The organ at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral was installed at the time of the church’s construction in the mid-1920s. It was built by Ernest M. Skinner and Company, who had developed a national reputation for building large organs for some of the most prestigious churches, concert halls, colleges, and auditoriums in the country. These include The Cathedral of St. John the Divine (op. 150, 1906); Carnegie Music Hall, Pittsburgh (op. 180, 1910) and St Thomas Episcopal Church, Fifth Avenue, New York City (op. 205, 1913). The organ’s initial specification was four manuals, forty-three stops, thirty-six ranks and 2,497 pipes, including an Echo chamber in the rear gallery containing four ranks of pipes (removed in 2001 to undergo repairs, returning in 2014).
The current specification of the organ can be found here. In addition to over one thousand pipes that have been added to the organ since the 1920s, the most recent additions to the instrument included many digital stops, enhancing both the organ’s power and versatility. This latest project, completed in 2002, was Phase One of a two part phase to overhaul the organ. The second phase of the renovations involves the upkeep of the pipework already in existence, since much of the leatherwork needs replacing, in order to ensure the organ's ability to function reliably for decades to come.
On completion of the reinstallation, organists from some of the world's most prestigious cathedrals visited Miami to take part in the Jubilee Recital Series that ran from January to May 2014. Click here to download the series program which includes a more detailed history of the instrument.
In spite of its current imperfections, the organ remains one of the most valued and treasured instruments in South Florida. The instrument’s most crucial “stop” – the acoustic of the cathedral nave – remains as vibrant as when the organ was first installed. Organists interested in seeing and playing the organ should contact the Director of Music.