Lost Pipe Organs of Australia: A Pictorial Record

This book has been published to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of the foundation of the Organ Historical Trust of Australia in 1977. It provides a pictorial record of pipe organs in Australia that have been lost through various agencies. Some have simply been removed and broken up, others have been destroyed by fire, and others have been rebuilt beyond visual or tonal recognition.

Australia’s heritage of pipe organs stretches from the early nineteenth century to the present day, reflecting the cultural context in which the organ has existed. The cover illustration shows Tom Roberts’ well known painting of the opening of the first Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901. In the background can be discerned the pipe organ built by George Fincham for the 1880 Melbourne International Exhibition, effectively ‘presiding’ over the event like a spectre.

Hardcover | 6x9in | 132 pages | ISBN 9781543403329
Softcover | 6x9in | 132 pages | ISBN 9781543403312
E-Book | 132 pages | ISBN 9781543403305
Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

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A Supplement to Historic Organs of New South Wales

A Supplement to Historic Organs of New South Wales – the instruments, their makers and players, 1791-1940 is now available, published and distributed by the Organ Historical Trust of Australia.

If you liked Graeme Rushworth’s 1988 work Historic Organs of New South Wales, you must have the Supplement!

If you do not have Rushworth’s 1988 work, do not despair! The Supplement is a stand-alone work packed with fascinating reading, and is the same ‘Mixture IV’ about people, organ and church history, and music.

The Supplement has been designed as a companion volume to present new information found since the 1988 book was published.

Contents include:

  • More about the early organs in NSW to 1855 including the 1840 Bevington for St Mary’s Cathedral, and also a full account of Francis Ellard and his musical family and the organ they brought to Sydney in 1838.
  • NSW, interstate and overseas builders and their work in NSW – additional notes on Johnson, Kinloch, Jackson, Davidson, Layton Bros, Broderick, Smith, Aeolian Company, Balbiani, Norman & Beard Ltd, Pilcher, Positive Organ Co, etc.
  • Descriptions of the Bates & Son organ at St John’s, Camden, with the operating instructions for its “dumb organist” barrel attachment; the great auction of Flight & Robson’s stock in 1832; the fires at premises of Bevington, Hill, and Walker.
  • More biographies of important NSW organists including Alex Rea, Alice Bryant, the Gehde and Mote families, Frederick Morley, Charles Tuckwell and others.
  • Biographies of renowned overseas organists Renée Nizan and W.H. Jude and their concerts in Australia, and details of Marcel Dupré’s Sydney visit and concerts.
  • A “Miscellaneous” section includes descriptions of the University of Sydney Musical Festival of 1859; several large orchestrions in Sydney; the two Bishop families of organbuilders in NSW; organ histories of NSW churches that were previously unknown; Thomas C. Christmas and his work in Queensland, etc.
  • An appendix of information on 120 British organbuilders and their families, compiled from the 1881 British census.
  • A complete index

132 pages, 210 x 268 mm, 50 illustrations, soft cover
ISBN 0-9588448-1-X


Queries – please email John Maidment or
Chris Cook

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Soaring Sounds

The choice of music in the first commercial recording of the 1877 Hill & Son concert organ at Tanunda has been influenced by works performed on the organ when it was placed in Adelaide Town Hall and played upon by distinguished local and overseas performers up to the visit of Marcel Dupré in July 1939. The organ was opened in October 1877 by Melbourne City Organist David Lee, a series was given in 1892 and 1896 by August Wiegand, Sydney City Organist, while in September 1903, Edward Lemare was a distinguished visitor, and played an amazing selection of repertoire. The instrument was well displayed during Marcel Dupré’s 1939 visit in a wide-ranging selection of works.

The performer David Tagg is one of Australia’s most gifted younger organists. His initial studies were at Knox Grammar School in Sydney with Peter Kneeshaw, and he has subsequently been organ scholar at St Stephen’s Uniting Church, Macquarie Street, Sydney and Christ Church St Laurence Anglican Church, Sydney. He has given recitals in the two Cathedrals in Sydney and Sydney Town Hall and accompanied the choir of Christ Church St Laurence in its overseas tour 2014-15, performing in London, St Albans, Brussels and Paris. He specializes in performing romantic music from England and France from the mid-19th century to the start of the second world war. He completed his postgraduate studies in architecture at the University of Technology Sydney in 2015 and now works within the architecture field.

