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Organ

Our OrganSt. John’s is well served by two very fine instruments. At the centre of music in worship is the new Casavant organ, installed in 2005. Casavant Frères Ltd. of Saint Hyacinthe, Quebec had installed a two manual pipe organ in 1954 but it was completely destroyed in the fire of 2001.

The 2005 Casavant Organ, Opus #3845, has 1816 pipes compared to the 1954 organ with 1296 pipes. There are more pipes in the new organ mostly because of the more developed upperwork, including the Great Mixture, Swell Plein Jeu and small stops that will make the organ more colorful, eg. the Nazard 2 2/3’ and the Tierce 1 3/5 ‘in the Swell.

The design of the new organ was inspired by the stop list of the previous 1954 Casavant organ, and well designed for the Anglican liturgy. It features a large Swell division with sixteen-foot flue and reed stops, a complete plenum based on an eight-foot Diapason, a set of strings, a cornet decompose (with Nazard and Tierce), and a reed chorus. The Great division also features a complete plenum, flutes, a Trumpet and a soft Gemshorn. The Pedal Organ provides a solid foundation with three independent sixteen-foot stops, plus principals and flute. The Great division is installed in the left chamber, and the Swell and Pedal Organs are installed in the right chamber, where there is more height.

In order to have the appearance of the organ relate to the architecture of the restored church, the façade pipes are stenciled using colors and decorative patterns found elsewhere in the room. This practice was frequently employed by North American organ builders when working in nineteenth century era buildings and is an ideal way to integrate the organ visually in to the Carpenter Gothic style of the restored church.

Also housed in the church is a beautiful C7 Yamaha grand piano. Not only is the instrument suitable for Sunday worship but used frequently for various concerts and for Symphony Nova Scotia.