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    The church organ of Beatenberg

    - Organs from 1812 until today
    - Technical details
    - » Organ sound examples

    Organ this day / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    The church organ today
    13 stops / manufactured by Metzler Dietikon 1950

    The church organs of Beatenberg (1820 - 2009)

    before 1812
    Chamber organ

    The organ from the church in Eriswil was put in

    Organ builder Zimmermann built a new organ with 9 stops (picture below).
    The organ stood at the front of the church.
    The old instrument was sold to Paris.

    1903 - Organ with 9 Stops
    1903 - Organ with 9 Stops

    Goll builds a new pneumatic organ with 8 stops.
    This organ came on the left side wall
    (unfortunately we haven’t found any pictures).
    The old organ went to the church in Lyss and later to Döttingen AG.

    Metzler Dietikon builds the new organ (the present one) with 13 stops.
    It was financed by interest free credits by parishioners.


    About the present organ

    Organ pipes / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Principal / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    The pipes on the right

    The pipe organ 1950 / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    The pipe organ is a keyboard musical instrument that produces sound by venting mechanically compressed air (wind) through resonant pipes. Each pipe produces sound of one fixed pitch, so they are provided in sets with one pipe or more per note, each set or stop having a common timbre and loudness throughout. Most organs have multiple sets of pipes of differing timbre, pitch and loudness which the player can employ singly or in combination. A pipe organ may have one or several keyboards, played by the hands, and a pedalboard for bass notes, played by the feet, each of which controls its own group of stops. Source: Wikipedia

    The wind system
    Contains the parts which producestore and deliver wind to the pipes.

    The wind system

    Air tubes

    Tubes delivering air to pipes

    Principal / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Keyboards played by the hands are known as manuals

    Keyboards played by the hands are known as manuals (from the Latin manus, meaning "hand"). The keyboard played by the feet is a pedalboard. Every organ has at least one manual (most have two or more), and most have a pedalboard. Each keyboard is named for a particular division of the organ (a group of ranks) and generally controls only the stops from that division. The range of the keyboards has varied widely across time and between countries. Most current specifications call for two or more manuals with sixty-one notes (five octaves, from C to c) and a pedalboard with thirty or thirty-two notes (two and a half octaves). Source: Wikipedia

    Manuals / Pedalboard / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Manuals with 4 ½ octaves each
    Pedalboard with 2 ½ octaves

    Therese Jordi, organist / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Therese Jordi explains the stops.
    Each of the 13 stops has its own character.
    The organist has wonderful possibilities to play very varied.

    Stops - Manual I / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    The stops of Manual I (lower manual)
    Mixtur 2' (triple) / Nachthorn 4' / Oktav 4' / Rohrflöte 8' / Principal 8'

    Stops - Manual II / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    The stops of Manual II
    Gedackt 8' / Principal 4' / Rohrflöte 4' / Quinte 2 2/3' / Flageolet 2' / Scharf 1'   (Scharf 1' in triple mixture)

    A mixture is an organ stop of principal tone quality that contains multiple ranks of pipes. It is designed to be drawn with a combination of stops that forms a complete chorus (for example, principals of 8′, 4′, and 2′ pitches). The mixture sounds the upper harmonics of each note of the keyboard. The individual pitches in the mixture are not perceived by the listener; rather, they reinforce the fundamental pitches of the chorus, adding volume and brilliance to the sound. Source: Wikipedia

    Stops - pedalboard / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Stops - Pedalboard
    Pedalboard and Pedalboard stop (flutes only)
    Settings of the pedalboard: Kopplungsmöglichkeiten / Mixtur / Scharf

    Stops pedalboard / Photo: Heinz Rieder

       Stops pedalboard:
       Subbass 16' und Bourdon 8'

    Organ pipes / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    A small part of the 900 pipes

    Gedackt (also spelled gedeckt) is the name of a family of stops in pipe organ building. They are one of the most common types of organ flue pipe. The name is a German word, meaning "capped" or "covered".

    Gedackt pipes can be made of either wood or metal, but in modern organ building, and the majority of historical examples, they are made of wood. They are occasionally square, but much more commonly rectangular in cross-section, the mouth being on the narrow side of the pipe. The mouth has a high cut-up (height to width ratio) to produce the fluty tone. Gedackt is a stopped pipe, as its name implies.

    The gedackt produces a moderately soft, bland, flute-like tone, invaluable for basic ensemble sound in the pipe organ. The stoppered design eliminates many high overtones, leaving the classic sound of the gedackt, which blends seamlessly with almost all other stops. It is similar in sound to the bourdon, but is usually softer and somewhat sweeter in tone. The bourdon´s heavier construction and square-walled pipes gives it a more pronounced and weighty tone. Source: Wikipedia

    Principal, Flöte / Photo: Heinz Rieder  Holzprincipal offen, gedackt / Photo: Heinz Rieder  Rohrflöte / Photo: Heinz Rieder  Quinte / Photo: Heinz Rieder
    Sizes by comparison: Organ pipes - person

    Principal, flutewood, chimney flute, quintize, open and gedackt

    Organ pipes - person (in foot)

    Sound - examples / Therese Jordi, organist / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Sound examples by Therese Jordi

    Sound-examples   » 1    » 2    » 3


    Download the sound examples as .ogg files
    and open and play with your own sound program

    Computer sound-files / Download

    » Sound-examples, file 1  organ: Therese Jordi  sound: Heinz Rieder.ogg
    » Sound-examples, file 2  organ: Therese Jordi  sound: Heinz Rieder.ogg
    » Sound-examples, file 3  organ: Therese Jordi  sound: Heinz Rieder.ogg

    I would like to thank Therese Jordi for their support with building this page.

    Sound examples by Therese Jordi, Beatenberg
    Sound recording and photos by Heinz Rieder / April 2008
    copyright  www.beatenbergbilder.ch

    The organists on our church organ

    Konrad Zimmermann, Ringgenberg / Erika Cotti, Goldswil
    Elisabeth Kiener, Bern / Hans Häsler, Unterseen

    Memories of our late organist Hermann Schwander:

    Hermann Schwander, organist / Photo: Greti Schwander

       » Start organ sound
    A small sound example of Hermann Schwander
    playing the organ and further information (in German only) about him

    Church / Organ / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    Church Beatenberg / Photo: Heinz Rieder Church Beatenberg / Photo: Heinz Rieder

    The church in 2007


    Sound recording and photos by Heinz Rieder
    I would like to thank Bethli Wyssen, Therese Jordi,
    Greti Schwander and Kurt Schmocker for their support with building this page.

    Concept:  Fritz Bieri and Heinz Rieder   copyright © http://www.beatenbergbilder.ch
    Language translation: Barbara Stephenson-Berger / Organization: Michael Künzi, Tourist-Center Beatenberg
    Website and image editing: Heinz Rieder

    The photos speak for themselves