A native of Austria, Xaver Wilhelmy is an inventor, designer, and Certified Pipe Organ Builder. He designs and directs the restoration of keyboard instruments, and the production of glass organ pipes at GeShenke aus Glas in Staunton, Virginia, USA.
Visit the Wikipedia Article about Xaver Wihelmy.
Wilhelmy designed and built the landmark Wilhelmy American Flag Glass Pipe Organ, the first and only pipe organ in the world with all parts of the organ pipes made completely of glass, as well as other glass organ pipes and ranks in private collections around the world.
Wilhelmy has restored notable instruments including the Skinner Organ at University of Virginia’s Cabell Hall in 1998, and the Möller at Arlington National Cemetery’s Old Post Chapel in 2013 and many others along the way.
At the heart of our work as pipe organ builders is the desire to release God’s beauty in the earth. We facilitate worship by taking good care of the instruments we serve, and supporting the musicians that play them. We release God’s “lux aeterna” through our innovative work with glass and we gratefully respect and use the gifts of innovation and beauty that we have been given.
Wilhelmy is in frequent demand as a consultant, pipe organ conservationist, and is often called upon to diagnose especially challenging instrument defects and malfunctions.
Xaver Wilhelmy’s 30 year career with musical instruments began with a pipe organ building apprenticeship with Caspar Glatter-Götz at Rieger Orgelbau in Schwarzach, Austria. He continued his theoretical training at Oscar Walcker Orgelbau Schule in Ludwigsburg, Germany. He returned to Austria to work with Rieger until 1988, servicing and tuning existing instruments and installing and voicing new ones in Italy, Austria, Germany, Liberia, and the United States.
Caspar Glatter-Götz went on to found Glatter-Götz Orgelbau in 1993 in Owingen, Germany and is, along with Rosales Organ Builders, perhaps best known for the innovative Walt Disney Concert Hall pipe organ.
Rieger Orgelbau, founded in 1845, is one of the world’s most influential and innovative organ builders. They are known for their innovative design and quality craftsmanship.
Xaver Wilhelmy is the leading authority on Rieger Pipe Organs in the eastern United States. Sometimes we find Rieger organs with modifications that were made because the technician didn’t understand the innovations that Rieger has brought to the world of pipe organ building. It’s very important that Rieger instruments are cared for by builders who trained at Rieger.
In 1988 Wilhelmy joined Fehrle en Roeleveld Orrelbouers outside of Johannesburg, South Africa, as voicer, tuner, reed-manufacturer, and trainer.
In 1994 when the economy dropped in South Africa, Wilhelmy immigrated to the United States where he became Pipe Shop Foreman at Taylor & Boody Organ Builders, Staunton, Virginia until 1997 when he started his own venture.
Founded in 1977, Taylor & Boody Organbuilders specialize in gorgeous baroque style tracker organs with virtually all parts made in house. They are well known around the world for historical accuracy and quality craftsmanship.
Wilhelmy is the author of The Art of Casting High Lead Pipe Metal, published in the March 1998 issue of the International Society of Organbuilders Journal, and translated into German and French.
Wilhelmy teaches pipe organ fundamentals and innovation at The Wilhelmy School, in Staunton, Virginia.
Wilhelmy lives with his artist wife, Carmen, Coco the fearless border collie, and a collection of vintage automobiles, in Staunton, Virginia, USA.