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Definitions. Manual A keyboard played by the hands.  All instruments also have a pedalboard, which is the keyboard played by the feet. Rank A set of pipes of a particular tone color, one for each note of the keyboard.  Stop A knob or tab on the organ console that turns on a set of pipes.

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Definitions

Manual

  • A keyboard played by the hands.  All instruments also have a pedalboard, which is the keyboard played by the feet.

  • Rank

    • A set of pipes of a particular tone color, one for each note of the keyboard. 

  • Stop

    • A knob or tab on the organ console that turns on a set of pipes.

  • Register (Independent Stop)

    • An independent speaking stop that has its own pipes that are not "borrowed" from any other stops.

  • Borrowed Stop

    • A stop that does not have its own pipes, but rather reuses pipes from an independent stop (register).

  • Total Stops

    • The total number of speaking stops on the organ, whether independent or borrowed.


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    The American Pipe Organ

    The Centennial Organ




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    The Centennial Organ

    • Built in 1876 by Hook and Hastings, Boston and located in St. Joseph’s Old Cathedral in Buffalo, New York

    • Built for the great Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia and was one of two large instruments in the hall

    • Used for recitals by leading organists


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    Hook and Hastings

    • The Exposition closed in November, 1876 and St. Joseph’s Cathedral bought the instrument

    • The original playing action was replaced in 1925 but the remainder is intact

    • The instrument was restored in 1975-76


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    W. Eugene Thayer (1838-1889)

    • Thayer opened a studio in Boston in 1875

    • Published a 5-volume course, “The Art of Organ Playing”

    • Variations on the Russian National Hymn, Op. 12, opens the study


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    Variations on the Russian National Hymn

    • Russian National Hymn, “God Preserve the Tsar” was composed by Alexis Lvov in 1833 and served, until the revolution, as the Russian national anthem (it was also used in Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture

    • Thayer composedfive variations on the theme


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    Thayer: Variations on the Russian National Hymn, Op. 12

    • Theme

    • Variation 1 for “organ tone”

    • Variation 2 for strings and flutes

    • Variation 3 introduces the oboe solo stop

    • Variation 4 soft strings and flutes

    • Variation 5 for full organ featuring the pedals


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    THE MIGHTY WURLITZER


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    Hope-Jones Unit Orchestra

    • The theater organ was invented around 1900 by Robert Hope-Jones

    • The theater organ is a collection of colorful, distinctive, and powerful voices

    • It was developed to replace the symphony orchestra used to accompany silent films

    • The “Hope-Jones Unit Orchestra”


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    The Wurlitzer Theater Organ

    • Rudolph Wurlitzer bought the Hope-Jones patents in 1910

    • The era of theater organs then began around 1910

    • By 1927 there were 63 firms building organs and they produced about 2500 instruments

    • Sound movies were introduced in 1929 (The Jazz Singer) and it was the end for the theater organ


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    The Phantom of the Opera

    • 1925 starring Lon Chaney and Mary Philbin

    • The re-release of the film in 1929 with talking sequences foretold the end of the theater organ as the voice of the silent films


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    Wurlitzer

    • In 1942 the War Production Board ordered the organ industry to convert to defense work and organ factories produced glider parts, various metal work, and coffins

    • Wurlitzer stopped making organs in 1943


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    Four of the World’s Largest Pipe Organs are in the United States

    • Wanamaker Organ, Philadelphia

      • Murry M. Harris, 1904, 28,482 pipes

    • Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey

      • Midmer-Losh Op. 5550, 1929, 33,114 pipesMuch of it does not work

    • First Congregational Church, Los Angeles, California

      • E. M. Skinner Opus 856, 1931, over 20,000 pipesThis is the largest church organ

    • USMA Cadet Chapel, West Point, New York

      • M. P. Mohler, 1911, 20,142 pipes


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    Wanamaker Organ States

    • Located in Lord and Taylor Department Store, Philadelphia

    • 6 manuals, 461 ranks, 396 registers, 28,482 pipes


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    Wanamaker States

    • In 1911 the largest organ in the world (from the St. Louis World's Fair in 1904) was inaugurated in the Grand Court. The building was dedicated on December 30 by President William H. Taft

    • In 1980 The Wanamaker Organ becomes the first pipe organ to be designated a National Historic Landmark

    • Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition - The Great Gate of Kiev


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    Convention Hall States

    • 7 manuals; 449 ranks; 337 registers; 852 stops; 33,114 pipes

    • The Sounds

      • Toccata in d minor (Bach)


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    First Congregational Church States

    • First Congregational Church

      • 5 manuals; 346 ranks; 233 registers; 265 stops; over 20,000 pipes


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    USMA Cadet Chapel States

    • 4 manuals; 325 ranks; 576 stops; 20,142 pipes

    • The Sounds: “Veni Creator”


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