Local residents will have another opportunity to get a preview look at a 15-ton organ being installed in Christ Church, 141 East Avenue.
From 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 29, visitors can attend an open house to hear how the organ sounds and see the painting and gilding of the organ case.
The organ is approximately 25 feet wide and 24 feet high and will have 2,000 pipes when completed. It sits on a balcony 12 feet above the sanctuary floor. The installation and voicing/tuning of the pipes began last fall, and the organ will be played during the open house. The painting of the organ case and application of gold leaf onto the organ carvings began in January. Construction will be completed in the fall and the organ will be dedicated in October.
Though new, the organ is built after a rare and historic organ built in 1776 in Lithuania. The organ installation project in Christ Church is part of the Eastman Rochester Organ Initiative (EROI) at the Eastman School of Music, a long-range project to make Rochester a global center for organ research and performance by assembling a collection of new and historic organs. When completed, the organ will be used for teaching, practice, and public concerts by Eastman School students and faculty and other guest musicians and also for services at Christ Church. The instrument will be named the Craighead-Saunders Organ in honor of two legendary Eastman faculty organists: Professor Emeritus David Craighead and the late Russell Saunders.
Master organ builder Munetaka Yokota of the Göteborg Organ Art Center in Sweden is voicing the organ pipes, and organ builder Monika May of Germany is painting the organ case. May was involved in the restoration and installation of the Italian Baroque organ in the Memorial Art Gallery, which was also an EROI project.
A snowstorm during an open house earlier this month prevented many interested residents from attending, and organ project directors scheduled another event for the public after receiving a large number of inquiries.
# # #
2 to 5 p.m.
Open House to see and hear the organ being installed in Christ Church.
141 East Avenue