The Walker pipe organ at St. Mark’s was built by J.W. Walker & Sons, Ltd. of Brandon, England. For organ music aficionados, details of our organ are visible below, and here are still more details about the Walker Organ:
The instrument consists of four manual divisions, C – c, 61 notes, and a pedal division, C – g, 32 notes, controlled from a detached drawknob console. There will be 55 speaking stops (70 ranks), 2 accessories, 2 derivations, 10 couplers and 3 tremulants, making a total of 72 registers. The key, pedal, and expression pedal actions are mechanical; the coupling, derivation, drawstops, and combination actions are electric. Click here for the complete specifications.
The accessories consist of ten divisional pistons for the Swell and eight divisional pistons for the Solo, Great, Positive, and Pedal. There are eight general thumb pistons to the whole organ and eight general toe pedals. Reversible thumb pistons to unison couplers and reversible toe pedals to ‘Swell to Pedal’ and ‘Great to Pedal” are provided. Advance and retreat thumb pistons and toe pedals for the Sequencer and LED display, and control pistons to program the Sequencer and select and lock memory levels are included.
The detached console has terraced stop jambs and is located in the Chancel facing the choir to allow the organist to conduct the choir.
Organ Dedication Recitals
The Organ Dedication Committee of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church organized a three-week series of worship services and organ concerts to celebrate the completion of the new four-manual Walker organ. The dedication of the organ occurred during the morning service on April 17, 2004. That evening at eight o’clock, David Hurd played the inaugural dedicatory recital.
On the following Sunday, April 24, also at eight o’clcock, Karl Hochreiter conducted a concert of Baroque music for voice, organ, and orchestra. The solo organists were Michael Bloss, Larry Visser, and Elizabeth Claar, playing concerti and sinfonias by Bach and Handel. Linn Maxwell Keller sang a Bach solo cantata.
On the following weekend, Gerre and Judith Hancock arrived in Grand Rapids to bring the dedication series to a festive climax on Sunday, May 1. Gerre Hancock played the morning service at St. Mark’s, and directed the St. Mark’s Community Evensong Choir at Evensong, held at four o’clock that afternoon. Judith Hancock was the organist for the service, with Mr. Hancock improvising the postlude. The closing dedicatory event was a recital by Judith Hancock at eight o’clock that evening.
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