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Celebrating the pipe organ, the King of Instruments

Mailbag: “To be Seen and Heard”

March 22, 2011

Dear Michael,

I very much enjoy "Pipe Dreams", listening on my little Radio Shack portable radio (with a surprisingly nice speaker). I also enjoy seeing photos of the organs as you announce them, albeit rather speedily, but enjoyable nevertheless. Our local station is the all-classical WGUC.
My wife and I had the great privilege of hearing a 30 minute recital on the great organ in Chartres Cathedral in 2002. Our being there at the time of the recital was pure coincidence but what a treat!! Our St. Mary's Hyde Park, Cincinnati organist, Joe Santangelo, said the bass pipes are 65 feet long, which explained why the building vibrated when the pipes were played. The organist was a Spanish priest who was touring at the time.




I am glad you are enjoying PIPEDREAMS on your little radio. Some of my first experiences of organ music ‘over the air’ were transmitted through the tiny speaker of a transistor portable (remember those?).
Chartres is a wonderful place. Your organist was not quite correct, insofar as the largest of the pedal pipes (in the extreme wings of the case) are only @32’ in speaking length…though they make a tone that vibrates at @16 cycles per second.
Visiting historic churches and only seeing their pipe organs is always a disappointment for me…which is why we do our PIPEDREAMS Organ Tours, as we are guaranteed to see, hear, and often also play upon those instruments. It is an amazing treat. Southern France Tour 2010
Happy listening!




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