The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art has been selected as the recipient of a $1.5 million grant from the Wyncote Foundation to be used for the restoration of the Ringling’s Aeolian Organ Opus 1559 from 1924. The Aeolian organ, which is prominently displayed in the grand court of the Ca’d’Zan mansion, was used by John and Mable Ringling to provide background music during their dinner parties.
The Ringling has been fundraising for this project over the last several years, raising nearly $245,000 from local donors. These gifts will be combined with the grant to move forward on the restoration of the organ. Parsons Pipe Organ Builders of Canandaigua, New York, has been selected to perform the restoration work, which is expected to take more than two years. The Ringling’s organ will be shipped to New York for the majority of the restoration.