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English Organ in Rio di Janeiro


Tony Newnham
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Church of São José, Rio di Janeiro:-

 

A fascinating inquiry has come my way from a colleague in the Reed Organ world who has been help the above church try to track down information on their pipe organ, which appears to be of English origin. There is no visible makers plate or any other information on the instrument, but recently documentation has come to light that reveals that the London firm of Moore and Moore received payment for the instrument. This raises a number of questions.

 

Moore and Moore were perhaps best known as a piano manufacturer, founded from the cabinet making business of John & Henry Moore in 1838. (This date comes from a number of web pages that all seem to be based on a common original source!) According to the same web page, the firm was taken over by Kemble in 1933. The DBOB entry reveals that Moore & Moore were also reed organ builders, at least from before 1884 until 1921. It appears that they built at least one enharmonic reed organ

So the question is, why did this firm get involved with the supply of a pipe organ to Rio de Janeiro? Did they in fact build the organ? Or did they act as agents? If that was the case, who were the builders? Pictures of the organ in question can be seen at http://www.arteorganistica.org.br/saojose.html.

 

Any information as to the builder of this organ, and any further information on Moore & Moore would be gratefully received.

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Tony,

 

I have looked at the Portuguese version of the site but this offers no further information (I speak Portuguese, a necessity for playing the repertoire and reading treatises and articles both from Portugal itself and its former colonies). If you do get any further info in Portuguese please send me a private message and I'll be very happy to discuss translations with you. In the meantime I'll ask my colleague in Lisbon whether he has a contact in Rio whom I can then approach for further details.

 

John

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Tony,

 

I have looked at the Portuguese version of the site but this offers no further information (I speak Portuguese, a necessity for playing the repertoire and reading treatises and articles both from Portugal itself and its former colonies). If you do get any further info in Portuguese please send me a private message and I'll be very happy to discuss translations with you. In the meantime I'll ask my colleague in Lisbon whether he has a contact in Rio whom I can then approach for further details.

 

John

 

Thanks John

 

I've had a suggestion - based on the pictures - of Bevington as a possible builder. Also, I've found a reference in the on-line index of the British Organ Archive to a Wadsworth going to a R.C> church in Rio - I'm following that one up.

 

Thanks for the offfer of translation, if needed. I'll let you know if I or my colleague needs anything.

 

Every Blessing

 

Tony

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