The Pipe Organ in China Project Website: Updates for December 2023

26 December 2023

A Happy Boxing Day to all of our visitors and friends.

A new two-manual chapel organ in Hong Kong, built by Diego Cera Organ Builders, has been installed in the historic Bishop’s House, and added to the Census: HKG2023.

The Project was informed on Christmas Day that PEK1920, the Kimball theater organ in the Auditorium of PUMC, has now been completely restored and reinstalled (with a new console) by Casavant and J.L. Weiler. It was re-dedicated in a concert held on 7 April 2023. Billed as a ‘Centennial Concert’, it in fact took place almost 102 years after the September 1921 dedication of the Auditorium and organ. Along with performances of various patriotic choral pieces by Chinese composers, organist Shen Yuan played the Toccata and Fugue in D minor (Bach), the Allegro, Chorale, and Fugue in D Major (Mendelssohn), Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 (Elgar), the Wagner and Mendelssohn wedding marches, and accompanied the ‘Ode to Joy’ (Beethoven). We have requested the specs of the rebuilt organ as well as new photos, and will update the page for this installation when we receive them.

Prof. Urrows posted a blog entry in December on the 1969 Catholic Hymnal, published in Hong Kong. This hymnal includes a number of original liturgical works by Hong Kong composers of the time, including Father Antonio Riganti (1893-1965), who was discussed in a What’s New post in 2019. An interesting essay on his musical background by Father Riganti may be found here:

We wish all of our friends and visitors a Happy and Blessed Christmastide. Please enjoy singing the Chinese version of Venez, divin Messie, from the score below! This comes the 1926 SVD hymnal, Cantiques en Chinois, and this version is still sung in Roman Catholic churches in Mainland China to this day.

Organs in the Census: 206