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Used Orla Grande Theatre Organ

£2,199.00

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Category:

Used Orla Grande Theatre Organ

Overview

The Grande Theatre organ not only takes its place as the flagship or the Orla Range but also represents the culmination of 7 years of development of the Orla GT series. Like its predecessors is it a firm favorite to many. Orla just keeps getting better and better!

The Appearance of The Grande Theatre

The Orla Grande Theatre organ comes along in a beautiful cabinet, that is made from contemporary style wooden veneer. The buttons are golden, and so having a contrasting dark wood background, simply makes the organ look very elegant and stylish.

The Sounds Of The Grande Theatre

The Orla organ has a 7 speaker amplification system, which very much compliments the high definition voices that the organ has to offer you, and of course, this includes the Blackpool Type Theatre Organ voices.

Bursting with so many different sounds to offer you, from strings to saxophones, the Orla Grande Theatre will be able to provide you with the perfect sounds to impress you and your fellow listeners. The Grande theatre certainly does not come short of sounds and is, therefore, able to suit all of the popular music genres.

The Orla Grande theatre organ has certainly been designed with the home player in mind, being able to offer you key features such as Automatic Organ and Automatic Set Up. As the user, this is giving you over 200 professional registrations.

Now, is the organ easy to use?

Absolutely. A huge reason for the success of this Grande Theatre organ is due to the ease of use, which is undeniably a very very important factor that must be considered with your purchase. In order to get the most out of your organ, you need to be able to figure out how you can use it, and once this is mastered you have limitless opportunities to play to the best of your ability. There is no doubt that you will be able to show off to your fellow organists!

So, here are some of the newest additions to the Orla Grande Theatre organ (since the previous model)

  • Blackpool style theatre organ sounds
  • Studio sampled piano, strings, guitars, brass, woodwind, and many more. This provides you with ultra-realistic voicing.
  • Improved 7 channel SCS speaker system with sub-bass enhancement for the ultimate ‘live’ sound.
  • Contemporary yet elegant American Walnut Theatre Style Cabinet
  • Softly lit dark wood grain control panel with high definition gold lettering

Above all, whether in the hands of a home enthusiast or a professional player, the Grande Theatre will not disappoint.

Dimensions and Weight:

Size(W x D x H): 124 cm x 62.5 cm x 108 cm (Height excludes Music Rest)

Weight – 90 kg

Specification

Keyboards –  2 x 61 note Touch Sensitive Keyboards – 13 note pedalboard

Split Lower Keyboard  – Split Lower keyboard option (Programmable Split Point)

Sound Sections – Colour Code System for easy access to all sections

Sound Libraries –  GM Sound List (128 sounds), Theatre Organ Sounds(44 sounds), ORLA XR Reality HD Sound List
(209 sounds High Quality GM sound Variations), Accordion sound List (40 sounds)

Upper Flutes – 9 Flutebars, 4 Organ Presets + 4 User Presets, Attack, Sustain (programmable),
Motion Effect Slow/Fast, Percussion: 5 1/3’, 4’, 2 2/3’(programmable levels),
3 Click types, Overdrive, Vibrato (programmable)

Lower Flutes –  5 Flutebars, 4 Organ Presets + 4 User Presets, Sustain

Upper Orchestra 1 – 405 Internal Sounds, Chorus, Sustain, Octave, User, Volume

Upper Orchestra 2 –  361 Internal sounds, Portamento, Poly/Mono, Octave, User, Volume

Special – 361 Internal Sounds, Chorus, Sustain, Octave, User, Volume

Lower Orchestra – 361 Internal Sounds, Chorus, Sustain, Octave, User, Volume

Bass – 361 Internal Sounds Sustain, Octave, User, Volume

Conductor – 8 x On/Off buttons for each section. Additive or Self Cancelling Modes

Sustain – Individually programmable for each sound within the Orchestra Sections.

Octave – Octave Shift for each Orchestra section (+ or – 2 Octaves)

Rhythm Section –  106 Super Styles with 3 Variations (5 part arrangements), 16 User Styles,
MFC (2 Types), OFC (5 types covering all one fi nger systems), Auto Bass,
Custom Bass, Auto Chord, Memory, Split set, Intro/Ending, Fade,
Fill 1/2, Auto Start, Start/Stop, Drum Volume, Acc. 1, 2, 3 Volumes

Dynamic Frequency Compensator –  Low/High Frequency Adjustment, Presence & Mic/Input Level

Digital Reverb – 12 Types – Room 1,2 & 3, Hall 1 & 2, Plate, Delay, Pan Delay,
Organ Room, Organ Hall, Stage, Theatre.
Reverb on/off selection for Upper,Lower, Bass, Drums & Accomp.Reverb Lock.

Orla Magic Chord – Open and Closed harmonies. Octave Up option on Closed Harmony.

S.M.F. Disk –  Auto Save System for all fi les, Record, Play/Stop, Pause, Melody On/Off,
Scroll Up/Down, Rew./FF, Volume

General Presets –  6 banks of 16 Registrations: Reality Flutebars, Virtual Theatre,
Church Organ, Reality Combo, Reality Orchestra & Reality Band.

