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For more than a quarter century, we have constructed fine pipe organs for churches, schools and private individuals. In every project, whether for religious or secular institutions, we strive to create timeless works of musical art that faithfully perform the literature, inspire the composer and improviser, and are a joy to both player and listener.

The School Sisters of Notre Dame will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the installation of Johnson & Son Opus 499 in their chapel at Our Lady of Good Counsel, Mankato, on Friday, April 22, 2016 at 7 p.m. Organists Kraig Windschitl, Christopher Stroh, and Jeffrey Patry will perform César Franck’s Three Chorals, famously recorded on Op. 499 by Thomas Murray and released by Nonesuch Records in 1975.

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We’re delighted to announce the commissioning of our Op. 96, a new instrument for Bruton Parish Church, in historic Williamsburg, Virginia. Founded in 1674, the parish worships in its 1715 church, which was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1970 and is one of the most recognizable structures of Colonial Williamsburg.

Bruton Parish Church has a lengthy organ history. The makers of the first organs, from 1756 and 1840, are unknown. At the dawn of the 20th century, the Hutchings-Votey Organ Co. provided a new instrument, some pipes of which were retained in Op. 968 of the Aeolian-Skinner Organ Co. That instrument, rebuilt on six occasions since its construction in 1937 and growing from 13 ranks to 105, is crowded into the attic, the east gallery of the church, the case of a 1785 organ by Samuel Green that was added in 1939, and the church tower. Faced with increasing mechanical unreliability and advised by several consultants that a new, smaller organ more advantageously placed would yield both musical and maintenance benefits, the parish undertook a search for an organ builder. That process came to its conclusion in February 2016 with the signing of a contract between Bruton Parish Church and Dobson.

The new organ will stand in the east gallery, above the reredos, in the space currently occupied by the Green organ case. The design of the new organ case takes its cue from the historic reredos, which was restored in 1939. The case will be painted the same putty-gray color as the reredos. The tin façade pipes and the carved pipe shades will be gilded. The Great and Positive divisions, and some pipes of the Pedal, will stand in the visible case. The Swell and largest pipes of the Pedal will be located immediately above the case and speak through the ceiling grilles. Because of architectural constraints, the organ will have electric action.

Installation of the organ is scheduled to begin in the fall of 2019. The Rev’d. Christopher L. Epperson is the Rector of Bruton Parish Church. Rebecca Davy is Music Director & Organist, and JanEl Will is Organist; James Darling is Choirmaster-Organist Emeritus.

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Construction of our Op. 93 for Saint Thomas Church in New York City is well underway. An important part of the project is the creation of carvings that will be a part of the new organ case. Across the chancel, Bertram Goodhue’s glorious case of 1913 will be fitted with new, speaking façade pipes. Installation will begin after Easter 2017, with completion approximate one year later.

In the wake of John Scott’s tragic and untimely death in August 2015, the program carries on this year under the team he so ably trained: Ben Sheen as Acting Director of Music and Stephen Buzard as Acting Organist, and music administrator Laurel Scarozza. John Scott’s successor, Daniel Hyde, takes up his duties at the 22nd Organist and Director of Music this summer.

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While the construction of new pipe organs is our bread and butter, we also undertake a variety of projects involving older instruments in the upper Midwest. You can find a list of completed restoration or rebuilding projects here.

The most significant such project on the books at the moment is the refurbishing and reinstallation of Casavant Op. 3105, originally completed in 1971 for the University of Iowa’s Clapp Recital Hall. Threatened with demolition along with the hall, the organ was eventually given by the demolition contractor to St. Andrew Presbyterian Church in Iowa City, which is building a new sanctuary that will accommodate the organ.

We recently completed restoration of the c. 1889 A.B. Felgemaker organ at St. Mary’s Church in Pierce City, Missouri. This 12-rank organ was built as Op. 504 for the First Presbyterian Church of Clearfield, Pennsylvania, and was later moved to Pierce City by Midwestern organ builder Hugo Stahl. Our work included the restoration of the double-rise bellows.

Earlier this year, we completed restorative repairs to the 1883 Moline organ at St. Mary’s Church in Iowa City, the largest remaining organ by that builder.

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Six years ago, in celebration of our company’s 35th anniversary, we made an online exhibit of some of Lynn Dobson’s drawings. One of the most highly-regarded case designers of his generation, Dobson has proved to be equally at home in modern or historically-inspired idioms. Lynn A. Dobson: Drawings & Projects presents a selection of work from 1974–2009, and includes unrealized designs as well as built instruments.

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Dobson Pipe Organ Builders, Ltd.
200 North Illinois Street • Post Office Box 25
Lake City, Iowa 51449 USA
+1 712 464 8065
info@dobsonorgan.com

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