In the Basilica of Cefalù, there are two pipe organs that are currently being restored. Around the 17th century, the best organ builders, including Raffaele La Valle and his son Antonio, were active throughout the Diocese, later becoming famous and sought after even outside Sicily. The organs were placed in the choir lofts, resting on four small columns, in the first inter-column on the south and north sides of the central aisle. Placed in an opposite position, they are called battenti, because thanks to the presence of two choirs, which alternated, they allowed an orchestral dialogue.
The first organ can be credited to Raffaele and dates back to 1612, while the other, the work of his son, is dated 1614. Anthony’s choir, in cornu evangeli, has a five-bay elevation and ten registers on a sixteen-foot base. Both organs, placed under the episcopate of Bishop De Quero Turillo, are characterised by pictorial decorations that follow the profiling and vertical course of the pipes.
An example of the organs and the double choir can still be seen in Venice, in the Basilica dei Frari. The choirs, located on two different and opposite choir lofts, are found respectively in the right and left choir lofts. The first, dating back to around 1732, was probably built by Giovan Battista Piaggia, while the other, designed a few years later, in 1795 to be exact, is the work of Gaetano Callido.