Concert celebrates 150 years of pipe organ

Thomas Heywood with the Hobart Town Hall organ

A spotlight will be cast on a special piece of Hobart’s heritage this month, as the Hobart Town Hall grand organ turns 150 years old.

The spectacular pipe organ will be showcased at the fingertips of internationally acclaimed Australian concert organist Thomas Heywood in a special anniversary concert on Sunday 22 March.

Mr Heywood will play a 50-minute recital of classical works that have featured in the organ’s history.

“They will be works by some of the world’s greatest composers, selected for their significance to the organ and the city of Hobart,” Mr Heywood said.

“When these pieces were originally played, they were creating history; these were the moments that we now look back on as establishing the Town Hall – and the organ – as central to Hobart’s development and cultural life.”

Lord Mayor Anna Reynolds, who will launch a commemorative feature-length DVD and CD at the concert, said the Town Hall pipe organ had played an important part in the city’s history.

“Since its opening in 1866, the Town Hall has been an important place for social and formal gatherings and special occasions,” Cr Reynolds said.

“The pipe organ has provided a musical backdrop to many moments in Hobart’s history and this concert will celebrate the role it’s played.

“This concert will, in effect, create the next piece of the organ’s – and the Town Hall’s – continuing history.”

The anniversary concert will be held in the Hobart Town Hall on Sunday 22 March from 2.30 pm. Tickets are available from eventbrite.com.au. The concert will be followed by the launch of the DVD and CD The Heart of Hobart and a celebratory reception.

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