For the opening concert of Music at Trinity’s 2023/2024 concert series, we will celebrate the splendid instrument that the renowned organ builder Casavant Frères installed in Trinity Anglican Church and was dedicated in 1963. The concert series resumes on September 23rd at 4 pm and a freewill offering grants admission to the event which will be performed by the Music Director Fabien Tousignant.
History of the Organs at Trinity
The first Trinity pipe organ was built by the Woodstock Pipe Organ Builders, and dedicated by the Right Reverend J.C. Roper, Bishop of Ottawa, on October 23, 1930.The Rector was the Reverend Robert Turley. Miss Natalie Frerichs was the Organist and Choir Director.
Less than 17 years later, on March 19, 1947, this organ was totally destroyed by the church fire. Soon after the reopening of the Church in 1948 an organ fund was started by the choir. In the meantime, a Hammond Electric Organ was in use. In January 1962, the Organ Fund having reached a total of over 6000 dollars, the Vestry requested the Churchwardens to look into the purchase of a new pipe organ. At a special vestry meeting on June 20th of that year it was decided to appeal for further pledges and donations. By October 22nd a meeting of the Vestry decided to award a contract to Casavant Frères for the organ and for the structural changes necessary in the Chancel. The Vestry also chose to make the instrument a memorial to those who gave their lives in the service of their country. In recognition of past services, a special key for the new organ was presented to Miss Frerichs by the Rector, Churchwardens, and the Organist and Choir Director. Miss Frerichs served as Trinity’s Organist and Choir Director for an astonishing 47 years.
The new pipe organ, dedicated by Bishop Reed on June 16, 1963, to the Glory of God in memory of those members of the armed forces who gave their lives for their country, is a replacement of the 21-rank instrument which was destroyed in the church fire of March, 1947.The organ at present consists of 23 stops and has a total of 1728 pipes. The organ has been designed for voicing the pipes on low wind pressures to closely duplicate the true organ tones of the organs built during the 17th and 18th centuries. The chancel of the church has been extensively modified to display the new organ in three arches, thus enhancing the classical design by allowing full release of the tone while revealing the functional beauty of the handmade pipes. The new organ was built by Casavant Frères Limited of St-Hyacinthe, Québec, to specifications drawn up by Mr. Raymond L. Barnes, Ottawa Representative, in consultation with Mr. Lawrence Phelps, Casavant’s Tonal Director. The installing and tonal finishing were carried out by Mr. Barnes and his assistant Mr. John Fyall. Gerald Wheeler (then organist at St-Matthew’s Anglican Church) played the inaugural recital.
One can expect a varied program for the September 23rd recital with music of J.S. Bach, L. Boëllmann, Rachel Laurin and more. These concerts are approximately 1hour in duration without intermission following by light refreshments. We hope you can join us for some lovely music.
This organ recital is part of Music at Trinity and will be presented at Trinity Anglican Church at the corner of Bank and Cameron (entrance at Harvard) on Saturday September 23, 2023 at 4pm. Freewill offering.
Featured in the September 2023 OSCAR.