Essentially, the organ that we have today is the one that Joseph de Alsúa built. The case is the one built by Antonio Pérez and the reforms are the ones carried out by Antonio Ruiz Martínez.
The cornerstone of the eventful history of the Nava del Rey organ is its magnificent case, built by Antonio Pérez, and possibly designed under the supervision of Martínez Maqueda. All subsequent interventions have been executed having in mind the preservation of the case, but this was not always possible. Therefore, the case has been transformed somewhat with each intervention over the years.
The most important intervention was the removal of the rear facade, which had speaking pipes. This meant an extraordinary loss with regard to plastic and sound features, and was carried out to favor the new instrument designed by Alsúa, which replaced Antonio Pérez’s instrument.
As to architectonical and ornamental aspects, the case is complete and it has the original polychromy, even though not all of it dates from the time of the construction of the organ. All in all, the polychromy added to Alsúa’s organ dates from ten years later and it is possible that it was added by the same person.
The case has three sections. The lower section houses the action and the cadereta (positive organ) and has five vertical sections; the central vertical section has a base, decorated with a grotesque face, that connects to the floor plan of the main section. The main section moves the central vertical section forward by means of the great rectangular pipes of the flautado (1794 modification).
The rear facade is very similar although the carving is somewhat less abundant than the one on the front facade.
The organ is richly decorated, both the facades and the sides, which along with its elegant architecture, makes the case of the Nava del Rey organ one of the best Castilian cases.
The original concept of the action is clear due to the fact that the time and scope of the reforms, which were not numerous, are obvious, as well as the aim of some of them.
It has a classic structure, with the great organ (órgano mayor) placed at the level of the first cornice and the interior cadereta in the lower section.
The wind chest of the great organ has two sections made of walnut.
It has roller boards.
It has several channel boards for the facade and elevated small wind-chests for several registries.
The cadereta works by means of thrust action and has five channel boards in order to move the stops in the pallet box to the right.
The pipe work was almost complete for the composition we found, but it was necessary to built numerous new pipes to complete the final composition.
The flautado on the facade has a disposition that does not fit with the architecture of the case because it is not the original one. There are mixed pipes from both facades. Therefore, we believe that they are pipes from Antonio Pérez’s organ.
Even though the remaining pipe work was in a poor condition, it had not lost its original parameters and, therefore, its harmonization.
All pipes are metallic except the ones of the contras (pedals), which are made of wood.
The bellows belong to the reform executed by Antonio Ruiz and are characteristic of this master: one wedge bellow with four feed pumps and manual operation by means of crank, crankshaft and connecting rod.
Harmonization and tuning
- Harmonization has been made at pressure 65 mm wc.
- It had preserved the tuning pitch since the stopped registers have the lids welded and is in A: 418 Hz at 15ºC.
- Mean-tone temperament.