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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.

We’re delighted to announce the commissioning of our Op. 95 by Christ Church Lutheran in Minneapolis, Minnesota. One of the last works of celebrated Finnish architect Eliel Saarinen, the church building was declared a National Historic Landmark in 2009. Because of the sensitivity of the interior, the new organ will be placed in the original organ chamber, behind a grille. The organ retains several sets of Kimball and Casavant pipes from the previous instrument. Robert Farlee and Martin Seltz are the Cantors; Gregory Peterson is serving as consultant.

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Because of the impending retirement of our longtime colleague Kirk Russell, we are seeking an individual to fill his position as Business Manager. Please visit this page, where you’ll find the job description for this full-time position, as well as other details. If you are interested to learn more, please email Dobson Vice President John Panning (no phone calls, please).

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Our Op. 94 for St. Dunstan’s Episcopal Church in Carmel Valley, California, was completed on 28 October and first used for services on All Saints Day. Dr. Steven Denmark, the Director of Music, presented dedicatory recitals on Saturday 14 November.

The new instrument stands at the front of the church, which was designed in 1963 by parish member Mel Blevens of Holewinski, Blevens, Fedelem and Lukes Architects. The tonal design, a collaboration between organist Steve Denmark and Dobson, draws inspiration from 19th century French choir organs. Check out our page of construction photos.

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Though installation of our Op. 93 is not scheduled to begin until April 2017, construction of the instrument is already underway. In particular, great progress is being made in 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. The organ will be completed in the first part of 2018. The organ will be completed in 2018. In the wake of John Scott’s tragic death this past August, the program carries on under the team he so ably trained: Stephen Buzard as Acting Director of Music and Ben Sheen as Acting Organist (they exchange these positions after Christmas), and music administrator Laurel Scarozza.

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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

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