ORGAN OF THE MONTH 73: July 2008

Emmanuel, Wylde Green
(Willis, 2002)

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Those of you with long memories are probably saying "Hasn't this instrument already featured as Organ of the Month?".  The answer is, well, yes and no!  The rebuilt organ by Henry Willis III was indeed featured as Organ of the Month 2, but this is Emmanuel's apse organ: a completely new instrument built at the same time as the relocation of the West End organ, playable from the main console, but situated behind the altar.  Incidentally, "west end" is a particularly apt description for the main instrument, for it was originally built for a church in Kensington!

The current interest arises from last month's fund-raising recital given by BOA member John Pryer, who revealed that he had influenced the design of the apse organ, basing it on a similar instrument with which he had become familiar earlier in his career.

Although much smaller than the main instrument, it is not only useful for accompanying the choir but also (as John demonstrated) for recital pieces, including antiphonal effects with the West End organ in his stunning finale: an improvisation on the Marsellaise.

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Last modified: June 28, 2008