Parliament.

      Yes, pictures have been demanded left, right, and center, and then the invitation arrived, informing me that cameras and photography are NOT allowed at the garden party. I shall have to paint pictures of it with words!

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