Orgelbau Kuhn

Kuhn Organ Builders Ltd, 2017

New organ

Windchests: slider chests
Key action: mechanical
Stop action: mechanical

Inauguration: 17.12.2017

Case design: Christoph Jedele (Spieltisch)
Voicing: Thierry Pécaut

former organ

© pictures Orgelbau Kuhn AG, Männedorf/Schweiz

portrait number 114670

Gstaad II/P/10
Switzerland, Berne
St. Niklaus Kapelle

Renovation of the organ in the small church in Gstaad

The Chapel of St. Niklaus in Gstaad was built in 1402 and stands in the middle of the village centre, which has been a traffic free zone ever since the bypass was opened.

The two manual organ was built in 1957 by organbuilders Kuhn with nine stops. It is situated above the main entrance to the church, and fits convincingly into the design of the interior. In 1957, the console was placed beneath the organ, rotated by 90 degrees. This concept does save space, but has two serious disadvantages: firstly, the organist can only hear the organ indirectly, and secondly, this arrangement requires an extraordinarily complicated, inaccessible register of the mechanical action.

In 2016, the parish decided to have the organ thoroughly renovated, which would involve more than the usual cleaning and repairs. From the start, it was clear that the external appearance of the organ should not be changed. There was however a desire to fundamentally improve the position of the console and the complicated key action. At the same time, the stoplist was to be extended by two additional stops.

The renovation was successfully completed at the end of November 2017. The design of the front of the organ, and all the interior pipes, were taken over from 1957. Two stops were added to the great organ: Quinte 2 2/3 ' and Octave 2 '. The organ now has 11 stops, spread across two manuals and pedal. The console, key action, windchests and wind supply are all completely new.

The console is now located to the right of the organ. The organist no longer sits beneath the organ, but in front of it. From this position, he or she has considerably more control over the sound, in that they hear the organ and the singing congregation much more clearly than from the former position. The key action consists of fine rods made of spruce, which rise visibly – as translucent trackers – from the console upwards into the organ. The whole entrance area has been architecturally enhanced by the new position of the console, as the wall paintings that were previously partly hidden are now once again shown wonderfully to their advantage.

Translation: RS 2017
 © Kuhn Organ Builders Ltd   Update 29.01.2018    info©