of the Jaeckel
fourteen-ton Opus 45 Pipe Organ that is now a focal point
in Emorys Emerson Concert Hall was only recently
installed, but the grand instrument is the fruit of a
relationship that goes back more than a decade.
1991, when plans for a University arts center were beginning
to take shape, administrators and members of the arts
faculty met with organ builder Daniel Jaeckel and asked
him to design an organ expressly for Emory. But those
early plans were abandoned and the agreement with Jaeckel
had to wait more than ten years, until the Schwartz Center
for Performing Arts was completed in 2003.
new direction took place after the mid-1990s, says
Timothy Albrecht, university organist. Now Emorys
new architectural design team and Daniel began working
together once again to effect a much more classical space
and concert hall pipe organ we now see.
of North Americas most elite builders of hand-crafted
organs, Jaeckel has studied and played instruments throughout
Europe, acquainting himself with the intricate constructions
of centuries ago. Working from a small shop in Minnesota,
he has designed some fifty organs of varying sizes for
churches, colleges, and concert halls. Jaeckel uses the
same techniques and materials (wood, glue, tin, lead)
as the masters of the 1700s, such as the famous Andreas
Silbermann of Germany.
organ case is made of cherry wood, in keeping with the
wood found in Emerson Concert Hall, and the colors and
visual design complement and reinforce shapes and colors
throughout the hall. The wood carvings feature Southern
are thrilled at how our Jaeckel organ already feels visually
at home and at peace in the room, Albrecht says.
It is a huge asset for us at Emory and it will undoubtedly
prove, beginning this fall, to be one of the major organ
venues in Atlanta and the Southeast. It reinforced my
earlier conviction that Daniel Jaeckel is a visual artist
as well as a master organ builder.
the structure of the organ is finished, Jaeckel will spend
the coming months voicing the pipestuning
each pipe, one at a time. The longest is twenty-seven
feet and the shortest is a quarter inch.
University will celebrate the Opus 45 with a festival
and recital by Albrecht in September, when the Year
of the Jaeckel will commence.
so exciting about this organ, says Rosemary Magee
82G, secretary of the University, is that
it is both a great work of art in itself and will be an
instrument for the creation of great works of art for
many years to come.P.P.P.