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Mailbag: Foot pedals for practice?

December 6, 2005

Dear Michael:
I have been playing piano for 40 years. I have been taking organ lessons at church for 6 months. I am an assistant organist on a Johannus opus 5, chapel size organ. Recently I have started practicing on a pipe organ, custom made by a Vermont firm with 2 manuals, in a small church, using previous pipe organ pipes and adding to them.

What type of organ would you recommend for my home use to practice foot pedals?

Susan Paisley
Woodbridge, CT

Dear Susan:
I will assume that the church instrument upon which you take lessons has a full 32-note pedal compass according to American Guild of Organists ‘specifications’, as should your Johannus Opus 5 (it might have only 30-notes). In which case, any electronic instrument with 30 or 32 pedal keys should provide you with a good practice machine.

Such an instrument will also likely have full-compass (61-note) manuals.

Good luck with your studies!




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