Thursday, 28 November 2019

keydesk and console

A little sad to have read earlier in the week that the future of another local speciality museum might be in jeopardy, I decided it was time to finally make the time to visit a nearby institution whose fate might also be in question should it not attract enough patronage, and I was glad that I did.

Housed in the fifteenth century Gothic Schloß Hanstein—the manor originally called Kemenate that remains as testament to the past prosperity and importance of Ostheim vor der Rhön, the Orgelbaumuseum presents over nine hundred years of pipe organ history from the court of Charlemagne onward, honouring the nearly four-hundred-year tradition of pipe organ expertise, innovation and manufacture specific to this area.
 There are two factories in town associated with the museum that outfit and offer maintenance services for churches and other venues and it’s a matter of pride to expect that whenever there’s any news having to do with the instrument, installation or repair work, the institution is involved and gets a mention.
There are reproductions of workshops from different eras that illustrate the technical development and mechanics of performance and fidelity, which really makes one appreciate the scope and skill of craftsmanship, and quite a few antique units on display—including a few models that one can play and learn about how the sound is produced and modified. The miniaturisation and mobility that delivered the box organ for use in private homes is also pretty astounding. Try if you can to get out and patronise your local institutions to let them know that they are appreciated.