Left Volume Programmable Manual Balance

Bass to Lower – Bass note is automatically generated from the chord played.
Root note or Chromatic.

Custom Bass  – Auto Bass from Pedals

Lock – All left or Style Only options

Power Up – 2 settings – Default or Last Registration

Easy Edit – Voice Edit system via the Modulation Wheel

Auto Set-Up – 106 Style Settings

Overall Presets –  16 Programmable presets

Styles – 16 Programmable Styles. Style Maker- A very easy system to modify styles

Chorus – Chorus: 16 Types – Chorus 1,2,3 & 4, Feedback, Flanger, Short Delay,
Feedback Delay, Delay 1,2,3 & 4, Pan Delay 1 & 2, Multi Delay 1 & 2.

Enhancer – 5 Types of Surround Sound effects

Pedals – Volume Pedal with 2 foot switches and Piano Style Sustain Pedal

Foot Switch functions – Intro/Ending,Fill 1,Fill 2,Start/Stop, Rhythm Variation, Glide, Hold, Registration
Shift +/-, Fade, Tempo +/-, Slow/Fast Tremolo, Vibrato, Conductor section control.

Controls –  Right/Left Balance, Master Volume, Left Volume, OMC, Set Button

Tuning – Transpose, Pitch

Touch Response –  On/Off, 5 selectable Curves

Wheels – Pitch, Modulation

Midi – 32 Midi Channels, Control Change On/Off, Program ChangeOn/Off, Local Control On/Off, Int./Ext. Clock, Midi In (2)/Out/Thru

Sockets – 2 x L/R Outputs, 2 x L/R Inputs

Headphone – Headphone Socket

Amplification –  7 Channels, 7 Soft Cone Speakers, 170 Watts

Cabinet – Real Wood Veneer with Roll Top Lid & Panel Lighting

Size – (WxDxH) 124 cm x 62.5 cm x 108 cm (Height excludes Music Rest)

Weight – 90 kg

Our Thoughts

A review of the Grande Theatre by Michael Wooldridge

So, the new Grande Theatre. Well, to get the basics over, it has a lovely American Walnut cabinet, holding two 61-note manuals and a 13-note pedalboard. It is a traditional organ style and houses a superb amplification system, which delivers a rich and powerful sound. The operating system and stop panel are the same as on the earlier GT9000, other than the fact the panel now has a dark background to give a far more exclusive finish and easier reading of the stop captions, so using this organ is ever so easy for those of us who have enjoyed playing earlier Orlas. Don’t allow this to fool you into thinking that this means the old model has just undergone some sort of an upgrade, since the insides that create the sounds have been doubled up and most of voicing has been created totally afresh. The end result of this extra circuitry and creativity is that the organ overall has a far greater clarity of voicing, which I very much approve of.

For anyone who is not familiar with Orlas, the sounds are arranged in sound groups with an orchestral conductor placed centrally just above the keyboard. To make it ultra easy, they colour code each group, so if you want to use the piano from the blue section, you press the blue piano button and the blue conductor button and there it is. Orla give far more individual voice buttons than most manufacturers, including a third voice when any two adjacent buttons are pressed and a second voice option for each button. This makes them easier to hand register, with far less need to delve into menus and functions. The second voice for each button is accessed by pressing the User button, so called as although they come with a sensible alternative voice ready set, the user can change this second voice to be any voice whatsoever, with no need for it to have any connection to the original voice at all. As I said, this voicing has, for my ears, greatly improved upon the previous ranges. They have managed to keep that warm, full sound we are used to expecting from an Orla but have given the voices a more lifelike edge and, when used in combination, perhaps putting the Trumpet and Sax on together, seem to keep the individuality of each of the mixed sounds, rather than becoming one new sound.

Thinking of the Trumpets, Paule played Glenn Miller’s Adios for me on the new Trumpet and it sounded absolutely gorgeous. There is also a brand new Piano sample, which gives a fabulous sound. Other new highlights include some fabulous Guitars and a great new Jazz Organ sample, which sounded well on its own or when mixed in with the Orla Flutebars.

Thinking of the Flutebars, it is worth remembering that the large Orlas have on them a full set of nine Flutebars for the Upper plus a smaller set of five Flutebars for the Lower and, in themselves, these can make up all of the musical colours of the rainbow! Sadly, the skill of using drawbars well seems to be a disappearing one and it is rare these days, other than at out and out Hammond shows, to hear anyone much using them live but I still find this a very satisfying way to create music and by having the two sets on the Grande Theatre, you really can use them well.

The Strings are also even more beautiful than they were before; they have always been good on Orla products. The Vocal Strings have a lovely warm vocal tone underpinning the string voice and the Mantovani Strings are simply delightful.

This brings us to one of my criticisms of earlier Orla models, which was that they had theatre organ voices which sounded not very like theatre organs! At last they have answered my call by here including some of the now renowned samples taken from the legendary Blackpool Tower Wurlitzer by Reg Rawlings for his very successful Theatre Organ In A Box. They have also kept the previous sounds which, although they weren’t to my taste, do now blend in with the new samples quite successfully to give a further range of tone colours.

