Rhinegold Photo credit: francescograssi
Gaudí's Sagrada Família basilica will be the new home of the Cavaillé-Coll organ

Harriet Clifford

Cavaillé-Coll organ donated by nuns to Barcelona’s Sagrada Família

10:08, 6th December 2019

The only Cavaillé-Coll organ in Catalonia has been donated by nuns to Barcelona’s Sagrada Família and will be placed in the crypt beside the tomb of the basilica’s architect, Antoni Gaudí.

Built in 1896 in Paris, the instrument is being transferred from the Sacred Heart of Jesus convent in Barcelona to replace the crypt’s 1926 organ, which was damaged beyond repair during the Spanish civil war in 1936, as were an estimated 90 per cent of the city’s organs.

The organ is in the same neo-gothic style as the crypt and has 10 registers and 548 pipes. It is currently being restored by Albert Blancafort in a €150,000 project, which will be completed in September 2020.

Blancafort told C&O, ‘The organ’s build and style fit perfectly in the crypt: both are built in the same neo-gothic style and the organ fits into the same space that housed the previous instrument. It is also musically similar in style, sharing with it a romantic build, two manuals and swell box. The sound of the Cavaillé-Coll organ is wide and welcoming, ideal for both liturgical choir accompaniment and concerts. At the end of this project, the crypt of La Sagrada Família will have an instrument again and Barcelona will restore this jewel of organ building, making it available for everyone to enjoy.’

Funds are being raised through a press sponsorship campaign, calling on people to donate to the Sagrada Família crypt. Individuals who contribute €50 or more will see their name inscribed on a commemorative plaque located in the crypt.

The Sagrada Família is one of Gaudí’s many modernist designs in the city, the construction having begun in 1882 and the building remaining unfinished today.



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