St Jacobi Organ Tour


When I found out that St Jacobi has guided tours of the organ every Thursday I had to check it out. The tour that I participated in had a larger than usual turnout of around 20 to 30 people and it lasted a little over an hour. I loved the tour because our guide was very knowledgeable and she explained a lot about the history and the features of the organ. She also demonstrated the sounds of the different pipes and played us a demo song. The tour was in German but here’s what I think the tour guide said: The organ was built when Bach was 8 years old, so it is good for playing anything prior to Bach but after Bach the organ style changed and therefor it doesn’t sound so good on this particular organ. During World War II they dismantled the pipes and other pieces of the organ to store it in a bunker. When the organ was reassembled they used about 50% original parts and 50% new parts. The keyboards and registers are all new. There was something about another town having a 38 foot pipe and then in Hamburg they wanted to have a bigger pipe so they added it, but I didn’t understand that story completely. Some of the fancy shiny pipes on the outside are fake, and the real pipes are behind them and not so pretty.

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