Renovated pipe organ to play again

March 28, 2017 by  

The pipe organ of the Second Presbyterian Church in Newark has undergone restoration, and is ready to play glorious music again.

The effort started in April and ended in December 2016. A previous renovation was undertaken early in the 1960s.

The church’s Music Director, Rick Black, is the organist, and the only person in the church who knows how to play the 2,200-pipe organ. Black was the one who noticed problems with the organ over two years ago. The valves in the pipes are made of leather, which was cracking and drying out. This led to notes playing longer than desired, or dead notes, and impacted the organ’s performance.

Bunn-Minnick Pipe Organs of Columbus evaluated the organ, and told the church it needed to be rebuilt. Since the church has an endowment, it was able to go ahead with the work without having to raise money. The cost of the renovation was about $400,000, and the church had $450,000 earmarked for the work. Refurbishing is expensive because much of the instrument is handmade, but it would cost $884,500 to replace the organ entirely.

In addition to restoring the mechanism, the restorers also refurbished the wood, to restore the organ to its original appearance.

Organizations like this can benefit by working with a flyer printing company on a handout that explains the history of the organ, and the renovations.