Students of Totaleigh Music visited the Neuadd Pendre in Tywyn – home of the town’s famous Wurlitzer, where they were treated to a spectacular programme of music performed by professional organist David Lowe.

During the visit they learnt about the history and mechanics of the instrument which has 657 pipes.

A favourite feature for students on the tour was the “spooky piano” – a clever piece of mechanical engineering which enables the Bluthner grand piano to be played remotely from the organ console.

Tywyn Wurlitzer was built in Tonawanda, New Yorka. The three-manual nine-rank Wurlitzer organ was originally installed in the Granada Cinema, Woolwich in London in 1937 where it was officially opened by no less than Reginald Dixon, best known to everyone as ‘Mr Blackpool’. The organ is now owned by John Smallwood of Tywyn who has generously arranged its permanent loan to the people of the town through Tywyn Town Council.

A concert on Saturday, 27 May, will feature Donald Mackenzie who is considered one of Europe’s finest theatre organists.

He has presided at the Odeon Leicester Square organ for almost 30 years and is an acclaimed concert organist. His reputation extends to being considered the doyen of silent film accompanists on the organ, and he has travelled world-wide to demonstrate his art.

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At the end of the Totaleigh Music visit, donations were made towards the upkeep of Neuadd Pendre, and thanks were given to David and John for their time in facilitating a fascinating visit.