The Organ

Metropolitan United Church

The History of the Organ - 1897 to 2022

Abstract - The History of the Organ at Metropolitan United by Barbara M Hallam (1989)

In 1897, Casavant Frères Limitée installed the first organ in first Methodist Church in London, Ontario. The instrument was typical of the 19th century, and Casavant was regarded as a well-established builder in Canada. During the following 90 years, four major changes occurred, which affected the development of the instrument. 

For several years, the organ was adequate, but after World War I, a thicker, heavier sounding instrument was more fashionable. In 19 14–15, first, Methodist Church added a fourth manual to the organ. This allowed for larger scope and a stronger orchestral sound. It was not until the 1950s that another change was made. Wind pressures were decreased, so that mutations and mixtures would achieve a brighter sound. 10 years later, organist were still intent in achieving clearer and brighter sounds from their instruments due to the Baroque revival. The 1960s sparked an interest in Baroque performance practice and organist wanted to perform, works on instruments that were not muddy and muffled in tone. The latest revision to the organ in Metropolitan United Church was completed in 1980. Casavant Frères Limitée was hired to implement a complete total revision of the instrument. This was done to improve the total quality of the organ, specifically the chorus reeds.

Entire Thesis - The History of the Organ at Metropolitan United by Barbara M. Hallam

Chapter 1 - A brief history of Metropolitan United Church and the installation of the organ in 1897 

Chapter 2 - The organ in 1914 in additions made in 1915

Chapter 3 - The rebuilding of the instrument in 1952

Chapter 4 - Reconstruction of the church sanctuary in 1961 and subsequent changes made to the organ I did Knoch Organ Company

Chapter 5 - Tonal revision of the instrument by Casavant Frères Limitée In 1980

Conclusion and Appendices

Met Renovation 2022