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Freemasons' Hall to host Organ concert after almost two years in lockdown

Published: 2 August 2021

The Grand Temple at Freemasons' Hall will be the venue for the Second Organ concert of the year, on 5 August 2021.

The concert, given by renowned organist D’Arcy Trinkwon will be a celebration of the summer season and the easing of Covid-19 restrictions, will be held at Freemasons’ Hall and is free for all. While enjoying the concert, visitors will be able to marvel at the magnificent Willis pipe organ, which resides in the Grand Temple of Freemasons' Hall in London, an Art Deco masterpiece completed in 1933.

Mr Trinkwon is one of the outstanding organists of his generation, acclaimed for his artistic mastery and virtuoso fervour in the service of his art. Having performed in international festivals and concert series in halls, cathedrals and churches around the world, his engagements include recording, broadcasts, masterclasses, teaching and concerto performances – most recently with the Manchester Camerata, the Royal Northern Sinfonia and the Hove Symphony orchestras.

For the occasion at Freemasons’ Hall, the organist has selected many wonderful pieces including: Overture to the Overture ‘St Paul’, Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847), arranged by W T Best (1826-1897); Concert Variations on the Austrian Hymn, Op.3, John Knowles Paine (1839-1906); Symphony in C minor, Op.47: II. Scherzo, Frederick Holloway (1873-1954); Sonata Eroïca, Op.94, Joseph Jongen (1873-1953); Pastorale, Jean Jules Roger-Duccasse (1873-1954); and Studio da Concerto sopra la melodia gregoriana del ‘Salve Regina’, Raffaele Manari (1887-1933).

The audience will also experience the Art Deco splendour of Freemasons’ Hall. The Grand Temple, located in the central courtyard of the splendid art deco building, is rich with multicoloured details of blue, gold and white. The Freemasons’ headquarters also features the majestic Willis organ with its ornate pipes, as well as stunning mosaics that adorn the ceiling.

The original organ was installed in 1933 by Henry Willis, the third generation of an extended family line of organ builders. It originally had three manuals and 43 stops, giving a total complement of some 2,220 pipes, and was the last big organ built by the Willis firm. After 80 years, it was in need of complete renovation, which was carried out in Durham by Harrison & Harrison in 2014 and included cleaning, repairing and re-voicing the existing mechanisms, as well as mounting a new case of some 400 pipes on the east wall.

Dr David Staples, chief executive of the United Grand Lodge of England, commented: “This new organ concert is set to be a breath of fresh air for all of us this summer. After almost two years facing various lockdowns, British citizens are overdue some joy and fun in their lives.

“We have prepared a great show so that our visitors can not only appreciate amazing classics, but also take the opportunity to discover the enchanting architecture of Freemasons’ Hall.”

Book your free tickets here

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