Conversations about all things organ playing. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene talk with experts from the organ world - concert and church organists, improvisers, educators, composers, organ builders, musicologists and other people who help shape the future of our profession.
SOPP697: How to Teach in an Organ Studio Where One Student is Playing With One Finger Only and Another - Rather Well
Today, we’d like to talk about how to teach in an organ studio where one student is playing with one finger only, and another rather well.
SOPP696: What to do when you come to practice and there is a funeral in the church?
Today, I would like to talk about what to do when you come to practice and there is a funeral in the church. It has happened to us many times before. We had our Unda Maris Studio rehearsal planned, but before that, we were going to record some organ music on our church organ. But before entering the church, we noticed widely opened doors which means something is going on. And sure enough, in one of the chapels, there was a funeral being prepared.
SOPP695: Total Organist Community Migrated from Basecamp to Discord
Today, we’d like to talk a little bit about how and why Total Organist Community has migrated from Basecamp to Discord.
SOPP694: My technique has really slipped a good bit, most of my repertoire is rusty, and if I’m not careful I can get pretty discouraged
This question was sent by Ed, he is one of our Total Organist students and he writes:
You asked me to get back to you about what I’m practicing, and I had to wait a few days to figure out how to explain this. As I mentioned in my prior email I have a masters degree in organ performance from many years ago, and then let it lapse for several decades. Now that I’m retired I’m trying to make the magic happen again, and it’s been challenging to figure out how to put the pieces back together. My technique has really slipped a good bit, most of my repertoire is rusty, and if I’m not careful I can get pretty discouraged.
One thing that has helped me is that I put together the attached spreadsheet. I took several days to go through all the music in the boxes to try to remember what I had learned already. I even found pieces that clearly I had played because my handwriting is all over the paper, yet I could not remember anything about the piece. I put all this information into a spreadsheet to help me understand my priorities and the current state of each of the pieces I was working on. It’s been very helpful to keep my focus to resurrect all of the things I’ve learned already well while still branching into some new material.
I’m in a good daily routine now. I spend about 30 minutes split between Hanon and the Davis textbook pedal exercises to get my dexterity back, and then I look through this repertoire list and pick some things that I’m interested in moving up on the current status list. I get pretty tired by mid afternoon, so I save the evening for watching YouTube videos from your site. I also got a copy of the New Oxford Organ Method which I find delightful. One chapter a day seems to be good to remind me of what I used to know.
Keep up the great work. Every hour you put into organization is going to have tremendous benefits and increase the availability and respect for what you’ve done. Thanks so much.
SOPP693: Alina Rotaru on Early Music, Playing Harpsichord and Sigismundus Lauxmin International Harpsichord Contest
Welcome to Secrets of Organ Playing Podcast #693!
Today's guest is harpsichordist Alina Rotaru. Alina studied piano and choral conducting at the music academy in her hometown of Bucharest. After moving to Germany, she studied harpsichord with Siegbert Rampe and Wolfgang Kostujak at the Folkwang University of the Arts Essen, with Bob van Asperen at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, and with Carsten Lohff and Detlef Bratschke at the University of the Arts Bremen. She is an active soloist and ensemble player, and also in charge of various orchestral, opera, and sacred music projects of the German Early and Late Baroque as an artistic director. As a soloist, she has performed across most of Europe, as well as in Japan, South America and USA. She teaches at the University of the Arts in Bremen. Her solo recordings of harpsichord works by JP Sweelinck, JJ Froberger, and English virginalists have earned excellent reviews in the music press and among their peers. Together with viol player Darius Stabinskas, Alina is the co-founder of the ensemble MORGAINE, which focuses on the music of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
In this conversation, we talk about her love for early music, playing harpsichord and Sigismundus Lauxmin International Harpsichord Contest which she organised the 2nd time this year.
SOPP689: I want to improve my organ pedal technique
This question was sent by Martin, and his response is to the question, “What are his goals in organ playing in the next 3-6 months?” So he writes:
“Improving my pedaling technique, independence of hands and feet”.