Last week a lifelong friend and I treated ourselves to a concert at the Adelaide Town Hall to hear the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra perform Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto and Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 from the New World. It was a wonderful evening, the solo violinist was Nicola Benedetti and the Orchestra was led by London's Royal Philharmonic Orchestra's Permanent Guest Conductor, Garry Walker.
At the rear of the stage is the magnificent pipe organ pictured above.
The original organ was built in 1875 and served well for some 100 years before being replaced just 22 years ago with what you see here. It was built by J Walker & Sons in the UK and was the largest pipe organ built in the UK for 100 years. It's installation coincided with some major Town Hall refurbishments and cost A$1.3m to build. It weighs in the vicinity of 25 tonnes and contains 4500 pipes ranging in length from a few millimetres to 5-6 metres, thus providing an enormous diversity of pitch and dynamic range. Its components are made from either wood or metal and the pipes are handmade, using a technique that has not changed in 400 years.
[Courtesy ABC Radio's "Stateline" program]
p.s. We'll have to arrange another night out to hear it in action!