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Jaroslav Tůma


    The firm was founded in the 1980s, when organ restoration was an unknown concept in the Czechoslovakia of that time. The cases of historic organs were restored, but the basics, the instrument itself, was largely ignored by most organists, by the employees of heritage institutes and by the owners of organs. Organ building firms, the number of which could be counted on the fingers of one hand, on the whole did not restore organs, but rebuilt them according to the wishes of the organists or their own designs.

    At that time, when we were ruled by a Communist government and the only interest in churches and historical instruments was their destruction, there was a whole series of unique Baroque instruments in a very pitiful state. The border areas, moreover, were marked by the intensive efforts of uneducated people, also non-churchgoers, to bring the work of destruction to completion through vandalism.

    I was at that time a young priest, who, prior to my theological education, had studied crafts at the Academy of Arts, Design and Architecture. I found myself in the situation where it was beyond the economic capacity of the parish to pay for the difficult repair of the organ. My first work, then, was the repair of the instruments in the parishes in which I served.

    Organs, however, have their own magic, known not only to organists and visitors to churches, but especially to those who are attached professionally to the instrument. Each organ is different, each is original, and old instruments, standing for years in a state of neglect, often deeply damaged, contain in themselves an incredible wealth of human craftsmanship and beautiful timbres. It seems to me that organs captivate you. From the time when I first heard the sound of an instrument which I had repaired playing again, I have had the good fortune to have entrusted to me the restoration of a series of excellent old instruments, among them some of the oldest and best in this country.

    Today I work with several specialist restorers and together we form a team which is capable of the complete restoration of an organ, including the case and ornamentation. We also build new instruments or replicas of old ones. Bar and slider chests with tracker action are always used. You can find examples of restored or replica work in the photo section.