Edoardo Bellotti plays the Italian organ at the Memorial Art Gallery, during the 2018 Rochester convention.
The Organ Historical Society celebrates the pipe organ each year through a convention featuring instruments of historical interest in one location in North America. The pipe organ community gathers at these conventions for fellowship, recitals, lectures, and to sample the local culture and architecture. In many instances, the work of a local organbuilder (recent or historical) is highlighted. Non-members are very welcome to attend, although members receive a significant discount on registration, so we encourage attendees to join. The E. Power Biggs Fellowship can provide funding for first-time attendees of OHS conventions.
Host a Convention
Are you proud of the historic pipe organs in your area? Would you like to share them with the rest of the OHS membership?
The Organ Historical Society is seeking proposals to host conventions in 2022 and 2023, and we would love to come visit! If you’ve ever wanted to show off the organs in your area to the rest of the OHS membership, this is a great opportunity. As a first step, please contact the CEO, Ed McCall to start a conversation about the possibility of hosting. After this, an initial proposal will need to have a preliminary list of organs to visit and a preliminary itinerary, as well as a list of people who would be willing to serve on a convention committee. For complete information on hosting a convention, please download the convention guidelines here:
Welcome to the Buckeye State!
The 2020 Convention Committee is pleased to host the 65th annual convention of the Organ Historical Society. Columbus is a dynamic cosmopolitan center spanning three counties and transcending the boundaries of the settlements established at the nexus of the Scioto and Olentangy Rivers. Pipe organs of the capital city range from new-to-old and represent a broad cross-section. Our convention will trace antique influences along with recent modern contributions of the 21st century.
Cultural surprises await as we trace musical history throughout the Capital City and greater Central Ohio. From rural towns to major urban centers, we’ll explore many key pipe organs and venues representative of significant moments in organ building history. We’ll enjoy many culturally iconic organs that can be described as “oldest extant,” “last built,” and “magnum opus.” Visits to academic institutions and houses of worship will even include those connecting to OHS founding member and first archivist Homer Blanchard. Nineteenth and early twentieth century Ohio builders Schwab, Koehnken, Barkchoff, Stevens, Votteler-Holtkamp-Sparling, and A.J. Schantz & Sons, will be featured and juxtaposed with instruments by national firms Felgemaker, Pilcher, Roosevelt, Schuelke, Skinner, Kimball and Robert Morton. Modern musical marvels won’t go unnoticed, with organs by late twentieth and twenty-first century builders Brombaugh, Beckerath, Klais, Fisk, and Fritts. Local Ohio shops are represented with restorative work and care by Muller Pipe Organ Company, Peebles-Herzog, Inc. and JC Wilson & Associates Pipe Organs. No two organs alike –small-to-large, strategically chosen for performance diversity and representing the rich musical history of the region.
Plan to visit early or stay late, as our hotel is next to the Historic North Market, adjacent to the “Short North” entertainment district with over sixty bars and restaurants of all types and price points. Please visit our webpage often as more information is added or updated about the schedule, registration and. We look forward to greeting you in Columbus!
Chair, OHS 2020 National Convention
The OHS Mission Statement
The Organ Historical Society celebrates, preserves, and studies the pipe organ in America in all its historic styles, through research, education, advocacy, and music.
The Organ Historical Society
330 North Spring Mill Road
Villanova, PA 19085 – 1737
(484) 488-PIPE (7473)