1780 Gaetano Callido Organ

St. Zenone Church, Boara Polesine/Veneto, Italy


Short Introduction and History

The organ of St. Zenone, Boara Polesine/Veneto (40 km south of Venice) is a beautiful example of a large-sized organ of the famous Venetian organ builder Gaetano Callido. This is confirmed by the presence of the Contrabassi 16’, made of open wooden 16’ pipes, by the composition of the 7 rank Ripieno up to Trigesimasesta and the presence of the small Regale-like stop, the Tromboncini 8’.

Most stops are divided in Bassi and Soprani (Bass and Treble), due to the split keyboard, which is common amongst historic Italian organs. The first octave is called “scavezza” (short), typical for these organs.

A beautiful feature of this organ is the fact that it has been left almost unaltered from its original construction, thus no one pipe had to be rebuilt, except the Trombone of the pedal board, stolen during the World War II and a few broken pipes of the Tromboncini.

The church archives only show small interventions until the siginificant restoration in 1992, carried out by Alfredo Piccinelli, the famous Italian organ builder and a specialist of Callido organs. Being a specialist in organ building but not very much considering rules of the musical canons, all organs “touched” by him were set to equal temperament. Today we know by research, that Callido never used equal temperament but very often a Tartini-Vallotti like tuning, so we decided to set back the virtual organ to this most adequate Italian historic tuning.

The splendid Ripieno gives to the organ luminosity and clarity, though the measures of the fonds, especially the Italian Principale 8’ are very large. The beauty and mildness of its sounds is due to the very low wind pressure, about only 42 mm (!) water column, as found in Italian historic organs.

During the restoration the organ case and its colour was completely changed for exigency of visibility. Now again the Boara Polesine’s Callido organ gives the visitor the mystery of its sounds, its solemnity and its vivid colour (Text by Paolo Osti).

The church room has wet acoustics of about 4.5 seconds of reverberation.

See Location in Googlemaps

Recording technique

The organ was recorded in May/June 2004 with 44 kHz, 24 bit, multi-channel for Hauptwerk 1


We would like to thank the rectory and parish of St. Zenone, Boara Polesine, for enabling and supporting this project.
Special thanks to Paolo Osti, Rovigo, for setting up all the contacts, translations and local help and to Padre Don Tristano for his patience.

Virtual Console



Actual equal tuning (probably since 19th century) at a1=440 Hz
The virtual organ is set back to Tartini-Vallotti temperament (18th century)

The Voce umana is a down tuned rank!

Manual compass:
C, D, E, F, G, A - d3 (short octave)
Divided manual: Bassi C-c#1, Soprani d1-d3

Pedal compass:
C, D, E, F, G, A - a (short octave)
c, d, e, f, g   repeated from lower octave
a = "Rollante" (simulation of a drum)
Pedal fixed coupled to manual

  Stops Mnemo Modern
01 Principale  bassi P8B 8'
02 Principale  soprani (d1) P8S 8'
03 Ottava O4 4'
04 Quintadecima XV 2'
05 Decimanona XIX 1  1/3'
06 Vigesimaseconda XXII 1'
07 Vigesimasesta XXVI 2/3'
08 Vigesimanona XXIX 1/2'
09 Trigesimaterza XXXIII 1/3'
10 Trigesimasesta XXXVI 1/4'
11 Flauto in VIII bassi FlVIIIB 4'
12 Flauto in VIII soprani (d1) FlVIIIS 4'
13 Flauto in XII FlXII 2  2/3'
14 Cornetta Corn 1  3/5'
15 Voce umana (d1) Voc Beat
16 Tromboncini bassi TrB 8'
17 Tromboncini soprani (d1) TrS 8'
18 + 19 Contrabasso
(+ Ottava)
Cb+O Pedal 16'+8'


(+ Contrabasso+ Ottava)
Tr Pedal 16'+8'


Loaded Version

Memory Requirements 3)

Processor Speeds 2)

16-bit, compressed1)

950 MB

≥ 1 GHz  SingleCore

Lossless compression (no loss of sound quality!)

Recommended:  Minimal configuration: Dual-Core, 2 GByte RAM

3)  To load this organ into Hauptwerk you will need enough free memory in your computer, due to the amount of playable stops, not including the operating system or any other programs that may be running!         

We recommend a professional audio card (e.g. RME-Series) and a studio headphone (e.g. AKG Reference Headphone K701, K712) for optimal sound and room impression.


The following demo pieces were recorded with the Hauptwerk1 Software and the virtual organ sample set with no additional effects processing.

Live Demos Fabio Mancini, Milano,  Italy

Girolamo Cavazzoni (~1515 - ~1580)
Hjmnus Ave Maris Stella
Principale bassi e soprani | 2:41 min

Giovanni Gabrieli (1553-1612)
Canzon seconda | 4:17 min
Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, XV
- XV
- Ottava
+ XV

Girolamo. Frescobaldi (1583-1643)
Toccata quinta dal secondo libro | 4:44 min
Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, XV, XIX, XXII, XXVI, XXIX
- XV
Ped.: Contrabasso et Ottava

Domenico Zipoli (1688-1726)
Pastorale | 2:44 min
A, C: Principale bassi e soprani, Flauto in VIII bassi e soprani, Tromboncini bassi e soprani
B:       Flauto in VIII bassi e soprani
Ped.: Contrabasso et Ottava

Giovanni Morandi (1777-1856)
Tema e Variazioni op. 11

Tema: Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, Flauto in VIII bassi e soprani, Flauto in XII,
Cornetta , Tromboni | 0:37 min
Var. 2: Flauto in VIII bassi e soprani, Tromboncini bassi | 0:55 min
Var. 3: Principale bassi e soprani, Voce umana | 1:42 min
Var. 5: Flauto in XII | 0:50 min
Finale: | 1:51 min
Solo:  Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, Flauto in VIII bassi e soprani, Flauto in XII, Cornetta,
Tromboncini bassi e soprani, Contrabassi, Tromboni
Tutti: + Tiratutti Ripieno + Rollante

Claude Balbastre (1727-1799)
Noel "Votre Bonté Grand Dieu"
Tema: Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, XV, XIX, XXII, XXVI, XXIX, Flauto in XII ,
Tromboncini bassi e soprani (Echo: Tromboncini bassi e soprani) 0:51 min
Var. 1: Flauto in VIII bassi e soprani | 0:50 min
Var. 5: Principale bassi e soprani, Flauto in VIII bassi, Tromboncini soprani | 0:50 min

Francisco Correa de Arauxo
Quinto Tiento de Medio registro de Tiple | 4:40 min
Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, Flauto in VIII soprani, Cornetta

J. S. Bach /A. Vivaldi : "Concerto BWV978" 1st mov | 2:45 min
Man.:  Principale bassi e soprani, Ottava, Ripieno

© OrganArt Media, all rights reserved
No demo sounds may be used or transmitted in any form for public purposes without the prior permission of the publisher!

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