KATOWICE 〓 Europe’s largest pipe organ is born; Esa-Pekka Salonen celebrates with his organ music

2023/01/24

On January 13, the largest pipe organ in Europe was unveiled in Katowice, Poland. The special concert was given by conductor and composer Esa-Pekka Salonen, who led the Katowice Symphony Orchestra of the Polish National Radio in a world premiere performance of his own organ concerto.

The new organ was installed in the 1,800-seat Concert Hall of the National Radio, where the orchestra is based. The organ is 13 meters high, 9 meters wide, and 6 meters deep, with over 7,000 pipes and 105 stops.

It also has an integrated console with four manuals, plus a remote console, at a cost of approximately 4.4 million euros. It was built by a Slovenian organbuilding company and took more than five years to build.

Salonen’s work is approximately 25 minutes long, and in addition to the Katowice Symphony Orchestra, the Berlin Philharmonic, Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra jointly commissioned the composition.

The special concert will be performed by Latvian organist Iveta Apkalna. The program included Lutoslawski’s Symphony No. 4 and Bartók’s “The Miraculous Mandarin”.

Photo:Narodowa Orkiestra Symfoniczna Polskiego Radia w Katowicach


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