Concert Hall

The Concert Hall is the centerpiece of the Moody Music Building. Its dimensions are the same, proportionally, as those of the famous Grosse Saal in Vienna’s Musikverein. Its acoustics have been widely acclaimed, and it has been used for several commercial recordings.

With two balconies, the Concert Hall seats almost 1000. The front lip of the stage may be removed to expose an orchestra pit used for ballet and opera productions. Since it was designed from the start as a pure concert hall, there is no fly space or proscenium. Austrian curtains adorn the entire lengths of the side walls and may be raised or lowed to alter the acoustics. Above the stage there is a bank of plexiglass clouds that affect the distribution of sound in the room. Motors for the clouds and the curtains are controlled by a panel backstage.

The Concert Hall was inaugurated in December 1987 with a concert by Marilyn Horne and the Alabama Symphony Orchestra.

Holtkamp Organ

The organ in the Concert Hall of the Frank Moody Music Building was created by the Holtkamp Organ Company of Cleveland, Ohio, at the instigation of Warren Hutton, then professor of music and university organist. The instrument was funded entirely by private donors.

There are sixty-five and one-half independent stops and eighty-six ranks of pipes. There are some five thousand pipes in the instrument. The key action is mechanical (tracker action), and the stop action is electric. There is mechanical intermanual coupling, but there is also additional, electrical coupling for Swell to Great, Positiv to Great, and Swell to Positiv. These three special couplers are designated with an “E,” so there is a “Swell to Great E” coupler as well as the usual “Swell to Great” coupler.

Walter Holtkamp, the builder, described the physical organization as follows: “The Solo, an enclosed division, is located directly above the console. Above the Solo is the Great and at the top of the central section we placed the Swell. Flanking the Great and Solo is the Pedal. Above the Pedal, on each side, is the Positiv.”

The instrument was installed in 1988 and featured in that year’s September issue of The American Organist. Here are the specifications:

Pedal (32 notes)
32 Subbass
16 Principal
16 Subbass
16 Quintadena
8 Octave
8 Openflute
4 Choralbass
4 Nachthorn
2 Hornlein
2 2/3 Rauschbass IV
32 Basun
16 Posaune
16 Dulzian
8 Trumpet
4 Trumpet
Great (61 notes)
16 Principalbass
8 Principal
8 Gemshorn
8 Rohrgedakt
4 Octave
4 Spitzflöte
2 2/3 Quinte
2 Superoctave
13/5 Terz
2 Mixture IV
1/2 Scharf III
16 Trumpetbass
8 Trumpet
Swell (61 notes)
16 Bourdon
8 Gamba
8 Gamba Celeste
8 Rohrflöte
4 Geigen Principal
4 Harmonic Flute
2 Principal
1 1/3 Quinte
1 Mixture IV
1/3 Cymbal III
16 Fagott
8 Trompette
8 Oboe
4 Clairon
Positiv (61 notes)
16 Pommer
8 Flöten Principal
8 Bourdon
8 Quintadena
4 Praestant
4 Rohrpfeife
2 2/3 Nazard
2 Octave
2 Blockflöte
1 3/5 Tierce
1 1/3 Larigot
1 1/3 Mixture IV
8 Trumpet
8 Cromorne
Solo (enclosed, 61 notes)
8 Copula
4 Koppelflöte
2 Doublette
1 Principal
2 2/3 Cornet II (TC)
1/4 Zimbel III
16 Rankett
8 Vox Humana
4 Schalmey
Great to Pedal
Swell to Pedal
Positiv to Pedal
Solo to Pedal
Swell to Great
Swell to Great E
Positiv to Great
Positiv to Great E
Solo to Great
Swell to Positiv
Swell to Positiv E