Contact the Web Master: Email  

The Von Beckerath Water Organ

The Planning

The Implementation

The Results

The goal of the Organ Task Force and the Chancel Redesign Committee was to integrate the new tracker organ and its footprint seamlessly into our sanctuary and blend it with our existing design. Bonnie put her heart and soul into the project and was not just the donor, but an active member of the Organ Task Force. She fostered the idea that the design of the new organ should incorporate some of the aspects of the last chancel renovation. For example, that the bases of the left and right towers of the new organ reflect the design of the 1932 baptismal font. She also suggested that we bring in the lattice design from the original organ chambers, the room colors and the cross, thus helping the congregation to have a sense of familiarity in the newly renovated sanctuary.
In July of 2008 four master organ builders from the von Beckerath Company arrived in Mt. Kisco. The following day which was blistering hot, we watched with awe as the 620 crates were unloaded in our church parking lot from the containers which had been shipped from Germany to Port Newark. The personnel from von Beckerath changed several times over the next three months so that the necessary talent would be here to assemble the many pieces into a magnificent organ as well as to voice and tune it. It was completed on October 10, 2008.
Our new von Beckerath organ incorporates the German traditions of Baroque and French Romantic organ building and was designed by Anthony Newman. The tonal concept arose from the need to provide both a leading voice for congregational praise and a concert instrument. The distribution of the 41 stops, 53 ranks, and 2,640 pipes, Grand Orgue, Recit, Positif, and Pedal divisions was planned to give each stop its own individual and beautiful sound. Each division has its own distinctive character. It has mechanical key action that provides an intimacy not possible in other actions. By promoting a natural style of voicing, the associated use of slider wind chests has a direct and beneficial influence on the organ's speech and tone. The placement of the organ within a case with speaking front pipes helps to blend and project the sound. Von Beckerath has blended the old and the new, employing modern technology only where it made sense to do so.

The "Water Organ" was named by the donor, Bonnie Trotta as water is a symbol of new life and to reflect the dramatic force, graceful peace and emotional healing of spiritual music. The inaugural concert was given October 11, 2008 in the sanctuary of the Presbyterian Church of Mt. Kisco by the world renowned organist, Anthony Newman.

For more information goto:

Background History

Three years ago, our old organ once again failed, this time during the Palm Sunday service. Bonnie Trotta, a member of our congregation, approached our Pastor, Molly Blyth Teichert, Mary Jane Newman, our Minister of Music, and Ron Lundberg, Chairman of the Music and Worship Committee, and said that she wished to do something about the problem. The Worship and Music Committee then began an intensive search of organ companies, types and related costs during the summer of 2006. In the spring of 2007, the organ completely failed and Bonnie invited Mary Jane and Ron Lundberg to her home to discuss the purchase of a new organ. The Session of the Church then created the Organ Task Force to pursue the search. The task force interviewed ten organ companies extensively and went to hear several instruments. As a result of the search, they recommended the von Beckerath Organ Company to Bonnie and her husband Tom because of its international reputation for building world class organs.