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  • organ solesmes

The Organ

The organ loft at the back of our abbey church first contained a Charles Verschneider organ (1857) and then a Gonzalez organ inaugurated in 1934.

The current organ is by the Strasbourg based organ builder Curt Schwenkedel. This is a mechanical traction 39-stop organ, inaugurated by Gaston Litaize on 22 October 1967. It belongs to the generation of neo-Baroque instruments that loosely imitate old north European organs.

This organ was designed to showcase music featuring great contrasts, such as Buxtehude's preludes. The organ has sharply contrasting sound divisions: a delicately coloured Positif, a Grand Orgue drawing on very sophisticated main stops and a light, airy Récit. The isolated pedal turrets come from the north European model. Some stops (e.g. the very old French cornet stop and trumpet on the Récit) are suitable for different types of music. The organ was harmonised by Laurent Steinmetz. This ‘plein-vent’ harmonisation (pipes wide open at the base) helps give the manuals a responsive touch.

The pipes have been partly modified on several occasions: by Pierre Chéron in 1977, by Denis Lacorre in 2009 and by Jean-Marie Tricoteaux in 2010.