Organbuilding is not just the physical act of making an instrument with a set of pipes, action and wind system. The actual basis for the concept is founded on a philosophy of the craft. What types of sounds are used and how are they blended? What sort of music is capable of being played on the organ? Is it a question of an historical model or is it an avant-garde approach?
Here are some of my thoughts on organbuilding philosophy. Small Organs – A Perspective
What type of instrument is most suitable for a particular place and purpose? Budget limitations will often lead people to assume that any pipe organ at all would not be a feasible option. Restoration Philosophy discusses some of the options available at the time of a rebuild or restoration.
In 2001, Simon was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to study modern organbuilding in the U.S.A. This involved visiting 18 organbuilders, playing 75 instruments, participating in the O.H.S. Convention in North Carolina and a String Voicing workshop in Chicago. Here is his U.S.A. Churchill Report.
A visiting writer and organ afficionado reported on Queensland organbuilding from a German perspective four years ago in an interview with Simon. Whilst much has progressed with our firm, including the new workshop, it is still an interesting view of what we do and who we are.
My late father, William Pierce. B.A., FRCO, FTCL, FRSCM, L.Mus.A, was a professional organist, and a strong influence on the development of my attitude towards the organ. His Thesis on Organbuilding in New South Wales was writtten in 1953 when he was at Sydney University. It is an interesting historical document as it was written in 1953 before the organ historical movement had any impetus. We have tried to keep the flavour of this type-written document by using the layout and spellings of the originals.