I’ve been following a new blog, well new to me, anyway, called “Secrets of Organ Playing: down to earth tips, advice and training” written by Dr. Vidas Pinkevicius. (N.B. I’m not so sure that one can learn how to play the organ without some human-to-human contact!) One of his latest posts was called “How can this go wrong,” and described the pitfalls and trials of an organist performing in public. He says:
You think you can play it perfectly, you practiced it hundreds of times before and here comes the day of the recital or any other public performance. You feel so confident that even the question “how can this go wrong?” seems a little funny.
1. You might make a mistake in the pedals and panic.
2. You might look down at the pedals and lose your place in the manuals.
3. You might not get the response from the listeners that you wanted.
4. You might start comparing yourself with others.
5. You might have to adjust or change your program due to the organ’s current condition.
6. Your registration might be too soft/too loud when the room is full of people.
7. The actual length of your program might be too long/too short in comparison to your calculations.
8. Your music selections might not resonate with your audience.
9, The organ might present a few surprises of its own and you will have to adjust.
10. There’s always a risk of messing up registration changes or page turns (even when it’s done by the assistant).
Organ playing is an art and art is always risky because it touches and changes people and leaves you vulnerable for the world to touch you back.
Well, today it is July 31st and reading from my last posts, you would have thought we would be all ready for our trip to Finland to the BRQ Vantaa Festival. Instead, Carl is back in Straub Hospital and possibly facing another surgery for an intestinal obstruction. And it’s back to the ice chip diet! Well, guess what Carl is watching on the hospital TV? Why, the Food Network, of course!
The lesson that we’ve learned here is: Don’t wash the car unless you want it to rain tomorrow! Don’t book another trip unless you want to cancel it!
We’ll keep you posted.