Since 2018, the Contius Foundation, a foundation of public interest, has installed a Baroque Bach organ in the Sint-Michielskerk in Leuven.
This unique instrument has two manuals, thirty eight registers, 2021 pipes.
On the recommendation of internationally renowned organists at home and abroad, the organ is being recreated after the example of an instrument by the important 18th-century organ builder Heinrich Andreas Contius.
H.A. Contius was close to the Bach family, and left for Riga in Latvia with a letter of recommendation from Johann Sebastian Bach, in which he is considered one of the very best organ building had to offer at the time.
The organ being built in Leuven is a reconstruction of the instrument that H.A. Contius himself built in 1774-1779 for the Holy Trinity Church in Liepaja (Latvia).
This is done with materials and the techniques used by Contius, with the intention of reconstructing an instrument that was missing in our country and far beyond, significantly enriching the cultural heritage of Leuven and Belgium, but above all is the missing link for the study , training and the best possible performance of the music of the whole Bach family, and by extension baroque music.
In an idea of Sigiswald Kuijken, the seven-ton organ was erected on a fully wooden high hall specially designed by architect Jan Mannaerts, at historic height, on top of the new entrance.
Thus, for the first time in our country, soloists, choir and orchestra will be able to make music around the organ.