Other sounds that have shown great improvement include the Clarinet, which now has a very realistic, woody tone, and the Vibes, which have a clean bell like edge to them. A clever little feature on the Orla is that each and every voice has an individually pre-set sustain level which you activate by pressing the sustain button. This means that you just know when you press sustain you will instantly have a practical amount of sustain for whichever instrument you are using. If you should want to create some special effects, perhaps by increasing sustain, you can change the setting for any of the instruments.

Thinking of things that the user can change, another is the reverb, where the standard setting has reverb on Upper and Lower sounds but not on the Drums or Bass. Again you can change this to choose one of a dozen different reverb types and which parts you would like it to be on. Whilst this does set into the memories, there is a Global Lock option which means you can change the reverb to one setting across the whole instrument and is especially handy if you end up playing in a different venue to your usual location.

Thinking of making the organ sound correct for the room you are in, the Grande Theatre has a couple of sliders for Equalisation, which allow you to adjust the bass and treble response to suit your ears, your taste and the room where the organ is situated. This is very good and it is a shame that such a simple and effective idea has not been taken on by other brands. Also in the area to the left of the keyboards is the microphone input volume slider and the pitch bend and modulation wheels.

As we expect these days, there are more styles than you can think what to do with. As usual, these give a drum rhythm, bass pattern and musical accompaniment, driven by the lower manual chords. Again, this is another area where they have taken note of one of my comments. On the older models, I found some of the rhythms, and particularly the brush patterns in them, to be rather mushy. This has now gone, replaced by new sampled drum sounds and some new patterns which are far clearer and, consequently, more real.

The keying of the musical parts of the styles is from the chords you play. I think it worth recapping here that Orla always allow you to do this in really any way you are used to. Their One Finger Chord system, allows you to choose which style of Single Finger Chord you like and gives five options which include all of those used by Yamaha, Casio, Lowrey, Kawai and even Technics organs, where you determine minor and seventh chords by playing a bass pedal. This really does mean that, wherever you have come from musically, you will be comfortable here. If, like me, you prefer to play bass pedals for yourself, you can use the Custom Bass option, where you play a pedal and it then becomes included with the style.

Orla styles cover the whole genre of music. Where they perhaps differ from some manufacturers is that they have quite a number which are not too busy, so allow you to play a whole range of tunes over just the one style. Yes, they do include some of the more tune specific ones as well, but not so many, which I feel leaves the player much more in control of their music making and individuality. Styles I particularly enjoyed include the Bossa Nova, which is very open and gentle, and the Calypso, which has not only the Steel Drums but also brings along a Twin-Mallet marimba with it. The 70s Ballad is very much ready to play John Lennon’s Imagine and the 60s Organ style A Whiter Shade of Pale, though there are other tunes which do fit!

The new theatre organ samples from Reg Rawlings have been included in some new theatre organ backing styles, including a Theatre Waltz and a 6/8 March. These theatre styles give Tibia glissandos and some big theatrical openings and closings with the Intros and Endings all really well programmed.

Another feature of the Orla is a Lower Balance control, which enables the relative balance between the upper and lower keyboards, most importantly, the lower section including the styles, auto bass and drums, to be rebalanced simply and quickly. This is a fabulously simple and useful feature, as all too often you hear people playing with an imbalanced sound where the melody is difficult to distinguish and, on many instruments, it is not so easy to remedy. On many products, it is necessary to turn down the volumes for all of the accompaniment parts, bass, left sounds and drums individually but then the next factory setting turns them all back up again, which can be very frustrating.

On the Orla, the Lower Volume feature simply rebalances the melody and accompaniment, and the great news is that when you set the level to suit the way you play, it overrides all of the factory settings, including when you use inbuilt presets, leaving everything balanced to suit you. When you have set up a sound you enjoy, it is wise to save it into one of the 16 memory buttons (1 to 8 in groups A and B) which are just above the treble end of the upper keyboard. The Grande Theatre has an enormous range of built in preset sounds and these seem to give a complete tour of the instrument and just about every sound combination you are likely to find useful. That said, I would highly commend perhaps using one of these preset sounds for your starting point and then experimenting by changing one or two of the voices to add variety and your own personality.

There are Automatic Organ Presets, which are arranged in families, organs, orchestras, bands etcetera but also include suggested rhythm styles and tempos. If you prefer, you can select ‘Rhythm Lock’ and then they just change the sounds, so you can use the presets for whatever you want to play. Like the overall presets, they are in groups of 16, arranged as 1 – 8 in Groups A & B. There are then another whole load of registrations which have been aligned to each and every rhythm style. All of these have been thoughtfully registered and I think you will find they give you some beautiful sounds for your music making in every style.

I think Orla have a real winner with this new organ. It looks stylish, sounds expensive and, as we mentioned near the start, costs around half of the price of most of its competitors.

If you’ve enjoyed this review, subscribe to Organ & Keyboard Cavalcade Magazine for the latest news and views from the world of keyboards, digital pianos and home organs, plus lots of hints, tips and tutorials. www.CavalcadeProductions.co.uk

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