Waning funds may end Philippines' 40-year bamboo organ fest

February 24, 2015 8:24 AM

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A nearly 200-year-old Philippine bamboo pipe organ, said to be the oldest and most complete in the world, has survived time, storms and wars. But an annual concert festival that has showcased its unique, lilting music in a Roman Catholic church for four decades may be playing out for the last time due to waning funds and interest in a country where many have been enthralled by modern Western music.

The clear, flute-like sounds produced by the organ's 902 bamboo and 129 metal pipes have captivated music lovers for decades. By pulling different knobs, an organist can make the instrument produce distinct sounds that one player said was like calling on different members of an orchestra, one after ...

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