Mr. Michel Bouvard, renowned organist, performs stunning recital on the grand organ at the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart

Martin Pasi of Pasi Organ Builders, Inc., located in Roy Washington, was selected to build the grand organ at the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart designed by Ziegler Cooper Architects. The Co-Cathedral’s Opus XIX is the 19th organ hand crafted and installed by Pasi Organ Builders.

For four years, the five person team has been designing, manufacturing and installing the numerous pieces that create the beautiful acoustical sounds of the mechanical action organ. This pipe organ consists of 5,499 pipes ranging in size from half an inch to 32 feet with the heaviest weighing 750 lbs. Each of the components were measured and built in his shop to exact specifications using around 11 tons of tin, lead and other various metal work. With two trucks weighing 15 tons each, thousands of handmade wood and metal parts were delivered for the installation.

Most organs are built in the central axis of the nave.  However, at the Co-Cathedral, the challenge has been to build the organ into the outer façade of the building. Martin spoke with Ziegler Cooper Architects and the engineers to determine a solution.  In order to prevent obstructing any views of the 40 ft high and 20 ft wide Resurrection window that adorns the front wall of the Co-Cathedral, concrete was removed from the structure above the choir loft to create room for all of the pipes. The pipe organ is being constructed aside the grand resurrection window within two dual cases that will stand 45 feet at their tallest.

The organ contains 75 stops, four keyboards, a foot pedal and 104 different sets of pipes. Each stop controls a rank of pipes that are grouped according to their pitch and tone quality. After all the pipes were installed over a period of 4 months, the team spent the remaining 5 months tuning each of the 5,499 pipes by hand, custom-designing the acoustics specifically for the space.  The new organ, 25,000 linear feet of lumber and 11 tons of metal, was completed on October 9th 2010.