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The pipe organ at the NFM

The building of the pipe organ at the National Forum of Music has been completed. Thanks to this, the wonderful organ repertoire of the past centuries will be brought to life at the NFM, and the opportunity to play contemporary organ works will open the way to getting acquainted with new compositions. The instrument was designed and made by organ builders from the Orgelbau Klais Bonn workshop, which boasts over one hundred years of tradition and experience. Its regal sound will perfectly match the acclaimed NFM acoustic.

Do You know that:

  • It is the largest instrument ever invented.
  • In many respects (volume, sound, timbre) it outclasses the symphony orchestra.
  • Its sound is produced by vibrations of air flowing through pipes grouped into voices.
  • It has a track action, i.e. a system for transferring movement between the key and valves controlling individual pipes. It has bellows.
  • Its prototype were ancient small wind instruments, such as panpipes.
  • The first organ-type instrument, dated to the 3rd century B.C., was the water organ constructed by the Alexandrian mechanic and mathematician Ktesibios.
  • It was initially very large, so it required two organists to play it, and playing it was only possible with fists or elbows.
  • The sound of this instrument in the Baroque era was bright and light.
  • During the Romantic period, the symphonic organ was created – the sound of the instrument became darker and heavier, voices imitating orchestral wind and string instruments were added, and the way of intonation became softer and more delicate.
  • In the first half of the 20th century, the largest organ in the world was built in Wrocław's Centennial Hall

Outstanding work

A state-of-the-art organ will crown the NFM Main Hall. Equipped with 4 700 pipes, of which the shortest is just a few millimetres, and the longest over 10 metres long, it can produce sounds from the lowest heard by humans, 16 Hz, to very high – 18 000 Hz. The organ stop action has 80 voices (colours), including high-pressure and percussive. It can be played from two independent playing consoles – fixed and mobile. The organ is also fitted with recording equipment.

The NFM organ will be an outstanding work, inscribing itself for ever into the history of Wrocław, Lower Silesia, Poland, Europe and the world. Designed and made by organ builders from the Orgelbau Klais company based in Bonn, with over a century of tradition and experience, the organ will complement the NFM acoustic with its regal sound.

The scale model of the organ

The model reflects the most important features of the instrument on a small scale and shows the mechanism of its operation during playing.

We can see how the wind chest pumps air, which creates sound in the pipes. The keyboard fragment consisting of three white and two black keys allows you to play five notes. They have a different sound, depending on the register, which we select by means of three register stops, i.e. the levers located on the sides of the keyboard, used to turn on or off individual voices or connections in the organ.

We invite you to have a look and try to play the scale model of the largest musical instrument invented so far.


Organ concerts

January 2022 | Sunday
Organ concerts
Main Hall
Paul Jacobs' Organ Recital
Organ at the NFM
March 2022 | Sunday
Organ concerts
Main Hall
Wayne Marshall's Organ Recital
Organ at the NFM

Pipe organ / fot. Karol Sokołowski

The Pipe Organ at the NFM

Jak powstają organy NFM
Warsztat Klais Orgelbau
Philipp Klais |
Przyjazd piszczałek organowych
Prace w Sali Głównej NFM
Jak działają organy?
Mari Fukumoto

NFM – City of Wrocław institution of culture co-managed by:

Wdrożenie e-usług w Filharmonii im. Witolda Lutosławskiego we Wrocławiu - etap 2 współfinansowany jest przez Unię Europejską ze środków Europejskiego Funduszu Rozwoju Regionalnego w ramach Regionalnego Programu Operacyjnego dla województwa dolnośląskiego na lata 2007 - 2013 oś priorytetowa 6. Wykorzystanie i promocja potencjału turystycznego o kulturalnego Dolnego Śląska (Turystyka i Kultura), działanie 6.5. Działania wspierające infrastrukturę turystyczną i kulturową.