Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church - New York City (photo: Steven E. Lawson)
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Church of the Holy Trinity
(Roman Catholic)


213 West 82nd Street
New York, N.Y. 10024
http://www.htcny.org


Organ Specifications:
III/38 Orgues Létourneau, Op. 53 (1997)
• II/ Geo. Kilgen & Son, Op. 5961 (1938) – Lower Church
II/18 Estey Organ Co., Op. 2654 (1927)




The origins of Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church date back to October 23, 1898, when a new parish was established on the West Side between 77th street and 86th from Central Park to the Hudson River. The area known today as the Upper West Side was fairly well-developed by 1900, and it would take several years to purchase property for a church building, rectory and school. Father Michael J. Considine supervised the construction of the church complex, which began in 1900, and on Sunday, July 3, 1910, the cornerstone was laid for the upper church. Father Considine was determined to construct a church whose "beauty would be an inspiration to man and a tribute to God." The pastor, with architect Joseph H. McGuire, envisioned a unique church of Byzantine design, rather than the then-prevalent Gothic or Romanesque styles.

  Holy Trinity Catholic Church - New York City
Holy Trinity Catholic Church - New York City  
   
When the church was dedicated on May 11, 1912, parishioners entered a glorious building which somewhat resembles Hagia Sophia, the mother church of Eastern Christians in Istanbul. Built of brick and terra cotta, the church is further adorned with mosaics and patterned tiles, and with marble and gold leaf. Soaring 100 feet above the floor, the 66-foot-diameter dome is faced with honey-colored Guastavino tiles and features a lantern for natural illumination from the apex. Galleries are present on three sides of the interior, with the choir and organ occupying the largest gallery in the liturgical West End. Two corner towers, which originally had small copper domes (removed in 1995), frame the Byzantine facade. Eight bronze doors are surmounted by statues of St. Peter and St. John, symbolizing the meeting of West (Rome) and East (Ephesus), and above the entrance is the Trinitarian Latin phrase "Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto" (Glory be to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit), executed in twenty-two karat gold mosaic.
           
  Letourneau Organ, Op. 53 (1998) at Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church - New York City (photo: Rodney A. Giles)
Orgues Létourneau Ltée
St. Hyacinthe, Québec, Canada – Opus 53 (1997)
Mechanical key action
Electric stop action
3 manuals, 34 stops, 38 ranks








The Church of the Holy Trinity, serving Roman Catholics on the Upper West Side since 1898, commemorated its hundredth anniversary with the installation of the new Létourneau pipe organ and the founding of the music series. Manufactured in St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada, this organ is Létourneau's Opus 53 and their only New York installation. Containing nearly 2100 pipes and featuring a Royal Trumpet en chamade, it serves as a visual and aural crown to the liturgical life of Holy Trinity Parish and is a jewel in Holy Trinity's unmatched architectural environment.

The Létourneau organ at Holy Trinity Church was tonally designed to excel in both French Symphonic and German Baroque organ literature. The nomenclature of the various stops is French and many of the stops are modeled after those of the great nineteenth century French organ builders such as Cavaillé-Coll. The reeds, in particular, are in the fiery French mold and the generously scaled flutes, particularly the Flûte harmoníque, have a French accent. The clean, singing principals join to form an organum plenum that is ideal for polyphonic music, particularly that of the seventeenth century.
               
Grand Orgue (Manual I) – 58 notes
16
  Bourdon 
58
2 2/3
  Nazard
58
8
  Montre
58
2
  Doublette
58
8
  Flûte harmonique
58
1 3/5
  Tierce
58
8
  Flûte à cheminée
58
    Fourniture IV rangs
232
4
  Prestant
58
8
  Trompette
58
4
  Flûte conique
58
 
  Tremblant  
               
Récit (Manual II) – 58 notes, enclosed
8
  Principal etroit
58
1 1/3
  Larigot
58
8
  Cor de nuit
58
 
  Plein jeu IV rangs
232
8
  Viole de gambe
58
16
  Basson
58
8
  Voix céleste [TC]
46
8
  Hautbois
58
4
  Principal
58
4
  Clairon
58
4
  Flûte à fuseau
58
    Tremblant  
2
  Flûte à bec
58
       

     

     
Bombarde (Manual III) – 58 notes
8
  Trompette Royal [chamade]
58
       
    Clochettes          
               
Pédale – 32 notes
32
  Bourdon [ext., 1-12 digital]
4
  Basse de choral
32
16
  Contrebasse
32
32
  Bombardon [ext.]
12
16
  Soubasse
32
16
  Bombarde
32
8
  Principal
32
16
  Basson
32
8
  Bourdon
32
  Trompette
32
               
Couplers (knobs above top manual)
    G.O. to Pédale   Récit to G.O.
    Récit to Pédale   Bombarde to G.O.
    Bombarde to Pédale   Bombarde to Récit
               
