A Year on Temple Square

The Salt Lake Tabernacle

By Jan Pinborough

Church Magazines

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Come with us this month for a look at an important place on Temple Square.

For an extreme music lover like Matthew N., it’s a very exciting day.

Matthew plays violin and piano and sings in a children’s choir. When he isn’t making music, he’s often thinking about it. A few weeks ago, Matthew discovered a new passion—the organ. So imagine how excited he was to hear the Tabernacle organ, one of the most famous organs in the world!

There’s an organ recital every day on Temple Square. Today Brother Richard Elliott played the Tabernacle organ.

After the recital, Matthew got an up-close look at the organ. The organ is made of two parts—the console (where the organist plays) and the pipes (where the sound comes out).

Brother Elliott showed Matthew how everything works. The organ has six keyboards, including one for feet.

Matthew saw the pipe chamber behind the pipes. A big pump blows air into the pipes. The biggest pipes are over 32 feet tall.

“Music can lift your spirit,” Matthew says. Today his spirit was soaring to the sky!

There’s a set of knobs, called “stops,” for each keyboard. Each stop gives the notes on the keyboard a different sound. The organ can sound like a harp, a trumpet, a flute, and dozens of other musical instruments. With all the stops pulled out, the organ has a huge, magnificent sound. That’s Matthew’s favorite.

Photographs by Christina Smith and John Luke