Hunter Hall Wurlitzer Pipe Organ

218 California St
Rio Vista, California

2010


Listen to Greg DeSantis at Hunter Hall


Console

The instrument at Hunter Hall, built by Wurlitzer in 1926 for the Orpheum Theatre in Seattle, initially accompanied silent films. It played in the theatre until 1967 when the theatre was razed. By the late 1970s, it played at Uncle Milt's Pizza Parlor in Vancouver Washington for 20 years.

Hunter Hall, named for the late Bill Hunter, is a former Masonic Hall. Dedicated in 1954, it later fell into neglect due to declining membership. Bill and Jan Hunter, involved with theatre organs for many years, rescued it and arranged with long time Organ Buff, Geoff Hansen, a Wurlitzer collector, to install his Wurlitzer from the Seattle Orpheum Theater.

The Hall has proved itself to be an excellent venue for this Wurlitzer.  The large central auditorium is 2,400 square feet and has concrete floors, concrete walls, no windows and a fine open beamed ceiling so that the sound of the organ develops very well without becoming overbearing.  The organ is situated in two chambers, high off the floor on either side of the auditorium to take excellent advantage of the fine acoustics.  The exposed 16' Wurlitzer wood Diaphones proved an authoritative bass.

Bill & Jan created a splendid arrangement with Geoff, who was one of the last managers of the old Avenue Theatre silent film operation.  With the help of Dave Moreno the three manual, fourteen rank Wurlitzer was soon singing forth in the former secret society's hall of smoke, mirrors and celebrated ritual.  Bill had wonderful opportunities to enjoy the room and the organ before his health failed.   With some additions, the organ is now a 3/16.

A fine addition to the instrument recently, is a large Ampico grand piano that was once a part of the fine Wurlitzer owned by the late NorCal member Aura Edwards.   It was installed in her home in Lafayette where many NorCal ATOS events were held over many years.   With the extraordinary technical assistance of Curt Wood, this grand piano now plays again as a part of the organ.

Hunter Hall also has a few interesting music machines including a rare European Bursens Orchestrion, a Coinola X, two reproducing grands and an extremely rare Robert Morton style 49 2/4  pit organ with a horseshoe console and two side boxes.   Research discloses that this is one of only four in existence.  Also in the auditorium are a huge collection of old movie palace fixtures and much, much more interesting memorabilia.

A building with this many instruments requires a dedicated team to provide the technical expertise to keep them in tip top shape.   Dave Moreno and Julie Porter continue to provide continuous improvement and constant maintenance that all the instruments at the Hall require.


Specification

PEDAL
32 Resultant
16 Diaphone (unenclosed)
16 Tuba Profunda
16 Diaphone
16 Tibia Clausa
16 Bourdon
8 English Horn
8 Tuba Horn
8 Open Diapason
8 Horn Diapason
8 Tibia Clausa
8 Clarinet
8 Cello
8 Oboe Horn
8 Flute
16 Piano
8 Piano
8 Acc. to Pedal
8 Great to Pedal
8 Solo to Pedal

Bass Drum
Kettle Drum
Crash Cymbal
Jazz Cymbal
Cymball
Triangle
Tom Tom
ACCOMPANIMENT
8 English Horn
8 Trumpet
8 Tuba Horn
8 Open Diapason
8 Horn Diapason
8 Tibia Clausa
8 Clarinet
8 Viol d' Orchestre
8 Viol Celeste
8 Salicional
8 Oboe Horn
8 Concert Flute
8 Vox Humana
4 Octave (Diapason)
4 Piccolo
4 Viol
4 Viol Celeste
4 Salicet
4 Flute
4 Vox Humana
2 2/3 Twelfth (Flute)
2 Piccolo (Flute)
8 Piano
8 Harp
4 Harp
Chrysoglott
4 Acc. to Acc.

Snare Drum
Tambourine
Castanets
Chinese Block
Sand Block
Sleigh Bells
Jazz Cymbal
Cymbal
Tom Tom

Acc. Second Touch
8 English Horn
8 Trumpet
8 Harmonic Tuba
8 Tibia Clausa
8 Clarinet
8 Piano
Sub Harp
Glockenspiel
Cathedral Chimes
Triangle
8 Solo to Acc.
GREAT
16 English Horn
16 Trumpet
16 Tuba Profunda
16 Diaphone
16 Tibia Clausa
16 Orchestral Oboe
16 Clarinet
16 Brass Sax
16 Contra Violin
16 Vox Humana
8 English Horn
8 Trumpet
8 Tuba Horn
8 Open Diapason
8 Horn Diapason
8 Tibia Clausa
8 Orchestral Oboe
8 Kinura
8 Clarinet
8 Brass Sax
8 Viol d' Orchestre
8 Viol Celeste
8 Salicional
8 Oboe Horn
8 Concert Flute
8 Vox Humana
5 1/3 Tibia Quint
4 Octave (Diapason)
4 Piccolo
4 Violin
4 Viol Celeste
4 Salicet
4 Flute
2 2/3 Tibia Twelfth
2 2/3 Twelfth (Flute)
2 Piccolo
2 Fifteenth
2 Piccolo (Flute)
1 3/5 Tibia Tierce
1 Fife (Flute)
8 Piano
4 Piano
8 Harp
Glockenspiel
Xylophone
Chrysoglott
16 Great to Great
Great Unison Off
4 Great to Great
16 Solo to Great
8 Solo to Great
16 Post Horn
SOLO
16 Tuba
8 English Horn
8 Trumpet
8 Harmonic Tuba
8 Open Diapason
8 Horn Diapason
8 Tibia Clausa
8 Orchestral Oboe
8 Kinura
8 Clarinet
8 Brass Sax
8 String Celeste
8 Oboe Horn
8 Vox Humana
4 Piccolo
2 2/3 Tibia Twelfth
2 Piccolo
1 3/5 Tibia Tierce
8 Piano
8 Harp!
Glockenspiel
Xylophone
Bells
Chrysoglott
Cathedral Chimes
Calliope
16 Solo to Solo
Solo Unison Off