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Borgentreich Organ Museum
The church organ as a cultural icon and a symbol of God's almighty power

The former town hall in Borgentreich, situated close to Brakel and Beverungen, is a historical building from 1850 in the late Classical style. Since 1980 it has been home to Germany's first organ museum, which charts the history and cultural importance of this most elegant of instruments. Types of organ on display at the museum range from the carillon and the 'bird-song' to the barrel organ.
No other musical instrument can compare with the organ in terms of the sounds that it produces and the sheer variety of forms it assumes. Originally, the organ had a decidedly secular image and was often put on display as an elegant showpiece. Its adoption by the church at Charlemagne's behest in 812 was by no means given, yet the tradition endures to the present day. In its infancy, the organ was an instrument that was merely tolerated in the Church, but over the centuries has become one of those most closely associated with it. For many people, organ music goes hand in hand with religious worship. Church organs play a major role both in the liturgy and in concerts. The mechanisms and the range of sounds that can be produced have long been a source of fascination.
Organs may not be as widely played as the piano, but it holds great importance from a religious and cultural perspective, a theme which is explored in the museum. Organ recitals are an integral part of the church calendar, particularly during the warm summer months. If you want to recreate the quality of music you can experience in the museum, there is quite a lot to learn: achieving the richest sound from an organ requires not only manuals and pedals to be mastered, but also the many stops to be pulled.
The organ is probably best known for the spiritual atmosphere it evokes in churches and cathedrals. It is an instrument which can appear somewhat out of place and imposing, but at the same time majestic and enigmatic. Organs are meant to be heard of course, not just put on display. Borgentreich organ museum adopts a hands-on approach where visitors can look around, touch the exhibits and perhaps even have a tinker themselves. It focuses on how the organs work, the way the sounds are layered, how they are made and what with, how organs evolved down the ages and what cultural significance they had. Original parts - including consoles, wind boxes and pipes - as well as metals, wood and tools used in manufacture are on show alongside a number of hands-on stations that produce authentic organ sounds. Open from Thursday to Sunday. 



A2, A7, A33, A44, B64, B241, B252