The people of St. Andrew’s are privileged to be supported in worship by wonderful musical instruments. The Karl Wilhelm tracker organ is located in the gallery and the Bösendorfer Imperial grand piano is played from the front of the nave.
The mechanical action organ was designed and built by Karl Wilhelm Inc. Organbuilders, of Mont St.-Hilaire, Québec. With its fifty stops and 71 ranks controlled by the organist via three manuals plus the pedal keyboard, it is one of the largest organs built by the firm in its production history.
In its concept and construction, the organ stays close to historical principles: it stands free in two cases of solid wood, which serve to blend and focus the sound, and the four divisions of the organ can immediately be distinguished; above the impost level of the main case, the pipes of the Grand-Orgue, flanked on either side the Pédale, with the exception of the Soubasse 32', which stands against the back wall of the Church to either side. Below the Grand-Orgue, just above the console, is the Positif division, and the Récit is housed in its own case behind the main case.
The mechanical playing action, which connects each key to the valve at the pipes via a delicate series of slender wooden strips (trackers) affords the organist very direct control over the pipes. The stop action -- the means of controlling which of the fifty sets of pipes play at a given time, is also purely mechanical. For the organist's convenience, two mechanical ventils are provided. The only electrical components in the instrument are the blower whcih provides wind and the lamp which lights the music.
Apart from the technical details, the most unusual characteristic of the organ is that it has been provided with stops which enable the organist to interpret very idiomatically the great French literature. In particular, the presence of cornet stops in all three manual divisions (three alone in the Grand-Orgue) plus the glorious French-style reeds in the Grand-Orgue (Trompette 8', Clarion 4', Voix Humaine 8') and the Positif (Cromorne 8') make possible the interpretation of earlier French music of the 17th - 18th centuries. The Récit division, with its battery of three reed stops, mirrors the development of the French organ in the 19th century and comes into play especially in interpreting music from that period onward.
The organ's fifty stops are comprised of 3.050 pipes, including the Rossignol stop. Most of the pipes are made of varying alloys of tin and lead and the 131 pipes made of wood include the thirty pipes of the Soubasse 32' which were incorporated from the Warren organ which occupied the same position in the church from 1892 to 1982. To ensure stability of tuning open pipes are cone-tuned and stopped pipes have their caps soldered shut.
The butternut wood carvings above the facade pipes are not solely ornamental but aid in the blending of the sound before it leaves the case. They were designed by Rosemarie Wilhelm and hand carved by Claude Duclos. Apart from the metal pipes, which came from Germany and Switzerland all components of the organ were made in the Wilhelm shop.
Adapted from notes written by Karl Wilhelm
|Bourdon||16'||Principal||8'||Dessus de flûte||8'||Soubasse||32'|
|Montre||8'||Bourdon||8'||Flûte à cheminée||8'||Montre||16'|
|Prestant||4'||Céleste T.C.||8'||Flûte à fuseau||4'||Flûte ouverte||8'|
|Flûte Conique||4'||Prestant||4'||Nazard||2 2/3'||Bourdon||8'|
|Grosse Tierce||3 1/5'||Flûte||4'||Quatre de Nazard||2'||Flûte||4'|
|Nazard||2 2/3'||Flageolet||2'||Doublette||2'||Cor de nuit||2'|
|Doublette||2'||Cornet III||2'||Tierce||1 3/5'||Fourniture IV||2 2/3'|
|Plein jeu IV||2'||Larigot||1 1/3'||Bombarde||
|Fourniture IV||1 1/3'||Basson||16'||Cymbale IV||1'||Trompette||8'|
|Cornet V c-d'''||8'||Hautbois||8'||Tremblant|
Couplers: Grand-Orgue à la Pédale, Récit à la Pédale , Positif à la Pédale, Récit au Grand-Orgue, Positif au Grande-Orgue
The recent acquisition of a Bosendorfer Imperial grand piano is an outstanding addition to the musical life of our community. Rich and resonant in tone, it speaks with ease, clarity, and remarkable beauty. It is adding new possibilities to our services, and is finding good use in both recitals and concerts.