Here you will find the news items of the year gone by.
The grand project in Hamburg dictated the regime in our workshops during 2011 and the first half of 2012. Renovation works in the church still delay delivery and assembly in St. Catherine's Church until next September. In the meantime we are finishing the last few organ parts and are continuing work on voicing, in order to save some voicing time in Hamburg next year. The organ is now planned to be fully ready by May 2013.
For information see also http://www.stiftung-johann-sebastian.de/index.php?id=10
We filled the first half of 2012 with a great many maintenance projects and some larger projects:
- Restoration of the Vermeersch-organ in Beringen, Belgium (1856), in cooperation with Belgian organ builder Stan Arnauts.
- Revision of the windsupply and an extensive cleaning and maintenance project in the Jakobikirche in Lübeck. Four new bellows, reconstruction of the entire wind supply, cleaning of the pipes and extensive voicing works will have to provide an optimal sound. A 32' Untersatz will be added as a foundation of the sound.
- In Lisbon Cathedral the big Flentrop organ from 1964 is undergoing cleaning and revision, in order to bring it back in optimal conditions, technically as well as tonally.
- A new study organ is built for a customer in the United Kingdom, comparable with four organs we built in recent years.
- For a fairly recently built 3-manual organ in the neighbourhood of Stavanger, Norway (built by a Danish organ builder) we are renewing the entire tracker action (console, roller boards etc.).
- The Reichner-organ in the Oude Kerk of Rijswijk as been extended with a Pedal division, with its own wind supply and wooden organ pipes on the roof of the main organ case.
Preparations and drawing work are being done for our next organ to be delivered in Norway (see design on the right), the next project to be taken on in our workshops.
- In 2011 we delivered some important restoration projects in Friesland: the second and final stage of the restoration of the Hinsz-organ in Harlingen, and historical organs in Burgwerd and Beetsterzwaag.
- In London we replaced the metal Subbas 16' in the Van Leeuwen-organ in the Dutch Church at Austin Friars with a new, wooden Subbas stop.
- In a newly built church from the Gereformeerde Gemeente in Middelharnis we placed the Flentrop organ built 1971 for the Vredeskerk in Krommenie which was torn down some years ago.
- Several partial restorations and maintenance projects were performed, partly under the new governmental regulations for maintenance of monumental organs, like the Walcker- organ in the Martinikerk Doesburg, the Eglise Wallone in Amsterdam, the Corneliuskerk in Limmen, Doopsgezinde Kerk Beverwijk and e.g. the organs of the Amsterdam Conservatory of Music.
- And, last but certainly not least, we restored the Mitterreither/Flentrop organ in the School Hall of Eton College, Windsor.
Since the end of 2010 various projects have been delivered or are nearing their completion:
- The new organ for Sandefjord, Norway
- Restoration of the organ in the Hervormde church of Sprang (1728-1804 Houben/Geerkens)
- Restoration of the organ in the Hervormde church of Zunderdorp (Goldschmeding 1907)
- Relocation of the Naber-organ (1853) from the Lutheran church in Deventer to the Hervormde church of Wilp
- Restoration of the Merklin-organ (1861) in the San Salvatorchurch in Wieze, Belgium
- Restoration of the Niehoff-organ case and facade pipes in the Westerkerk of Enkhuizen
- Partial restoration of the Van Oeckelen-organ (1861) in the Grote kerk of Steenwijk
- Restoration of the Van Dam-organ (1856) in the Hervormde church of Beetsterzwaag
- Repairs on the Ypma-organ (1866) in the Roman Catholic church of 't Zand.
Under construction and in preparation:
- Harlingen, Grote kerk - tonal restoration to the situation-Hinsz 1776. Voicing of the flue stops is almost ready; reconstruction of the reed stops is on hand in the pipe workshop.
- Burgwerd, Herv. kerk - restoration of the Schwartzburg - organ (1735-36) to the original one-manual composition. Technically completed, voicing to be done in May/June.
- Beringen (Belgium), Pietersbandenkerk - restoration of Vermeersch-organ from 1856, in cooperation with Belgian organ builder Stan Arnauts.
- The big project for St. Catherine's church in Hamburg was started
up more than half a year ago now. The main organ case has been erected
in our assembly hall; most of the flue pipes for Great, Bovenwerk and
Brustwerk are ready and also wind chests, bellows etc., console and
further tracker action parts are almost ready. The pedal division, to
be housed in two towers, will be built later this year.
A separated project is the manufacturing of all the wood carving, to be executed in Germany but for which Flentrop prepares the necessary wooden parts.
- And last but not least: in Eton College (Windsor) we are overhauling the Flentrop/Mitterreither organ in the School Hall next summer.
On 28 September 2010 Hans Steketee passed away. He succeeded Dirk Flentrop in 1976 as Director of the company; a task he fulfilled until his retirement in 1998. He had great influence on the development of the company and its philosophy. We honor him with deep respect.
