First Church of Christ Scientist
St Kilda Road, South Melbourne

B 1927 Henry Willis & Sons, London.
3 manuals, 33 speaking stops, 20 couplers, electro-pneumatic






This is the leading church of the Christian Scientists in Victoria, based on the amphitheatre form used by the sect in America, and developed in a distinctive version of the "Neo-Grec" style of contemporary Britain. The church was built in 1920 to the design of Harold Dumsday of Bates Peebles & Smart. Standard Greek Revival elements like criss-cross grillework are belied by the central dome and the giant Diocletian window, which suggest a Byzantine character. The surviving hydraulic lift is of considerable technical interest. [1]

The organ was built in 1927 by the noted London firm of Henry Willis & Sons and remains largely unaltered from the original. With three manuals & 33 stops it is sited behind two bronze grilles in masonry chambers. The instrument is of romantic-symphonic design and incorporated outstanding examples of flue and reed voicing and is the only entirely new example of the firm's 20th century work in Australia. As an instrument, it is of great tonal distinction, retaining the whole of its pipework, action, windchests and elegant detached console with ivory fittings.

The specification, as noted by Simon Colvin (May 2007) is:

Great
Lieblich Bordun
Open Diapason No 1
Open Diapason No 2
Clarabella
Principal
Flûte Ouverte
Nazard
Fifteenth

Swell
Geigen Diapason
Rohr Flute
Salicional
Vox Angelica
Octave Geigen
Flûte Triangulaire
Mixture
Waldhorn
Cornopean
Oboe
Tremolo

Solo
Violoncello
Violon Celeste
Orchestral Flute
Echo Dulciana
Flûte Harmonique
Clarinet
Vox Humana
Tremolo
Tromba

Pedal
Resultant Bass
Open Bass
Sub Bass
Octave
Flute
Octave Flute
Trombone

16
8
8
8
4
4
2-2/3
2


8
8
8
8
4
4
3 rks
16
8
8



8
8
8
8
4
8
8

8


32
16
16
8
8
4
16



Couplers (reading left to right)
Solo to Pedal *
Great to Pedal * •
Swell to Pedal *
Solo to Pedal 4
Swell to Pedal 4

Swell to Great Sub Octave 16
Swell to Great *
Swell to Great Octave 4
Solo to Great Sub Octave 16
Solo to Great *
Solo to Great Octave 4

Swell Sub Octave 16
Swell Octave 4
Swell Unison Off

Solo Sub Octave 16
Solo Octave 4
Solo Unison Off
Swell to Solo Sub Octave 16
Swell to Solo *
Swell to Solo Octave 4

Great & Pedal Combs Coupled

5 Thumbs Pistons each to Gt, Sw & Solo
5 Toe Pistons
* duplicated by Thumb Pistons
• duplicated by Toe Piston
Setter Piston


The Great, Swell & Pedal (including Tromba/Trombone unit) are located behind the grill at the rear of the Rostrum/Platform.
The Solo is located beneath the Rostrum/Platform and speaks through the grill at the front.



Tromba

Solo

Pedal

Photos Simon Colvin (May 2007)


[1] Victorian churches : their origins, their story & their architecture, edited by Miles Lewis. East Melbourne: National Trust of Australia (Victoria), 1991, p87