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News from the Builders. May 2006

20 May 2006


Organ Australia - News from the Builders:


South Island Organ Co Ltd, New Zealand by John Hargraves


Dilworth Boy’s School, Auckland:  We have just completed a major rebuild of the 3 manual 1959/76 Geo. Croft war memorial organ in St Patricks Chapel to celebrate the centenary of the School. Features of the project were a complete overhaul of the existing organ, provision of a new Peterson ICS-4000 electrical transmission and capture system, the addition of a new 5 rank (plus Pedal Bourdon) west-end antiphonal division encased on a new platform built over the Baptistry and new 4’ and 2’ flutes for the Swell and Great divisions. The organ now comprises 48 stops playable from a drawstop console attached to the south chancel chamber, housing the unenclosed Choir and part of the Pedal division. The north side chancel chamber accommodates the Great, Swell and remainder of the Pedal division.

The new specification is as follows:

Great – Contra Dulciana16 (Ch), Open Diapason 8, Stopped Diapason 8, Dulciana 8 (Ch), Principal 4, Harmonic Flute 4, Twelfth 2 2/3, Fifteenth 2, Flautino 2 (HF), Mixture II, Trumpet 8, Clarion 4 (Tpt).

Swell (Expressive) – Violin Diapason 8, Rohr Flute 8, Salicional 8, Voix Celeste 8, Gemshorn 4, Lieblich Flute 4, Piccolo 2 (LF), Mixture III, Contra Fagotto 16, Trompette 8, Tremulant.

Choir – Chimney Flute 8, Dulciana 8, Spitz Octave 4, Dulcet 4 (Dlc), Nazard 2 2/3, Flageolet 2, Tierce 1 3/5, Trumpet 8 (Gt), Clarion 4 (Gt), Tremulant.

Antiphonal – Open Diapason 8, Hohl Flute 8, Principal 4, Fifteenth 2, Festival Trumpet 8, Pedal Bourdon 16.

Pedal – Open Diapason 16, Sub Bass 16, Bourdon 16 (Ch), Octave 8 (OD), Bass Flute 8 (SB), Quint 10 2/3 (SB), Choral Bass 4 (OD), Octave Flute 4 (SB), Trombone 16 (Tpt), Trumpet 8 (Gt), Clarion 4 (Gt).

Couplers - Swell to Great, Swell to Choir, Choir to Great, Great to Pedal, Swell to Pedal, Choir toPedal, Swell Octave, Swell Sub Octave, Swell Unison Off, Antiphonal off Choir, Antiphonal on Great, Antiphonal on Swell, Antiphonal on Pedal.

Combination Pistons - 5 x Divisional to Great, Swell, Choir, Pedal. 3 x Divisional to Antiphonal, 10 x General, General Cancel, Piston Set, (Sequencer) Next, Last, Restore, (Reversibles) Swell to Great, Choir to Great, Swell to Choir, Swell to Pedal,

Great to Pedal, Choir to Pedal, Antiphonal on Great, Antiphonal on Swell, Antiphonal on Pedal, Antiphonal off Choir, MIDI to Great, MIDI to Swell, MIDI to Choir, MIDI to Pedal.

Special Switches - Great & Pedal Piston Coupler, Generals on Div. Toe Pistons.

ICS-4000 Features - Control Display Unit with clock, Transposer, Multiple Memory Levels (20 levels per Organist Folder), 6 Named Organist Folders + 2 Guest Organist Folders, Password Lockout, Built-in Record/Playback, USB Drive, Clear/Copy Utilities, Song Lists, Programmable Piston Sequencer.




Holy Trinity Cathedral, Auckland: For the third time in its 37 year life we recently moved the detached console of the 1969 Harrison & Harrison organ from its second home in the loft above the Chancel Choir to the Bridge between the new Nave and the Chancel. Both positions were too elevated to bring in portable lifting equipment so the massive console had to be dismantled to a point where it could be manhandled from one location to the other. The 600-wire cables were cut in the Crypt, pulled up from each end and drastically shortened because the console is now located adjacent to the organ chamber instead of the other side of the Cathedral. The Cathedral Choir has relocated behind the Nave Altar to facilitate the new Worship in the Round liturgy that has been adopted and the new arrangement is considered a great improvement.


Wesley College, Clunes: A decision is now very close as to when the Bluestone Church, Clunes organ will be returned to Australia and where it will go until the Church’s restoration and redevelopment as a performing Arts Centre has been completed in about 18 month’s time. In the meantime the restored organ graces our factory and gives pleasure to visitors and tour groups.


Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Verbrugghen Hall: In February we took the opportunity to do some extra maintenance on the 3-manual Pogson/SIOC organ to fine-tune the mechanical action regulation. In April I had the rare pleasure of hearing the organ in recital, played by 3 senior Con. organ students, Sarah Kim (who recently graduated with honours and was awarded the University of Sydney Medal), James Smith and Andrej Kouznetsov. Simply splendid - just a pity that this organ is not more accessible.


St George’s Cathedral, Perth: The Cathedral is currently undergoing a major refurbishment programme including provision of a new Welsh slate roof. We are adding two more electric couplers (Swell to Positive and Choir to Great) to the West-end Smenge organ and adding a Pedal Principal 8 rank to the East-end Smenge organ.


St Patrick’s Basilica, Fremantle:  Patrick Elms has recently releathered several of the reservoirs in this organ dating from the 1960 Gunstar rebuild of the original 1890’s Bishop organ. These were not considered a priority in 1997 when we rebuilt the organs to a massive programme of works. The Basilica is currently planning a conservation programme to restore and protect the limestone building from water damage. The west-end of the Basilica is most affected and special protection and cleaning of the organ will be required.


University of Western Australia, McGillivray Organ, Winthrop Hall: We are pleased to announce that we have been awarded the contract to rebuild the 1964 J W Walker organ in Winthrop Hall. The 47 stop 3-maual organ will be restored with some additions, a new Peterson ICS-4000 electrical transmission and capture system and an improved pipe layout on a deepened platform to overcome difficulties of maintenance and tuning. Additions include a 32’ Contra Trombone for the Pedal, a Vox Humana and Vox Angelica for the Choir (which is being restored to an expressive division), a Clarion for the Great, a Bourdon for the Swell and independent 8 and 4 Flute foundation stops for the Positive division. The work is planned for completion in early March 2008 in time for the annual graduation ceremonies.

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