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25 September 2015

We’re pleased to announce the commissioning of our Op. 95 by Christ Church Lutheran in Minneapolis, Minnesota. One of the last works of celebrated Finnish architect Eliel Saarinen, the church building was declared a National Historic Landmark in 2009. Because of the sensitivity of the interior, the new organ will be placed in the original organ chamber, behind a grille. The organ retains several sets of Kimball and Casavant pipes from the previous instrument. Robert Farlee and Martin Seltz are the Cantors; Gregory Peterson is serving as consultant.

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13 August 2015

We are shocked and saddened by the sudden death of our friend John Scott. The Organist and Director of Music of Saint Thomas Church in New York City, John touched untold numbers of admiring listeners around the world through his music-making with the Saint Thomas Choir of Men & Boys, as a solo performer, and in concert with various ensembles. But even more than his celebrated musical achievements, it was John’s humble and engaging manner that secured for him a warm place in the hearts of his many church music colleagues, friends, and acquaintances.

Construction of Op. 93, the Miller-Scott Organ, continues, but how different the experience will be without John’s quiet wisdom and counsel. Our hearts go out to his wife, Lily, his family, his Saint Thomas Church colleagues, and the boys of the Choir School.

A lovely appreciation by Michael Barone can be found on the Pipedreams website.

On 19 September, Benjamin Nicholas, Merton College Chapel Director of Music, presented a concert in memory of John Scott, under whom he served at St Paul’s Cathedral in London. John played the dedication recital on our Op. 91 at Merton in April 2014.

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22 May 2015

Following the death of its owner, Charlotte Smith, our Op. 39 was donated by her children to Queen of the Most Holy Rosary Church, also in Bridgehampton, N.Y. Dobson and Foley-Baker, Inc. collaborated to move the organ, which occurred in the middle of May.

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10 May 2015

On Mother’s Day 2015, our home town of Lake City, Iowa, was struck by an EF-1 tornado. Fortunately, there were no injuries, but significant damage was done to our local high school buildings and numerous homes. The photo above shows a portion of the high school roof resting in the adjacent street. The Dobson shop itself was entirely spared, and apart from shingles torn off the roof of Lynn Dobson’s house, and some paint knocked off by hail and much tree damage generally, the homes of all members of the Dobson crew were unscathed. We are grateful to law enforecement, utility crews, and volunteers that came from all over the state to assist with clean-up efforts and to restore power.

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April 2015

We’ve completed our work on the organ at St. Mary’s Church in Iowa City, Iowa, home to the largest remaining instrument built by the Moline Organ Co. The foundations of that firm were laid in the 1860s in Wisconsin by English émigrés. This three-manual, mechanical action instrument of 1883 has 31 stops, and was restored by Quimby Pipe Organs of Warrensburg, Missouri, in the 1980s. The original bellows was removed years before Quimby’s work, and was replaced with a reservoir of small size. The parish has engaged us to build a new, larger reservoir, and undertake a variety of restorative repairs.

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8 February 2015

The dedication of our Op. 92, for the Blair School of Music of Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, was celebrated in a recital presented to an overflowing audience by Dr. Carl Smith. Commissioned for Blair’s Steve and Judy Turner Recital Hall, Op. 92 has 27 ranks on two manuals and pedal and employs suspended mechanical key action and electric stop action. Installation and voicing took about three months. Mark Wait is Dean of the Blair School of Music; Dr. Smith is Senior Lecturer in Music Theory and Composition, Organ and Harpsichord.

The program:

Scheidemann: Fantasia in G
Six Pieces from the Earlier Repertoire
   Anonymous: Felix namque (c. 1400)
   Paumann: En avois (15th century)
   Anonymous: Pulcherrima de Virgine (Buxheimer Orgelbuch)
   Paumann?: “Wilhelmus Legrant”
   Redford: Primo dierum omnium (16th century)
   Anonymous: Redeuntes in Mi (Buxheimer Orgelbuch)
Vaughan Williams: Prelude on Rhosymedre
Carl Smith: A Saintly Quodlibet
Britten: Fanfare for St. Edmundsbury
Scheidemann: Prelude in D
Couperin: Mass for the Convents
   Agnus Dei: Cromorne sur la Taille
   Kyrie: Fugue sur la Trompette
   Elevation: Tierce en Taille
Buxtehude: Canzonetta in G Minor. BuxWV 173
Buxtehude: Chorale Prelude on Nun bitten wire den heilgen Geist
Buxtehude: Ciacona in E Minor. BuxWV 160
Bach: Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland. BWV 699
Bach: Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland. BWV 659
Bach: O Lamm Gottes, unschuldig. BWV 1095
Bach:O Lamm Gottes, unschuldig. BWV 656

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Dobson Pipe Organ Builders, Ltd.
200 North Illinois Street • Post Office Box 25
Lake City, Iowa 51449 USA
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