Saturday, November 22, 2008

My Lifelong Pipe Organ Hobby

The pipe organ has been my lifelong interest, and I was privileged to serve as organist for 49 years in various churches in Canada as well as in the Netherlands. Accompanying a congregation on the organ was a real joy to me, weeping with those who weep and rejoicing with those who rejoice. Our earthly praise will transcend into heavenly praise and never end.

What a future!

Sola Deo Gloria

China's largest pipe organ locates at Oriental Arts Centre, Shanghai, China

Above: Rieger 5 manual Concert Organ.
China's largest pipe organ is located at the Oriental Arts Centre, Shanghai, China.
The Concert hall is equipped with an 88 stop 5 manual keyboard pipe organ. As the biggest pipe organ in China, it is specially made for Shanghai Oriental Art Center by Austrian Rieger Pipe Organ Co., Ltd.

Westminster Abbey Organ GB


The Harrison and Harrison organ of Westminster Abbey was installed for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937. With four manuals and 84 speaking stops, it incorporated some of the pipework from the previous five manual instrument, built by William Hill in 1848.

The earliest evidence of any organ in the Abbey dates from 1304, referring to ‘a pair of organs’ in the Lady Chapel. From the late sixteenth century there was an organ in the Quire, of which no details survive, but that was certainly played by John Blow and Henry Purcell – two of the most eminent names amongst the list of distinguished Organists of Westminster Abbey.

A new organ, built for the Coronation of George II in 1727, was re-located and placed on the central screen at the entrance to the Quire. This was replaced in 1848 by the Hill organ, built on the North and South sides of the Nave Screen where the Harrison and Harrison instrument now stands. The two organ cases, built originally for the Hill organ in 1895 by the architect J.L. Pearson, were coloured and reinstated in 1959.

No significant changes were made to the original specification until a major overhaul in 1982. A second, unenclosed choir division was installed in the North case, and new stops added to the Great and Pedal divisions.

At the console, a fifth manual was added in preparation for the Bombarde division located in the North Triforium. Completed in 1986, this new department comprises fanfare reeds and a robust chorus, giving the organ a greater presence and supporting large congregations on major occasions.

2006 saw a complete overhaul of the console. The memory capacity was doubled to 512 channels; ten thumb pistons serve each of the four main manuals; new reversible thumbs pistons are in place for 32 foot stops; and the music desk is now fully adjustable.

The Organ plays a central role in the Abbey’s daily liturgy, accompanying the choral music with distinctive colour and sensitivity; it is also a powerful and versatile solo instrument. Organ recitals take place every Sunday, given by the Abbey organists and visitors from across the world, and each year the Summer Organ Festival brings some of the world’s leading performers to the Abbey.



5 Manuals, 120 Ranks, 88 Registers (+ 5 Ext. + 13 Tr.

1730 Schneider
1848, 1884 and 1895 case by Hill
1937-1938 New 84 Registers Harrison & Harrison (GB)
1982 and 1987 ?
1994 renovation


Choir 23 (19)
Open Diapason 8
Claribel Flute 8 *
Rohr Flute 8
Stopped Flute 8 *
Viola da Gambe 8 *
Principal 4
Open Flute 4
Flauto Traverso 4 *
Gemshorn 4 *
Nason 4 *
Nazard 2 2/3
Fifteenth 2
Block Flute 2
Gemshorn Fifteenth 2 *
Tierce 1 3/5
Mixture IV
Mixture II *
Cornopean 8 *
Cremona 8
+ Schweller (nur *)
+ Tremulant

Great 27 (18)
Bourdon 16
Double Geigen 16
Open Diapason I 8
Open Diapason II 8

Stopped Diapason 8
Hohl Flute 8
Geigen 8
Octave 4
Geigen Principal 4
Wald Flute 4
Octave Quint 2 2/3
Super Octave 2
Harmonics IV
Mixture V
Sharp Mixture III
Contra Posaune 16
Posaune 8
Octave Posaune 4

Swell 23 (18)
Quintaton 16
Open Diapason 8
Lieblich Gedeckt 8
Viole d'Amour 8
Salicional 8
Vox Angelica 8
Principal 4
Lieblich Flute 4
Fifteenth 2
Twenty-Second 1
Sesquialtera II
Mixture V
Double Trumpet 16 *
Contra Oboe 16
Trumpet 8 *
Oboe 8
Vox Humana 8
Clarion 4 *
+ Schweller
+ Tremulant (außer *)

Solo 17 (15)
Contra Viole 16
Harmonic Flute 8
Viole d'Orchestre 8
Viole Céleste 8
Concert Flute 4
Viole Octaviante 4
Harmonic Piccolo 2
Cornet de Violes III
Contra Tuba 16 Ext., **
Double Clarinet 16 Ext.
Tuba Mirabilis 8 *, **
Tuba 8 **
Orchestral Trumpet 8 **
French Horn 8 **
Cor Anglais 8
Clarinet 8
Orchestral Hautbois 8
+ Schweller (außer *)
+ Tremulant (außer **)

Bombarde 17 (8)
Open Diapason 8
Principal 4
Fifteenth 2
Grand Cornet V
Mixture IV-VI
Bombarde 16
Contra Posaune 16 Tr. Great

Tuba Mirabilis 8 Tr. Solo
Posaune 8 Tr. Great
Trumpet 8
Octave Posaune 4 Tr. Great
Clarion 4

Pedal 13 (10)
Double Open Wood 32 Ext.
Open Diapason 16
Open Wood I 16
Open Wood II 16
Bourdon 16 Tr. Great
Geigen 16 Tr. Great
Viole 16 Tr. Solo
Principal 8
Bass Flute 8 Tr. Gt. Bd.
Fifteenth 4
Rohr Flute 4
Open Flute 2
Mixture IV
Double Ophicleide 32 Ext.
Tuba 16 Tr. Solo
Ophicleide 16
Contra Posaune 16 Tr. Great
Clarinet 16 Tr. Solo
Posaune 8 Tr. Great
Trumpet 8 Ext. Clar.
Octave Posaune 4 Tr. Great
Clarion 4

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