Sunday, October 7, 2012

Not much embarrassment, really

I had a go at playing the pipe organ for a hymn at church today. Having had one, informal organ lesson about 9 years ago. 

It went surprisingly well. Lots of fumbles & mistakes, but the congregation was kind. And the 80 year old for whom it was a birthday present was pretty thrilled. 

Turns out pipe organs are significantly more difficult to play than pianos. I have a whole new respect for those who do it regularly.


  1. Hi, I landed on your blog and saw a post I could identify with!

    Did you do pedals, or manuals only? I've never been able to coordinate hands and feet well enough to play pedals in public, but my experience has been that older congregations don't seem to notice, and love the pipe organ anyway.


    1. Hi Caroline! Welcome :)

      I just used 1 manual, and simplified a bass line that only used 4 pedals. Coordination was a definite challenge.

      I practiced at home by putting my son's toy train ramps under the piano in the appropriate spots. Weird but useful.

      And you're right, the older people in the congregation were just thrilled to have the organ played.

    2. What a good idea re the pedals - but I don't know how I'd go without the auditory feedback as I practiced! I'll bear it in mind though if I get the chance to do it again.

  2. Good on you for having a go. I don't think I'd be brave enough to tackle it in front of anyone else.

    In the brief few months that we went to your church years and years ago, I used to love looking at the organ and wondering how hard it would be to play.

    It certainly is different to a piano. My sister had the opportunity to do some organ lessons when we were growing up (to complement the piano we were both learning at the time) but I didn't see the need to learn back then. It seemed a bit uncool. Regretting it now though :)

    1. You could always pick it up now. My mother's suggesting lessons :)

      Now I'm curious about you being at our church. I've been there since '97 but don't remember you...

    2. Yes, I think that probably says something about how infrequently we was end of 2004/early 2005. We were definitely fringe dwellers back then though, we lived a long way from church, had a newborn and I spent plenty of time breastfeeding out in the foyer :)

  3. It was great. Joan felt very loved.


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