The first public talk to accompany the Restoration Project took place at 7pm on Thursday 20th November 2014 at Colchester Town Hall. Entitled ‘Organ Building and the Normans’, the talk was given by John Norman, descendant of the Norman & Beard organ builders that built Colchester Moot Hall Organ.
John Norman studied organ under H.A.Roberts FRCO and acoustics under Dr R.W.B.Stephens at Imperial College, London where he took a BSc honours degree. He studied voicing and tonal design under Robert Lamb and Mark Fairhead at Hill, Norman & Beard, and later worked on mechanical design and on tonal design and supervision, and directed work on seven cathedral organs and the recital organ in the Royal College of Organists before leaving professional organbuilding. John Norman is a Fellow of the Incorporated Society of Organbuilders and was recently elected an Honorary Life Fellow of the Institute of Musical Instrument Technology, of which he is a past-President. He is a regular columnist for the Organists’ Review and author or joint author of four books on organs.
The talk was well attended and very much enjoyed by Friends of the Moot Hall Organ and members of the public.