Saenger Pipe Organ Fund

The Heartbeat of Lady Saenger

This video was produced to play before each movie during our Classic Movie Series. It offers a good behind-the-scenes look at the Great Saenger Pipe Organ restoration project. Enjoy. Produced by Duncan McCall Advertising.

Friends of the Saenger (FOS) is proud to announce that our next project in our continuing effort to improve the Saenger Theatre is the complete restoration and enhancement of The Great Saenger Pipe Organ. In addition to restoring the console and pipes that have been hidden in the walls of the Saenger (some since 1925) we are going to greatly increase the size and capacity of the organ. When finished, The Great Saenger Pipe Organ will rival any of the large theatre organs in the country. The “Heartbeat of the Saenger” will be restored!

Donate Now

We Need Your Help

Of course, this magnificent organ won’t be restored to its original glory without donations. After much research, FOS determined that we could restore and enhance The Great Saenger Pipe Organ for approximately $330,000. With the restoration complete, the organ is now valued at over $3 million! It will provide future audiences with thrilling concerts to rival any theatre organ in the country.

While our primary fundraising goal has been met, we are still soliciting contributions to continue enhancing, expanding, and maintaining the organ. If you would like to be a part of this historic project please fill out the form below.

Tom Helms

Organ

To help us achieve our goal, Friends of the Saenger has teamed up with internationally acclaimed pipe organ builder and musician Tom Helms. As a resident of  Pensacola, Tom has made it his mission to make The Great Saenger Pipe Organ among the finest in the country. “When we are finished, the Saenger Pipe Organ will be larger than the organ at the Fox Theater-Atlanta or the organ in the Chicago Theatre,” says Tom. “It will even compare to the organ at Radio City Music Hall. When this new organ is unveiled, it will make a significant impression in the theatre and music world. Northwest Florida will be proud of  The Great Saenger Pipe Organ.”

Pipe Organ Demonstration
Would you like to hear a demonstration of a similar theatre organ? This segment of All Things Considered on NPR highlights the pipe organ at the Paramount Theater in Seattle. The Paramount is home to one of the country's few surviving and working Wurlitzers. It was built in 1927 when the theater was built and the man who plays it does a great job of describing and demonstrating all the bells and whistles that are associated with organs like our very own Great Saenger Pipe Organ. Listen here.

Now is the Time!

We need to act now! Recently Tom noticed that the vintage components our project requires were suddenly available at great prices. Tom brought it to the attention of FOS and suggested that “now is the time” to proceed with the restoration project. He said that by moving ahead now, we can restore this jewel at a fraction of the cost. We all agreed and quickly sent him to Oregon to bring back the first of many pipes to come. The process has already begun and we need your help to finish this exciting culmination of the Saenger’s restoration.

We Need Your Help

Tom Helms and Sherri Weeks Tom Helms and Sherri Weeks invite you to be a part of this historic project.

Of course, this magnificent organ won’t be restored to its original glory without donations. After much research, we have determined that we can restore and enhance The Great Saenger Pipe Organ for approximately $330,000. When the restoration is complete, the organ will be valued at over $3 million. It will provide future audiences with thrilling concerts to rival any theatre organ in the country.

If you would like to be a part of this historic project please fill out the form below.

Donate to the Organ Fund

What We Have

The following is a list of components that have been at the Saenger since 1925. These need to be restored or repaired at a cost of approximately $230,000.

Ranks # of Pipes
TUBA HORN 85
DIAPHONE 85
TIBIA CLAUSA 97
CONCERT FLUTE 97
SALICIONAL 73
CELESTE 61
CLARINET 61
VOX HUMANA 61
CHRYSOGLOTT 49
TIBIA CLAUSA 97
DIAPASON 73
VIOLIN 73
VIOLIN CELESTE 61
ENGLISH HORN 61
CORNET 73
SAXOPHONE 61
KINURA 61
ORCH OBOE 61
VOX HUMANA 73
QUINTADEN 61
XYLOPHONE N/A
MARIMBA N/A
BELLS N/A
PIANO N/A
BASS DRUM N/A
SNARE DRUMS II N/A
TAMBOURINE N/A
CASTENETS N/A
BIRD WHISTLE N/A
CHINESE BLOCK N/A
TAP CYMBAL N/A
SIZZLE CYMBAL N/A
CRASH CYMBAL N/A
SLEIGH BELLS N/A
AIR CONDITIONING N/A
WINDLINE MUFFLER N/A
RELAY SYSTEM N/A
CONSOLE UPDATE N/A
CABLE / WINDING / FRAMING N/A
WINDCHESTS RESTORATION N/A

What We Need

To make our pipe organ a world-class instrument, we need to add the following components. The cost to purchase, repair and install will be $100,000.

Ranks # of Pipes
PRINCIPAL 73
DULCIANAS 146
FRENCH TRUMPET 85
PLEIN JEU 244
HARMONIC FLUTE 73
GAMBAS 146
MUSETTE 61
FLUTE CELESTE 61
FRENCH HORNS 61
VOX HUMANA 61
VIOL DE ORCHESTRA 146
VIOLINS 146
FOURNITURE 244
OBOE HORN 73
OCTAVE 73
HORN CELESTE 61
LIEBLICH FLUTE 85
SOLO TIBIA 85
VIOLAS 146
TUBA MIRABILIS 61
VOIX CELESTE 146
VIOL 12
ENGLISH HORN 12

What is a Rank?

Ranks ranks
 

The pipes are situated in rows called ranks. Each rank contains many pipes. For instance, the violins listed above has 146 individual pipes! These photos show several ranks of pipes located at the Saenger. When the restoration is finished, our organ will have 52 ranks. For comparison, the Radio City Music Hall organ has 58 ranks.