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Father Willis Studio Series 80 [Back to Library]

Producer: Silver Octopus
Builder: Willis (Father)
Manuals: 4
Pedalboard: No
Audio Ouput:
Date Built:


The existing Father Willis libraries are based on samples taken from original Father Willis instruments including those in St George's Hall, Liverpool, Huddersfield Town Hall and other smaller church instruments. With the exception of a few stops that have been introduced on the larger instruments so that the models presented are more in keeping with the requirements of today's instruments, most stops remain at their original pitch and compass. An enormous amount of care has been taken to ensure that all stops no matter from where sourced, blend together as if they were from the same instrument.

Where possible, unaltered and original Father Willis (FW) pipework of the same period has been used but it is not always easy to find a stop in complete balance (or indeed, satisfactory working order throughout) on some of the instruments that were sampled. Therefore, it has been necessary to substitute carefully matched ranks or parts of ranks from other sources in one or two stops so as to provide more comprehensive and playable specifications where this has been found to be the case. Where pipework from other sources has been used, it has been carefully analysed directly against original Father Willis samples and edited to match. This is not dissimilar to what a pipe organ builder will do when restoring or rebuilding an instrument with replacement pipes where they are damaged or beyond repair.

A number of differently sized instruments are available which are designed to be representative of typical instruments found throughout the United Kingdom. In each case they are presented as complete instruments and not as unfinished parts of an instrument (excluding the 12 stop free trial). In some cases, extra stops that would not have been included in the original specification from the last half of the 19th Century have been provided (they don't have to be used). The reason for this is that almost every original Father Willis instrument with very rare exceptions, will have had these extra stops added as a matter of course during rebuilding either by later generations of the Willis family or other builders in order to satisfy the changing fashions and needs over the last 100 - 160 years.

Although the organs presented are not specific existing instruments as such they have been carefully modeled on real instruments. Many instruments exhibit almost identical specifications and indeed, identical scales, pressure and voicing and it is often only the acoustics of the building together with the balancing and regulation for the building that they are situated in that gives them their unique sound.

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