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Celebrating the pipe organ, the King of Instruments

Mailbag: “Beginner’s Program”

December 18, 2007

Dear Michael,

I have written once before and listen frequently. Also I REALLY enjoyed the program Piping Hot. This program featured 2 of my favorite organists and my favorite organ - the lamented 1976 Akerman & Lund. Anyways the reason I am writing… I feel guilty and even insulting by offering you program suggestions.

But I‚ve never been short of cheek so here goes. I have recently starting taking organ lessons after many long hours of practice at the piano and have finally taken this giant step into the organ world. Listening to the wide range of repertoire and organists is inspiring, truly. They are miles away from my level of ability. However this is not discouraging, it fuels ones passion and desire, not in the competitive sense so much but to create beautiful sound.

I would like to see not necessarily an entire program, but a section about beginning organists that are in the baby steps of organ playing. Discussing what obstacles, encounters, people, organs etc have influenced them to make their step into the wide world of the pipe organ. Also providing selections of music that beginners can play. Many people (myself included) who are excellent pianists believe that organ playing is an impossible task; until realizing just how possible it REALLY is. However it is no small walk in the park, but you don‚t have to be Hans Fagius or Virgil Fox to have fun and make wonderful sound on the organ.

Thanks,
Gareth

 

Gareth,

Thanks for some interesting ideas. Let’s see if and when I can do something with them.

Don’t be discouraged, as there is plenty of relatively simple organ music (some of which you actually hear in current broadcasts, though perhaps not pointed out as such).

Best,

JMB

 

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