Blackwood Arts (Blackwood Theater Organ Society) is a non-profit organization which promotes the appreciation and development of visual and performing arts.
Tucked away in northeastern Butler County lies an oasis for arts and culture enthusiasts; Blackwood Arts is defined by its rare artwork, beautiful landscaping, and most importantly, world-class organ music. While waiting for a performance to begin, guests are welcome to explore the Blackwood grounds. Each corner of the property is decorated with unique buildings and unexpected surprises. At the beginning of each hour, the sound of bells chiming through the air from the clocktower nestled in the trees. The brick, four-story building hosts a 1960s vintage Schulmerich carillon and a six-foot-wide clock face. The Spring House, distinguished by an arched bridge over a small pond, is a short walk on a path along the outskirts of the woods, its second-floor often occupied by the featured performer. The polished grounds provide a little something for anyone willing to venture along the paved, tree-lined pathways.
The main attraction is the theater organ performance in the Music Room. Known for accompanying silent films, the theater organ was initially created to replace the need for a full orchestra while giving life to motion pictures. This amazing instrument is able to replicate sounds from flutes to percussion and requires masterful musicians to utilize its full potential. The intention of Blackwood Arts is to showcase a traditional movie house experience as a work of art. Founders Ben Robertson and Don Fink purchased the property in 1970 and quickly began work designing and building their own structures among the rolling terrain. Soon, the pair bought and refurbished a Wurlitzer pipe theater organ and started to host concerts featuring internationally-acclaimed organists.
Concerts are held June through October, kicking off their season with a free recital performed by students receiving scholarships from Blackwood Arts, soon followed by a Make-A-Wish benefit concert. Oftimes, you can find a performance that accompanies a silent movie. If you love music, Blackwood Arts is a one-of-a-kind experience!