The recording has been made by Thomas Grubb, of Mano Musica, Melbourne. The striking CD jacket includes an eight-page booklet.

The programme is as follows:

Georg Frederic Handel (1685-1759), arr. by Marcel Dupré
Organ Concerto no. 4, op. 2 HWV290
i) a Tempo ordinario, e staccato
ii) Allegro
iii) Adagio, e staccato
iv) Allegro, ma non presto

Alfred Hollins (1865-1942)
Maytime Gavotte

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Toccata and Fugue in F, BWV 540

Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921)
Prelude and Fugue in G, op. 109, no. 2

Charles Villiers Stanford (1852-1924)
Benedictus, from Organ Sonata no.3, op.152 ‘Britannica’

Reginald Goss-Custard (1877-1956)
Chelsea Fayre

Louis Vierne (1870-1937)
Claire de Lune, Suite II, op.53

Edward Elgar (1857-1934)
Pomp and Circumstance March no. 4

Dale Wood (1934-2003)
Ar Hyd y Nos, from Seven Folk Tune Sketches

Marcel Dupré (1886-1971)
Prelude and Fugue in B

The CD may be obtained from the Friends of the Hill & Son Grand organ.

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Splendours on the Hill – Volume One

This exciting new disc gives fresh voice to one of Sydney’s best preserved historic organs, with a very wide variety of pieces that showcase the instrument’s dual personalities as both a Liturgical and concert organ.

Kurt Ison is the Convener of the Christ Church St Laurence Sydney’s successful monthly organ recital series that was launched in 2009. He is also one of Australia’s leading organists, having played solo concerts in prestigious venues such as St Paul’s Cathedral London, Notre Dame Cathedral Paris, Washington National Cathedral and Westminster Abbey.

  1. Sonata no 3 in A Major (from Six Sonatas for organ, opus 65, no. 3) – Felix Mendelssohn
  2. Prière (Moderato Cantabile. Risoluto) (from the École d’orgue 1862) – Jacques-Nicolas Lemmens
  3. Prélude sur l’introït de l’Epiphanie, opus 13, (1961) – Maurice Duruflé
  4. “Earth’s crammed with Heaven” for organ solo – Stacey Xiaoyu Yang
  5. Pastorale – Alfred Hollins
  6. Prelude and Fugue in G Major BWV541 – JS Bach
  7. Voluntary on ‘Tallis Canon’ (opus 118) – Brett McKern
  8. Prelude, Fugue and Variation (from Six Pieces, opus 18, no. 3) – César Franck
  9. Voluntary VIII in D Major (from Vesper Voluntaries opus 14) – Sir Edward Elgar
  10. Fantasia and Toccata in D Minor, opus 57 – CV Stanford

This CD production was assisted by the OHTA through a grant from the “Christopher Dearnley Award”.

The CD may be obtained digitally as well as the traditional format (order using supplied form).

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Vintage Sounds Alive

OHTA has produced a recording of five historic organs located in New South Wales.  The aim is to showcase instruments which have been restored in recent years by Mark Fisher of Pipe Organ Reconstructions or Peter D G Jewkes.  Two of them, Bonnyrigg and Parramatta, are very successful ‘transplants’.

The players are Daniel Canaris, Pastor de Lasala, Peter Guy, Kurt Ison, and Peter Jewkes.  They have selected music which demonstrates the tonal resources of each instrument, ranging from 18th c pieces for manuals only to Handel, S S Wesley, Mendelssohn, Hollins, Thalben-Ball, Whitlock, and William Mathias.  The sound has been vividly captured by Greg Ghavalas, and comprehensive notes by Dr Kelvin Hastie OAM on the instruments have been included in the accompanying booklet.


  • St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Newcastle (Hill and Son 1892)
  • Seventh-day Adventist Church, Stanmore (Unknown mid-19th century builder)
  • St John the Baptist Catholic Church, Bonnyrigg Heights (Bevington 1879)
  • St Paul’s Anglican Church, Burwood (Davidson 1891)
  • St Patrick’s Cathedral, Parramatta (Norman and Beard 1898)
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Historic Organs of the Barossa Valley, Vol 1

Performances by Christopher Dearnley and John Stiller on six of the historic church organs of the Barossa Valley. Includes a 16-page booklet giving a history of the organs in the Barossa area, their builders and the music.


