Thursday, October 04, 2007

Baltimore Cathedral to Rededicate Organs

This little bit of news comes from a friend from my Baltimore days:

On Sunday, October 28 at the 12:30pm Mass, the two organs at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, which were built by Moeller in the 1950's and recently restored by the Schantz Organ Co., will be re-dedicated. His Excellency the Most. Rev. Edwin F. O'Brien, Archbishop of Baltimore, will be the celebrant.

To mark this occasion, Louis Vierne's Missa solenelle will be sung. This is the perfect piece for this cathedral's grand acoustics. The building has a seven or eight second reverberation when empty. In any case, it is an acoustically challenging yet musically rewarding place to play.

When these two organs were originally installed by Moeller, they were the first in the United States to be connected via a huge jumble of cables, which allows the organist to play both sets of pipes, front and back, from either console.

Just the other day, when watching the installation of Archbishop O'Brien, I heard a wonderful 8' sound that I never remembered from the organ--a full, colorful principal. Then I heard that the restoration had been completed. I can't wait to hear what this instrument sounds like.