Monday, October 24, 2011

Special Musical Number on the Organ

Two Sundays ago, I was sitting in the foyer a couple hours after church when my bishop walked by. We chatted a bit and then he asked me if I would like to do a special musical number in church sometime.

"Sure," I said. "I could play something on the piano."

"Oh, you can play the organ," Bishop said.

"Uh, ok."

So, I am going to perform a musical number on the organ at some point in the near future.

Performing a musical number on the organ is significantly more difficult than performing a musical number on the piano, for (at least) three reasons:

First, it's the organ. The organ has multiple keyboards, plus the foot pedals, plus the volume and crescendo pedals, plus you have to pick all the stops. On the piano, you just sit down and hit a key and the sound that comes out is always the same. You can make the note louder or softer, but that's more or less it (I'm ignoring modern techniques of plucking the strings and whatnot). On the organ, you can have a mellow tone or a sharp tone or a nasal tone or a brassy tone or a billion other tones. That's a lot of choices.

Second, I don't own any organ music. I do own one little book of Bach fugues or something like that, but that's not something I'd play in Sacrament meeting, even if I did have the skill to perform them.

And third, to perform a musical number on the organ requires that I practice the organ. It is exceptionally difficult to practice an instrument when you don't own one. And as much as I'd love to buy an organ, it's not exactly at the top of my grocery list.

I do happen to have a few books of piano arrangements of hymns. I took those to church yesterday and found one I could modify to play on the organ. I've practiced at the Institute before, so maybe they'll let me do that again, but I don't like having to ask someone to let me into the chapel. Maybe I'll just practice on my piano (which is digital and has an organ setting) and hope for the best.


Schmath said...

Yay! I want to hear! Are you looking for suggestions?

This is one of the only organ solos I own. It's really pretty, and I usually leave out the pedals cuz I never got around to learning them, and I think it sounds fine without them.

Heather Dixon said...

I think you should do that one Bach piece, you know, the evil fugue one.

Also, dress up like a hunchback and laugh evilly as you play.

You might not have to do an organ solo again!

Betty Edit said...

Hey, thanks, Schmath! That looks pretty good. I will try that out tomorrow on the organ.

Heather--har har har. ;o)