All things Bright and Musical
On Sunday 14 May 2017, the streets of Diss were alive to the sound of all things Bright and Musical during the first Diss Organ Festival.
Thousands enjoyed the spring sunshine in the town park, through the streets and up to the newly refurbished Cornhall, all accompanied by the unique sound of mechanical music.
Over 40 locations around the town hosted organs drawn from all over the UK with several from mainland Europe. Ranging from grand fairground and concert organs such as "de Grote Gaviolo" through the hand operated machines of the British Organ Grinders Association down to the more intimate display in the Cornhall by the Musical Box Society GB – the right note was certainly struck.
The event was conceived and organised by, a name familiar to many of you, Alan Smith, who amongst his professional titles, achieved whilst owning TW Gaze, of chartered surveyor, auctioneer and agricultural valuer can surely now add the title of impresario.
Teaming up with the Diss Town Council, South Norfolk Council and MOOS (The Mechanical Organ Owners Society) Alan was able to create something unique to the Town, drawing many first time visitors to it. They must have been impressed. Diss performed splendidly. As did organist David Ivory during his recital in St. Marys Church.
The event was closed at 4.30pm in the Cornhall by a showing of a Buster Keaton Silent Movie with dramatic theatre organ accompaniment presented by the Theatre Organ Club.
With one nostalgic eye and one eye on the future (if anyone didn’t catch Oasis "Wonderwall" I recommend a visit to the MOOS Facebook page) Alan, ably supported by organ builder and restorer Jonny Ling, achieved what all musical directors hope for, he left Diss wanting more. Encore.