Have a Seat at the Organ & Sightseeing Visit (Combo Offer)
From May 17th to October 20th 2023
Climb up onto our loft and have a seat around the majestic Casavant organ. Enjoy a specially crafted repertoire played by Mr. Pierre Grandmaison, while you enjoy a breathtaking view of the nave. Mr. Grandmaison is celebrating his 50th year as our titular organist. The talented soprano Caroline Bleau will accompany Mr. Grandmaison on the following dates in 2023:
May 19th; June 16th; July 7th & 21st; August 18th; September 1st & 15th; & October 6th.
The recital lasts 50 minutes and starts at 1:30 p.m. A sightseeing visit is included upon purchase of your ticket here.
Photos and videos are allowed. You can also meet the artists after the concert.
Please note that the access to the organ loft includes about 60 steps. Seating is limited and we can accommodate 60 people, so get your ticket early as they sell fast!
Pierre Grandmaison, titular organist
Since 1973, Pierre Grandmaison has been the titular organist of Notre-Dame Basilica. Born in Montréal, he studied piano at the École de musique Vincent-d’Indy in Outremont while working on the organ with Eugène Lapierre and Françoise Aubut. He earned his Bachelor of Music degree from Université de Montréal in 1970.
He has a busy schedule at the Basilica, as he performs for some 400 celebrations each year: weddings, funerals, Masses and more. He also loves to share his passion for the organ by welcoming the Basilica’s many visitors with the Take a Seat at the Organ activity. The activity is available to the general public every Friday during the summer. Get your tickets now.
Visitors of the Basilica can also listen to more musical interpretations played by Mr. Grandmaison on the Casavant Organ from Wednesday to Friday, beginning at 1:30 p.m., from May 17th to October 13th, 2023. The music reverberates throughout the nave for approximately 50 minutes. All you have to do is buy a sightseeing ticket to enjoy it.
Inaugurated in 1891
Inaugurated in 1891, it now has 7,000 pipes with the longest one stretching over 32 feet (9.75 m) and the smallest one at a quarter-inch long (6.35 mm). It contains 92 stops on 4 manual keyboards of 61 notes and a pedalboard of 32 notes.
A Few Years Earlier, in 1885...
The contract to build Notre-Dame’s organ was signed a few years earlier in 1885. La Fabrique de la paroisse Notre-Dame de Montréal chose Casavant Frères, a new firm founded five years earlier, to carry out this ambitious project. In fact, the pastor wanted a four-manual organ that would become the largest in North America. The Casavant firm then sent one of the Casavant brothers to Europe to meet with some of the most renowned organ builders. It was in France that Casavant met Aristide Cavaillé-Coll, who restored the great organs of Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Church of Saint-Sulpice in Paris. This meeting was important for the design of Notre-Dame de Montréal’s organ, which is part of the French symphonic tradition of the 19th century.
Notre-Dame de Montréal’s organ is the greatest instrument in North America and is matched only by Notre-Dame de Paris.
This Week at Notre-Dame