The Miller-Scott Organ has been installed and is currently in the process of being voiced. In this article from the September 2017 issue of Organists' Review Erik Wm. Suter provides a brief history of organs at Saint Thomas Church since 1913. He explains how the Miller-Scott Organ fits into this tradition and the ways in which it will fulfill the complex needs of both performers and parishioners at the church. Mr. Suter delves into the technical and aesthetic consideratsions of both the organ itself and how it will interact with the rest of the building both visually and sonically.
In the spring of 1996 the gallery instrument was dedicated as the Loening-Hancock Organ. The firm of Taylor & Boody of Staunton, Virginia built the instrument which contains twenty-one stops over two manuals and a pedal. The instrument is inspired by the tradition of organ building which was active in the Netherlands and North Germany in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Stop and key action are mechanical and the temperament is Kellner.
The Martha J. Dodge Continuo Organ was built and initiated in December, 2001. This superb portative instrument, consisting of 4 ranks and pipes, was built by the firm of Taylor & Boody.
The Hauptwerk console, built by Ortloff Organ Co of Brookline, Mass., was installed in August 2016. Its initial purpose is to provide temporary organ leadership in the chancel of Saint Thomas Church in the 22-month period between the removal of the Arents Organ and the arrival of the Miller-Scott. At that time, the Hauptwerk console moves to Saint Thomas Choir School to serve as a practice instrument. Hauptwerk technology reflects a new idea in digital organ thinking. Most digital organs have attempted to simulate a pipe organ through sounds sampled from various instruments. The Hauptwerk model does not try to create its own tonal palette, but instead to recreate specific historic instruments through intensive, specific sampling. Thus, Hauptwerk technology has found widespread application in homes and studios, allowing regular exposure to the timbres and balances of historic organs for practice and study. Dozens of historic organs are available; the 1874/1934 Willis at Salisbury Cathedral is the sample set presently loaded onto the Saint Thomas Hauptwerk. During this interim period, the principal instrument for hymns and voluntaries remains the Loening-Hancock (Taylor & Boody 1996, expanded in 2016 with a third manual and additional registers).