Adjustable Combinations
   
Récit Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Grand Orgue Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Pédale Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb & toe)
General Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 (thumb & toe)
  General Cancel (thumb)
  Set (thumb)
               
Piston Sequencer
    NEXT: (2) thumb; (2) toe
    PREV: (1) thumb; (1) toe
               
Accessories
    G.O. to Pédale Reversible (thumb & toe)   Tutti Reversible (thumb & toe)
    Récit to Pédale Reversible (thumb & toe)   Clochettes (thumb, toe, knob)
    Récit to G.O. Reversible (thumb)   Récit Expression Pedal
               
Letourneau Organ, Op. 53 (1998) at Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church - New York City (photo: Rodney A. Giles)   Letourneau Organ, Op. 53 (1998) at Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church - New York City (photo: Rodney A. Giles)
           
Organ in Lower Church:

Geo. Kilgen & Son
St. Louis, Mo. – Opus 5961 (1938)
Electro-pneumatic action
2 manuals


This organ was installed in the Lower Church. Specifications for this organ have not yet been located.
           
  Estey Organ Co. organ, Op. 2654 (1927) in Catholic Church of the Holy Trinity - New York City (photo: Byron Company, 1931)
Estey Organ Company
Brattleboro, Vt. – Opus 2654 (1927)
Electro-pneumatic action
2 manuals, 27 stops, 18 ranks






The original organ in the upper church was built in 1927 by the Estey Organ Company of Brattleboro, Vermont. Estey installed the organ in the rear gallery behind twin cases that flanked the rose window. Following are the Factory Specifications:
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Open Diapason [ext. 2nd O.D.]
12
8
  Gross Flute (wood)
73
8
  Major Open Diapason *
73
4
  Flute Harmonic
73
8
  Second Open Diapason
85
4
  Octave [fr. 2nd Op. Diap.]
8
  Dulciana
73
2
  Fifteenth [fr. 2nd Op. Diap.]
8
  Melodia (wood)
73
8
  Harmonic Tuba
73
           
* unenclosed
Swell Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon (wood)
97
4
  Flute [fr. Bourdon]
8
  Open Diapason
73
2
  Piccolo [fr. Bourdon]
8
  Salicional
73
  Cornet Mixture III ranks
183
8
  Aeoline
73
8
  Oboe [labial]
73
8
  Voix Celeste [TC]
61
8
  Cornopean
73
8
  Gedeckt [fr. Bourdon]
8
  Vox Humana (Syn)
               
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
16
  Open Diapason [ext GT Gr.Fl.]
12
8
  Bass Flute [fr. Bourdon]
16
  Bourdon (wood)
44
8
  Flauto Dolce
SW
16
  Lieblich Gedeckt
SW
   
               
Couplers (knobs above top manual)
    Great to Pedal 8   Great to Great 4, Unison Off
    Swell to Pedal 8, 4   Swell to Swell 16, 4, Unison Off
    Swell to Great 16, 8, 4    
               
Adjustable Combinations
   
Great & Pedal Stops & Great Couplers Pistons 1-2-3-4-0 (thumb)
Swell & Pedal Stops & Swell Couplers Pistons 1-2-3-4-0 (thumb)
Universal Pistons 1-2-3-4-0 (thumb)
Pedal Stops Pistons 1-2-3-4 (toe, not adjustable)
  Two Neutral Bars
               
Pedal Movements
    Balanced Swell Pedal   Great to Pedal Reversible
    Balanced Crescendo and Diminuendo Pedal   Sforzando Pedal (Reversible)
               
Accessories
    Swell Tremolo   Action Current Generator
    Crescendo Indicator   Motor Starting Switch in Console
    Sforzando Indicator   Organ Bench w/ Music Compartment
    Electric Motor and Blower   (2) Pedal Lights & Desk Lamp
           
Sources:
     Church of the Holy Trinity web site: http://www.htcny.org/
     Dunlap, David W. From Abyssinian to Zion: A Guide to Manhattan's Houses of Worship. New York: Columbia University Press, 2004.
     Estey Organ Museum. Factory Contract of Estey organ, Op. 2654 (1927). Courtesy Larry Trupiano.
     Taylor, Frederick D. "Holy Trinity Church." Medieval New York web site.

Illustrations:
     Byron Company (New York, N.Y.). Interior (1931) showing Estey Organ Co. organ, Op. 2654 (1927).
     Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament (Christchurch, NZ) web site. Interior of Holy Trinity Catholic Church.
     Giles, Rodney A. Case and chamade of Lètourneau organ, Op. 53 (1997).
     Lawson, Steven E. Color exterior; Console of Lètourneau organ, Op. 53 (1997).
     Taylor, Frederick D. B&W exterior.