Mary Jones, Organist and Director of Music
Jack Thrasher, Assistant Organist
Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church
When the Allen organ at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church in Anniston, Alabama was greatly affected by a lightning strike to the church, they turned to Allen once again!
Mary Jones, Organist and Director of Music, stated she loves the sound of Allen organs, and the ability to have the voicing adjusted as she would like. She loves the feel of Allen consoles, the quality construction, the keyboards and everything feels different than that of other organ companies. She also stated that she loves all the various controls on the organ. This particular Designer Series RL-58 had some custom controls added. Being able to have the choir division and more 8' choices on the choir division playable from the front, where the cantor sometimes leads, is very helpful. The trumpets are also playable from the other side of the room as well as from the main organ.
The following is excerpted from a letter written by Assistant Organist Jack Thrasher to Allen Organ;
"The new organ maintained all the features of the older organ, plus it has newer upgrades custom-designed for the needs of our church. Without the expert design assistance and follow-up training from our dealer, we would not have the beautiful instrument that we now have. The mixture of sounds is phenomenal! The cabinetry appears to have been the work of a master craftsman. We could not have asked for anything better, and are extremely pleased and gratified to have this organ in our church!"
This organ installation is featured as an Allen Organ ad in the March 2014 edition of Pastoral Musicians magazine.
Justan J. Foster, Organist
First Reformed Church of Scotia
Scotia, New York
When the First Reformed Church of Scotia selected a builder to create their hybrid instrument, they turned to Allen. The following is excerpted from a letter written by Organist Justan J. Foster:
"First, I must say that when the process of selecting an organ to replace our failing instrument began, this was a letter that I did not anticipate writing for an ending that I could not have predicted.
I visited the Church of the Annunciation in Ilion, NY, last July (2012) to listen to a recently installed (Allen) Q370. Based on my own short-sightedness, I fully expected to politely walk away after the demonstration and go on my merry way never to consider Allen again. For this, I must profoundly apologize. What began on that day was a year's journey in designing and installing a most splendid masterpiece that is fully appreciated by our congregation and music department.
Allen was selected as the builder for our custom hybrid instrument from a field of many distinguished builders due to their commitment to quality and customer service-principles all too absent in today's world. The design process we experienced allowed for enthusiastic creativity and promoted a deeper sense of collaboration than might be expected with this undertaking. Creating the custom stop list and console proved to be a most enjoyable experience and particularly rewarding for me, as an artist, to paint with such broad strokes of tonal color. The hard work exhibited by our Allen Dealer, from proposal to voicing, has yet to cease, and reflects the integrity and ethics of Allen Organ Company that was demonstrated during several trips to the factory.
This project was one of many joys and sorrows, as our benefactor was a long-standing (no pun intended) member of the choir; and, this was a project that several congregation members were unable to see through to fruition, though we know that they would rejoice in the way our worship has been supplemented. Part of the reason that we settled on a hybrid was the symbolic way in which it reflected our congregation: pipes-both reincorporated and newly designed-to reaffirm our traditions, and digital ranks for additional resources to enhance our worship for the many years yet to come. Again, I (we) say kudos to you on a magnificent instrument that will serve the next generation(s) in our journey of faith."
photography courtesy of Christine Batson
Dr. H. Gerald "Jerry" Aultman
Professor of Music Theory and Chapel Organist
Dick Baker Chair of Music Missions and Evangelism
Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
Fort Worth, Texas
"15 years ago, at Southwestern Seminary, we chose a large, four-manual Allen for Truett Auditorium. I have been greatly pleased with this instrument and its versatility in both traditional and contemporary styles of worship. The new 3,500-seat MacGorman Chapel features a larger Allen augmented by 30 ranks of pipes. I look forward to playing this thrilling instrument for years to come.
At the First Baptist Church of Dallas, it has also been my pleasure to oversee the selection of a three-manual Allen for the chapel. And, on Easter Sunday of 2013, our new five-manual Allen will make its debut in the fabulous new worship center nearing completion in downtown Dallas.
These instruments have helped the organ retain its rightful place in worship and in the education of church musicians at both Southwestern Seminary and at First Baptist Church. I am thankful to the leadership of both institutions for the wisdom shown in these decisions and for the consummate knowledge, expertise and passion of the Dallas/Fort Worth Allen Organ Company representatives."
Dr. Jerry Aultman
Director of Music Ministry, Morrow United Methodist Church, Maplewood, New Jersey
When Morrow Memorial United Methodist Church decided to replace their pipe organ, they turned to Allen.
The following is excerpted from the church's website:
"This organ was designed to make worship more inspiring. It is rich with a kaleidoscope of different sounds, able to be plaintive or triumphant, mysterious or declamatory, whispering or roaring. All divisions except the String can be assigned to antiphonal speakers discreetly installed in the rafters over the balcony. This allows for greater support of congregational singing and permits special dialogue effects between the front of the sanctuary and the rear. The String Division is installed over the central transept area, inspired by the celestial divisions that builders would regularly install in transept domes during the pre-Depression heyday of organ building. The Festival Trumpet speaks from the balcony and is suitable for fanfares and ushering a bride down the aisle. We have a King of Instruments which will serve us for decades to come. Soli Deo Gloria!"