An extended obituary will follow.
- The new organ for Sandefjord (Norway) is nearing its completion in the workshop. After prevoicing it will be dismantled and shipped, and the start of assembly on location is scheduled for 31 August.
- Various restorations and reconstruction works are on hand, in different stages of completion:
In The Netherlands restorations in Sprang (Houben / Geerkens 1728-1804), Harlingen (Hinsz 1776 - fluepipes), Enkhuizen (Niehoff organ case plus facade pipes), Burgwerd (Schwartzburg 1736), Zunderdorp, Herv. kerk (delivered by Goldschmeding 1907), Marrum (Hillebrand 1831 - pipework and voicing) and Wilp (Naber 1853 - purchased from Deventer Lutheran Church).
And in Belgium two restorations: Wieze (Merklin 1861) and Beringen (Vermeersch-orgel 1856, in cooperation with Stan Arnauts).
- For our major project for the next few years, the organ in St. Catherine's church in Hamburg, all preparations and research are done and the manufacturing of the organ parts is being started up.
The new organ (26 stops) for Christ Church in Chelsea, London has been delivered early 2010, and was inaugurated in June. This organ replaces the, organ built in 1779 for St. Michael's Church in Queenhithe and moved to Christ Church in 1876. Having been thoroughly adapted in 1890 and 1957, it had become exhausted and unplayable.
A number of stops that remains from the 18th century and the old organ facade provided the basis for the design, and are incorporated in the new instrument. Advisor to this project was Ian Bell.
The new organ found its place on the gallery of the northern aisle, adjacent to the transept.
The stoplist comprises a Great with 11 stops, Positiv with 9 stops and a Pedal division with 6 stops. 4 Reed stops will be included, a tremolo for the Positiv and 3 free adjustable combinations.
The key- and stop actions are mechanically throughout.
The new management (Frits Elshout and Erik Winkel) has taken hold of
the company firmly, although Cees van Oostenbrugge is dearly missed
every day. Some shifting has taken place in the staff, including
replacement of two employees (secretary Erica Hoorn and tuner Jos
Min) because of retirement.
In our workshops some new employees have been drafted, in order to deliver the many projects in our portfolio timely and in compliance with our quality standards.
In our workshops we are working on (apart from the Chelsea project)
restorations of organs in Wieze (Belgium) and Sprang (Netherlands) and
a new Pedal division for an organ in Heemstede (Netherlands). Technical
preparations are being done for the projects in Sandefjord (Norway) and
- Recently or almost delivered are projects in Rotterdam (Concert Hall De Doelen), Bennekom (cabinet organ), Nieuw-Loosdrecht (removal from a church in Zaandam), Hoorn (extention of Pedal Division), Chicago (repair of fire damage) and Bornem (Belgium, restoration).
- Stored in our workshops and for sale are two Flentrop organs from around 1970, made for Krommenie (NL) and Hamm (DE).
The newly reconstructed Ruckwerk is finished but for the assembly of one of the Cymbelsterns. It has been inaugurated in the Easter weekend in 2009. Since the beginning of 2009 it was already in use in church services and concerts.
On that occasion organist and Music Director Andreas Fischer presented the first CD recordings of the organ.
The first stage of the reconstruction of the great organ
comprised of the entire drawing and preparation works, and the building
of the Ruckwerk. The second stage, the main case with Hauptwerk,
Oberwerk and Brustwerk, has been commissioned earlier in 2009. The
Pedal division with its 2 towers will be the third stage of this
The 17 old stops that were taken out of the organ by way of precaution now form the basis of the reconstruction. Among these stops are several reeds, of which J.S. Bach said that 'they could not be sufficiently praised'.
This magnificent project has had a long case history, including (of course) contests with other famous organ builders, broad discussions about reconstruction or an entirely design, and design contests between architects.
More information can be found on www.stiftung-johann-sebastian.de
- The year 2008 ended very sadly, after the blow of Cees van
Oostenbrugge's sudden death on 10 December. After consultations with
share holders (i.e. the personnel of the company) and trustees the new
management has been appointed (see below).
We thank all those who expressed their sympathy to the Van Oostenbrugge family and our company. It has been highly appreciated.
- The new organ for Fjell Church in Drammen, Norway, was inaugurated on March 15. The second newly built instrument in Norway in a short time, with a third one to be delivered at the end of 2010, in Sandefjord.
- Also delivered in the past few months are the restored cabinet organ (Onderhorst, 1762) in Bennekom and several other renewal projects in the Netherlands.
- In our workshops we have the organ for Chelsea at hand (see above), two restoration projects in Belgium and extensions of two historical Dutch organs.
