Numerous craftspeople who are experts in these materials oversee a complex process which, depending on the scope of the project, can last from 2,000 to nearly 40,000 hours.
All Casavant Frères organs are designed and built in our workshops. The metal is melted on site; the wood is carefully chosen to create the different parts (windchest, structure, facade, wooden pipes...); our voicers listen to the instrument so that it can display the full range of its expressiveness, from the most hushed sounds to the most brilliant chords. At each stage, our various experts maintain a constant dialogue which results in close collaboration, essential to the success of each instrument.
With an average of more than twenty years of experience, Casavant craftspeople have learned to work on instruments of all sizes, from 500 pipes to more than 10,000, and have met many challenges related to musicality, technique and architecture over time. Through a system of apprenticeship, they share their unique know-how with their young counterparts, which combines mastery of ancestral techniques and a permanent desire for innovation.
Proposal by Guy Laramée for the public art competition at the Saint-Hyacinthe Convention Center, in honor of the 140th anniversary of pipe organ builder, Casavant Frères.
An organ is a bit like a convention center. Hundreds of pipes, each with a different height and timbre, are assembled in anticipation of music that will unite their destiny and legitimize their being-together.A Convention Center is a bit like an organ.
Congress participants from all backgrounds agree to come together, for a moment, to clarify their situation and their destiny.It's a very old organ. It appears to be 140 years old, but in fact it is over 140 million years old. The wind has always played this organ. The organ is this mountain that the wind has sculpted since the dawn of time, the wind is this music made possible by the stillness of the organ. The mountain is its home.The House of the Winds / Casa de los Vientos / Casa-Vent.
The main sanctuary of Rye Presbyterian Church is the home of a four-manual, French-style Casavant organ installed in 1982. Crawford Chapel was restored some years ago and now has excellent acoustics. The organ is installed in the existing choir loft, located in an elevated position on the side of the chapel.
This is our very first Inspiration Organ to be installed in the United States. The moveable console is placed on the main floor of the chapel.
Grace Episcopal Church is a beautiful historical church completed in 1883. The church’s interior is noteworthy for its vaulted wooden ceiling and its stained-glass windows. The installation of the new organ offered an excellent opportunity to also complete a major remodelling of the chancel, under the expert guidance of Terry Byrd Eason.
This significantly enhances flexibility for worship and music, as well as giving a better reflective surface for the sound of the choir and the organ to bloom through the room. The organ, which was designed to serve the Anglican liturgy, is contained in decorative casework that is stylistically based on the ecclesiastical Gothic architecture of the room.
The installation of a new organ at the historic First Congregational Church of Chatham, Massachusetts is part of the congregation’s 300th anniversary. To celebrate this milestone, the church embarked on an ambitious building project to provide additional meeting and office spaces, along with a good-size organ chamber. It is interesting to see how the plan evolved, from rebuilding the existing 1972 Casavant organ to a new three-manual instrument reusing some existing fluework.
Designing a 29-stop organ on three manuals represents an interesting challenge, as every stop needs to play its role effectively. Here, as the organ is used regularly for choral concerts, some seventy percent of the tonal resources will be under expression, including the solo Herald Trumpet 8’ and the Pedal Posaune 16’. The “caged rage” effect will be quite astounding in this historic church!
Knowing the director of music’s affection for older Casavant organs, we secured the pipework from a historic 1910 Casavant that had been stored in a church for many years. Tonally, the project is a bridge between the present and the past. It is an interesting challenging for our voicers to blend our current work with pipework that reflects the prevailing tastes of over 100 years ago.
Without creating a copy of a 1910 Casavant organ, we are inspired by this remarkable artistic period of our history to create a uniquely colourful instrument.Among other stops, the organ will include a Double Flute, Harmonic Flute, Tromba, Basson-Hautbois, Bell Clarinet, and Vox Humana. Visually, the design of the new organ case was approached like the organ had been installed at the time the church was built, to enhance the height of the chancel area.
This beautiful chapel was once home to an Estey organ installed in a small chamber, behind elegant carved casework.The new organ will be installed in the same chamber, and the mechanical console will be integrated into the original case.
For this project, we have the opportunity to tonally design the instrument with a meantone temperament, a first for us in a number of years.
Fitting eleven stops in this rather small chamber requires a disciplined approach to designing the instrument effectively, for optimal sound egress into the room and to making sure it is easy to tune.
St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas, is the largest Episcopal congregation in the USA. When the new church was built in 2004, the former church continued to be used for smaller services, etc.
As part of a major building project, the former church was gutted, reduced in size, and entirely rebuilt as a new chapel in the neo-Gothic style. For this project, we are reusing excellent Casavant pipework from the 1950s, which we had in our inventory, along with the beautiful Clarinet from the existing instrument. The organ will be installed in the existing organ chamber, and the new façade, designed by Casavant’s architect, Pierre Drouin, will be an exquisite blend of lacquered metal pipes and stained wood pipes with brass inserts.
Beijing is one of the most vibrant musical capitals in the world. Recitals, concerts, operas, music education, etc., draw an ever-growing number of music aficionados. The truly spectacular new hall of the China Philharmonic Orchestra, in the sought-after district of Sanlitun, was designed by MAD Architects of international repute.
The new four-manual organ, which was visually designed after the shape of a lotus flower, will be the recognizable signature of the concert hall. The first true French Symphonic organ to be installed in the Chinese capital, this instrument will for sure become one of the favourite concert hall organs in Asia.
The growing parish of Saint Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Omaha, Nebraska, needed to build a new 1400-seat church.In this project, we worked collaboratively with BCDM Architects and Kirkegaard Associates to design the new organ in three different spaces: a well-developed three-manual and pedal main organ in the large chamber located behind the reredos, the Antiphonal at the back of the Nave, and a small Ancillary division to support the choir beside the Sanctuary.
That way, we make sure the organ leads congregational singing effectively in this large building. Interestingly, the organ includes two solo reed stops, a Tuba Mirabilis under expression in the main organ and a Horizontal Trumpet in the Antiphonal.
The seat of the Bishop of Macau, the Cathedral of the Nativity of Our Lady is a historical building in the Baroque style. Designing a new organ for this magnificent space presented an interesting challenge. The main four-manual organ is installed at the back of the Sanctuary in two narrow cases framing the High Altar and stained-glass windows, with a horizontal Trompette pontificale in between the two cases.
The elaborate casework with carvings was designed and built by our craftspeople. The Antiphonal division, based on a Violonbasse 16’, is located between windows in the back gallery.
The Inspiration Organ
The Rubenstein Family Organ, Casavant Opus 3899
The Grand Orgue Pierre-Béique's 5th anniversary, Casavant Opus 3900