We are comprised of a diverse membership of people ranging from those who reminisce about the days of movie palace organs, to the young, who see the instrument as a very big computer or an i-phone on which their fingers fly as they turn out music that cannot be produced in any other way.
Some of us are engineers who devise ways to take old telephone switchboard type keying and re-configure it into miniaturized solid state controls.
Some of us are skilled at organ restoration.
Some of us are players of these marvelous instruments.
Some are excellent listeners of the lush, full sound of the orchestral voices represented by ranks of pipes and real percussion instruments.
But all of us are volunteers and apprentices who work to bring a nearly hundred-year old musical instrument into the current listening scene. Interestingly, a pipe organ may have evolved, but still is powered by air, exactly as it was hundreds of years ago.
The Theatre Pipe Organ or “unit orchestra” as it is sometimes called was so named because it represents one person playing all the instruments in an orchestra from one unit, the organ console.
Today, Theatre Organ music is heard as pre and post show entertainment, in pops concerts, and as the accompaniment for vintage 1920s silent films which are making a resurgence as an art form.
In addition to our love of the orchestral music of the Theatre Pipe Organ, we find lots of time for socialization. Friendships develop as a result of meetings, concerts and workshops, and many of us find ourselves dining, picnicking, boating, traveling, visiting museums and attending other types of musical programs with each other.
Several of our members have been recognized by the American Theatre Organ Society for their expertise in playing performance and in organ restoration. Read about their accomplishments at GSTOS Recognitions. In addition, two of our instruments have been given historic designations by ATOS.
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