The dedication naming the Barhydt organ for donors John and Coralee Dey was held April 25, 2010 in the Sondheim Center for the Performing Arts at the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center. The organ lofts were named for the organ restorer, John Connet. Organists Carl Moehlman, Steve Berg and Werner Elmker performed for the dedication concert.
This 21 rank, 1800 pipe, 3 manual Möller organ was installed in Barhydt Chapel in 1966 on the campus of Parsons College. John Connet took the repair and maintenance of the Barhydt Chapel organ as a project when he arrived in Fairfield and since those early years has followed it to the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center for installation.
When it was necessary to demolish Barhydt Chapel in 2000, the Maharishi University of Management donated the organ to the Fairfield community and the architects of the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center designed the organ lofts necessary to house the pipes as the building was being planned. John Connet dismantled the organ and found storage areas around Fairfield. It took 200 hours to pack and box the organ. During the storage period John reconditioned and modernized along with the installation of a computer system in the console. After 8 years in storage, John began reinstalling the organ as the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center began construction.
Since the dedication, the John and Coralee Dey Barhydt Organ has been featured in Artist Series concerts, wedding ceremonies and community concerts.
Above: Dr. Lynda Hakken, Cornell College organist, plays Felix Mendelssohn's Organ Sonata #6, Chorale and Variations at the 20th Anniversary Concert of the Chamber Singers of Southeast Iowa, directed by Elaine Reding (video footage by Glenn Chumley).