Our next Program:
An Organ Transplant – The Journey of Aeolian-Skinner 1188
Date and Time TBA
When St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Richmond replaced Aeolian-Skinner Opus 1188 in the late 1990s, no one could have predicted its journey. It made its way to Reston, Virginia, where it got some needed updates to the console, and was reinstalled at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church while Chapter member Tom Bailey was organist. Several years later, St. Anne’s went a different direction and the organ again was offered for sale.
When I was a 1st year graduate student at Cleveland Institute of Music, odd Wilson was named Director of Music at Trinity Cathedral, Cleveland. Trinity has long been known for its musical tradition – with Edwin Arthur Kraft residing over the original Skinner organ, through the installation of the Flentrop organs in the 1970s. The original organ chamber was transformed into a choir rehearsal space in the early 2000s, but ample space for an installation could be found using just a part of that space. We found out about Opus 1188’s availability and a donor purchased the organ for the Cathedral in 2011. It was put into storage at Muller Pipe Organ Company in Croton, Ohio for nine years, until the Cathedral was able to secure the funds needed for a complete restoration and realizing several additions. (For those who don’t know, I serve as Tonal Director of Muller Pipe organ.)
Due to the pandemic, and the realities of organ installation, I don’t know exactly when I’ll be in Cleveland! However, when I am, I’ll lead a tour of the organ via Zoom – and perhaps pull Todd Wilson and John Muller into the mix to offer their insights for the project. Stay tuned for more details soon!