In 2012, a previously donated 16' Double Open Diapason was installed in the Moller Op. 7676 located in the Main Auditorium, adding to the diverse and rich palate in this unique organ.
In 2011, a restoration of the Moller Op. 7676 console was approved and completed by the Schudi Organ Company. In the process, the decision was made by Dr. Jesse Eschbach to maintain the mid-twentieth century electro-pneumatic system in place, making it a unique organ in the region that will continue to be an exemplary instrument for education and performance for many years to come.
College of Music receives $1.5 million for new organ
Ardoin-Voertman concert organ to be built by Wolff and Associates
DENTON (UNT), Texas — A new $1.5 million Voertman-Ardoin Memorial Fund created by Denton philanthropist Paul Voertman will support the installation of a new concert organ at the University of North Texas College of Music.
The Richard Ardoin-Paul Voertman Concert Organ will be installed in Winspear Hall, at the Murchison Performing Arts Center, which was originally conceived with an organ when the building was constructed in 1999.
“The College of Music is very grateful that Mr. Voertman has made this significant commitment, which will enable us to complete such an important part of the facility,” said James Scott, dean of the College of Music. “Having an outstanding pipe organ in Winspear Hall will make it possible to perform the symphonic repertory that calls for organ, as well as the large oratorios and cantatas for chorus and orchestra, which the college currently cannot perform with an appropriate instrument. The organ will serve many periods of the solo organ repertory as well.”
Construction of the Ardoin-Voertman concert organ was recently approved by the UNT System Board of Regents and installation is scheduled for completion in 2008.
After extensive consideration of a number of potential builders, the college selected internationally renowned Wolff and Associates, who are located in Laval, in the Canadian Province of Quebec. Recent Wolff and Associates projects include a respected, major organ in Houston and an organ installation at the University of Kansas, which has received worldwide attention.
“Designing and building the future organ for Winspear Hall will be an exciting project for us and we trust the result will be rewarding for the university and the musical community of the area as well,” Hellmuth Wolff said. “The organ’s sound will be favored by exceptionally fine acoustics. The acoustical setting, adjusted to its most reverberant mode, will allow the organ to sing out and to let the audience hear the voices in polyphonic music clearly.”
“There are usually three things that ought to be combined to make an organ project worthwhile: the space, the acoustics and the people. It seems all the good qualities are united in this project,” he said.
Positioned behind the choral terrace in Winspear Hall, the organ will be a fairly large three manual instrument of 55 stops, offering a powerful plenum, plenty of quiet registrations as well as colorful flutes and reeds, according to Wolff.
“As with most of our instruments, we draw from sources of the Classic and Romantic period and from different national schools of organ building. This organ will also be inspired by the great organs of the past and by the best work of our colleagues of the Old and the New World, from whom we have learned quite a few things in our craft,” he said.
The organ’s case, which will be painted to blend with the hall, also features the geometric shapes and angles of the hall with its pentagonal window behind the organ loft.
Except for the Swell division, the facade pipes reflect their respective keyboard divisions with their pipes standing behind the facade in the case. The keydesk is attached to the organ to favor a most direct mechanical linkage between the keys and the valves directing the wind to the pipes. The stops are drawn electrically and the most up to date electronic assistance devices will help the players with their registrations.
Note to Editors: Images of the organ are available in the image gallery at web2.unt.edu/news/ or by request from Kelley Reese at (940) 565-3993.
On April 19, 2004, organ performance majors of Jesse Eschbach presented the Southwest premiere of the recently published organ works of Louis Couperin. The recently acquired Ottman organ, built by Gene Bedient, served as the perfect instrument for Couperin’s music. Intended to serve the needs and musical requirements of French repertoire from the 17th and 18th centuries, the organ clearly sounds most “at home” when playing this music. Students performed a wide-ranging recital, illustrating all of the various genres comprising the new Couperin publication, and Eschbach presented a lecture focusing on the evolving Parisian organ of the seventeenth century and Louis Couperin’s musical response to it, specifically adapting fugal textures to the new solo timbres available on mid century instruments.
Now available -- Dr. Eschbach's extensively researched book on Cavaillé-Coll!
A Compendium of Known Stoplists by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll Paderborn: Verlag Peter Ewers, 2003
by Dr. Jesse Eschbach, Coordinator of Organ
Available through organ literature foundation as well as various music dealers
Also available -- Dr. Eschbach's newest CD!
Music from the Second Empire and Beyond
Recorded at the Cathedrale Saint-Jean, Perpignan, France
Music of Lemmens, Fessy, Franck, Couturier, and Gigout
Released on the Raven label