  • St Thomas’ Lutheran Church, Stockwell (J.C.A. Krüger c.1850)
  • Christ Church Anglican Church, Kapunda (J.J. Broad 1880 / Fincham & Hobday 1887)
  • Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Guenberg (D.H. Lemke 1871)
  • Uniting Church, Angaston (J.E. Dodd 1908)
  • St Petri Lutheran Church, Nuriootpa (Laurie 1968 / George Stephens 1990)
  • Herberge Christi Lutheran Church, Bethany (J.E. Dodd 1929)
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Historic Organs of the Barossa Valley, Vol 2

Performances by Christopher Dearnley and John Stiller on seven more of the historic church organs of the Barossa Valley.


  • St John’s Lutheran Church, Tanunda (J.E. Dodd 1922)
  • St Michael’s Lutheran Church, Gnadenfrei/Marananga (W.G. Rendall 1880)
  • Strait Gate Lutheran Church, Light Pass (J.E. Dodd 1925)
  • St Petri Lutheran Church, Eden Valley (Aug. Laukhuff, c.1910)
  • Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Nuriootpa (Walter Bros 1877)
  • St Paul’s Lutheran Church, Tanunda (J.E. Dodd 1928)
  • St John’s Lutheran Church, Ebeneezer (D.H. Lemke 1875)
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Historic Pipe Organs of Melbourne, Vol 1

Performances by Rhys Arvidson, Michael Heighway, Rebecca McLennan, Andrew Mariotti, Christopher Trikilis. Introduced by John Sheridan and featuring extensive interviews with John Maidment, this DVD contains an hour of music played on the following historic pipe organs.


  • James Moyle Pipe Organ (ca. 1855) at St Linus’; Anglican Church, Merlynston
  • F.W. Nicholson Pipe Organ (1862) at St Patrick’s Catholic Church, Mentone
  • J.W. Walker Pipe Organ (1865) at St Stephen’s Anglican Church, Richmond
  • William Stone Pipe Organ (1879) at The Avenue Uniting Church, Blackburn
  • Alfred Fuller Pipe Organ (1888) at St Mark’s Catholic Church, Fawkner
  • T.C. Lewis Pipe Organ (1891) at St Paul’s Anglican Cathedral, Melbourne

Running Time 1 hour 36 minutes. This DVD is in PAL format and requires a multistandard DVD* player & TV to play in the USA. Alternatively, it will play in any late model PC fitted with a DVD drive.

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Historic Pipe Organs of Melbourne, Vol 2

Performances by Rhys Arvidson, Christopher Cook, Andrew Mariotti, Dom Alban (Philip) Nunn OSB, Ben Sheen and Christopher Trikilis. Introduced by John Sheridan and featuring extensive interviews with John Maidment, this DVD contains an hour of music played on the following historic pipe organs.


  • Wesley Uniting Church, Box Hill (Henry Willis 1877)
  • St Aloysius’ Catholic Church, Caulfield (J.W. Wolff 1880)
  • Sacré-Coeur Convent Chapel, Glen Iris (Merklin & Cie 1889)
  • Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Williamstown (William Anderson 1896)
  • St Mary’s Star-of- the-Sea Catholic Church, West Melbourne (George Fincham 1900)
  • Scotch College Memorial Hall, Hawthorn (Wm. Hill & Son and Norman & Beard 1930)

Running Time 1 hour 37 minutes. This DVD is in PAL format and requires a multistandard DVD* player & TV to play in the USA. Alternatively, it will play in any late model PC fitted with a DVD drive.

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Past conference books

2017 OHTA Conference Book

Copies of the 87 page 2017 conference book are available from PO Box 200 Camberwell Victoria 3124 at a cost of $20.00 inclusive of postage and packing in Australia – overseas rates upon application.  Payment by credit card or by cheque made payable to Organ Historical Trust of Australia.  The book is illustrated in colour, with historical and technical information on all of the organs visited.

Please email John Maidment for more details.