Who are we?
The city of Toulouse, European organ capital, boasts 30 organs of all styles and periods, nine of which are government protected listed monuments.
Further afield, the Midi-Pyrénéés region can count over 370 instruments within its borders.
All this makes this some of the richest organ territory in Europe.
This exceptional heritage has instilled in Toulouse an artistic dynamism of international influence, with the conservatoire CRR et CESMD organ department expanding their range to elite-level programmes, the creation of the International Xavier Darasse Organ Competition (Concours International d’Orgue Xavier Darasse) and the organisation of the International Festival Toulouse les Orgues.
The organisation behind Toulouse les Orgues, founded in 1996, is responsible for the promotion of this heritage through various activities :
- The running of a festival to present the instruments of Toulouse
Over 12 days, this festival offers a chance to discover the richness of Toulouse’s instruments through programming of high quality, variety, cross-discipline collaboration. This encompasses, of course, recitals in a traditional format, but also forays into dance, cinema, contemporary art, and shows for younger audiences.
The Festival was created in 1996 by Jan Willem Jansen and Michel Bouvard, both inspired by Xavier Darasse. They directed the Festival for 18 years, and it is now Yves Rechsteiner who is now responsible for the artistic direction.
- The creation of outreach projects Notably those directed towards school children, senior citizens and the disabled.
- The tuning and maintenance of Toulouse’s organs
Toulouse les Orgues, the team :
Michel Courtois, president
Yves Rechsteiner, artistic director
Aurélie Magnat, administrator
Nathalie Bacon, funding and partnerships
Mélanie Daoulas, communications manager