Cees van Oostenbrugge was to retire from the company in the summer of 2009. In order to safeguard the continuity of the company and the quality of its work, much knowledge acquired through the past half century was already being passed on to Frits Elshout and Erik Winkel during a long period of time.
Cees fell away very suddenly, so that the management had to be taken over earlier than planned. Frits was appointed acting director immediately, and was appointed General Director by the shareholders on 5 January 2009. He successively appointed Erik Winkel as his deputy.
Frits had and keep responsibility over all voicing activities including pipe schales. Technical supervision is shared by both funcionaries.
The first months of 2009 have been very hectic for both Frits and Erik: a lot of extra work, and first and foremost the digesting of the tragic and sudden loss. During the past months contacts with many business relations have been renewed where necessary, so as to ensure a continuation of the work practically without complications or delays.
- During 2008 several projects have already been delivered: the renewed organ for the catholic church of John the Baptist in Ottersum (the windchests returned to their original destination: the Cavaillé-Coll organ in Haarlem), newly built instruments in Hoofddorp (hospital chapel) and Foldnes (in Norway, near Bergen), St. Joseph's church in Alkmaar (combination of several existing organs from that city), restoration of the Naber-organ in Stompetoren and the Flentrop organ(1922) in Koog a/d Zaan, first phase of repair works on the big organ in Zwolle's St. Michaels' church, delivery of a used Flentrop positiv in New Zealand and major maintenance of various organs.
- The Flentrop organ from the Vredekerk in Krommenie is for sale and has been put into storage. Details can be found elsewhere on this website in the 'Flentrop Organs' department. It is almost identical to the organ from Hamm (Germany) which still hasn't been sold definitively.
- In our pipe workshop we are working on the last pipes (reeds) for Hamburg. Other projects we are currently working on are the new organ for Drammen (near Oslo - Norway) and restoration of a cabinet organ (1762) for a church in Bennekom. Preparations are under way for a new organ in Christ Church Chelsea and a major revision of a Vereecken-organ in the Abby in Bornem (Belgium).
- In Sandefjord we will build a new organ (II/P/31). It is the third commission within a few years for an organ in Norway, but the first one in that country for an old church.
Both our workshops will be open for visitors on October 27 from 10 am until 3 pm.
The new organ for Foldnes (Norway) should by then be ready to be dismantled and shipped, and it will be demonstrated. Also the pre-voicing of the new organ for the hospital in Hoofddorp (south of Amsterdam) should be well under way.
Further more, all kinds of information can be obtained regarding the reconstruction of the organ in St. Catherine's, Hamburg.
And in case you are interested in chest-organs: our new model is available for testing.
Addresses: Westzijde 57, Zaandam (drawing room and pipe workshop) and Parallelweg 10, Koog aan de Zaan (both about 10 km's north-west of Amsterdam).
- Two projects, in The Hague (Lutheran Church) and Sint-Niklaas (Belgium) are nearing completion. Voicing will be ready in 1 or 2 months.
- Design and preparations for the new organ (II/P/11) for the hospital in Hoofddorp (south of Amsterdam) are practically finished. Work on the organ parts will commence later this month.
- In Drammen (near Oslo - Norway) we will build a new organ (II/P/16); the second organ for a customer in Norway within a short time.
- The Flentrop organ built in 1971 in Hamm (Germany) has been purchased back, since the church will be dismantled. It is for sale and can be viewed in our storage room. For details please see the information on Organs - Flentrop organs - Hamm on this website.
- For more than a year we have been working on the Flentrop concert
organ in 'De Doelen' in Rotterdam. This month the console has
been re-assembled after a completely new setter installation has been
built in. After that, the voicing will continue.
the end of August the new Flentrop organ (II/P/28) for the
Fjell Kommune in Foldnes should be technically assembled.
The pre-voicing will follow and be completed by the end of October.
The organ is going to stand in a recess specially intended for the organ when the new church in Foldnes was built.
March 1th 2007
On 1 March 2007 a completely renovated website was launched.
The new site was designed by Frank Pothoven, De Lachende Olifant. Not only is the design new, there are also changes in the content.
March 1th 2007
The painting activities in the church have progressed so far that we could start to assemble the organ.
In February the seven wedge-bellows and the winding of the blowing chamber were assembled.
The organ will be played again for the first time on Sunday, 2 September 2007, exactly 245 years after it was first played during the service in the then newly-built church.
The official inauguration is expected to be in October. The photo shows the signature on an old wind chest re-used by Bätz in 1762.
March 1th 2007
The assembly of the new Oberwerk, Chair Organ and Pedal in the Sint Niklaas Curch in Sint Niklaas (Belgium) is nearly finished.
This is the second phase in the building of a new organ inspired by the early North-German Baroque. In the first phase, a Belgian organ builder built the organ case and the great manual.
The organ is expected to be first used in the summer of 2007.