A word from organ builder George Taylor
While the history of the European organ reaches back well over a thousand years, no influence on its development has been more profound than the arrival of the Lutheran Reformation and its invention of vernacular hymnody. In the earliest days the faithful converts sang so lustily that they needed no accompaniment. Only gradually did the organ find a new role in leading the congregation in its hymns. Through this identity with the people’s song the organ and its music flourished, so that by the 18th century the instrument had reached heights of unsurpassed refinement and beauty. It is to this tradition that many organbuilders today turn for inspiration. Thus, every aspect of the new organ for St. Mark’s, from its design and construction to the voicing of its pipes can be traced to the surviving examples of 17th and 18th century organs of the Lutheran church. It is the clarity of this mission which gives the St. Mark’s organ its unique identity in the Bay Area.