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Celebrating the pipe organ, the King of Instruments

Mailbag: “90 Minutes?”

February 11, 2008

Dear Michael,

Because of scheduling on the previous PBS stations we used to listen to, it’s been years since I’ve listened to Pipedreams. I now listen fairly regularly and notice it is a 90 minute program. I thought it was a 2 hour program. Has it always been 90 minutes, or was it two hours long years ago?
Do I just not remember correctly?




The first set of 14 PIPEDREAMS Programs (which aired in 1982 between the first week of January and the first week of April, making the year 2007 our ‘first 25th anniversary’) were of varying length, some as long as 2 hours, some as brief at 75 minutes. There was no original intent that PIPEDREAMS be an ongoing series; those first 14 programs were just a ‘special offering’. But by the time they had aired, it had become apparent that there might be a market for a continuing program. Most assuredly it was clear that there was plenty of ‘content’ from which to build those future programs, so we revived the name and revived distribution in October 1983 (thus 2008 is our ‘second 25th anniversary’ year). At that time, the programs were ‘regularlized’ to a length of 87:50 (or essentially 90 minutes), and have been that length ever since. A few years ago, as a convenience to stations with small staffs and an ability to automate their weekend broadcasts, we added another 29-minute post-PIPEDREAMS module (of related non-organ music) to create an easier-to-automate 2-hour block. This is aired by some stations, the the majority still broadcast only the 90-minute PIPEDREAMS part. However, you can access those additional 29-minutes if you sign up for our email newsletter (there are several to choose from, scroll down to find Organ Notes from Pipedreams to sign up)
I hope that fills in the blanks in your ‘historic memory’.    :-)





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