“Tabernacle Organ Renovation Under Way,” Ensign, May 1985, 103
The renowned pipe organ in the Salt Lake Tabernacle on Temple Square is currently being renovated, says Robert Cundick, Tabernacle organist. But the work will not silence the instrument’s voice.
The renovation will include tonal regulation, console rebuilding, cleaning, and other mechanical work. It will also include installation of additional ranks of pipes and of electronic equipment.
The original Tabernacle organ of the 1860s has undergone numerous changes through the years. The current Aeolian-Skinner instrument was installed in 1948, and the present renovation is planned for completion in 1988, the fortieth anniversary of that installation. The refurbishing work is under the direction of Schoenstein & Co. of San Francisco.
The organ will continue to be used for daily recitals and for weekly Tabernacle Choir broadcasts during the renovation, Brother Cundick said. The well-known tonal structure of the instrument will not be altered.
“The pipe scaling and overall quality of the instrument are first-rate, and its effect in this magnificent acoustical setting has been marvelous,” said Jack Bethards, president of Schoenstein, “but some refinement in detail is indicated. And, of course, after thirty-seven years, minute influences such as dust and countless temperature changes may have caused the original setting of many of the 10,857 pipes to change.”