My heart is full of joy after tonight’s concert which was the culmination of a fifteen year journey that the community of Honolulu has taken with Joey Fala, a kid whose passion for the pipe organ led his fifth grade homeroom teacher to speak to me about it that many years ago.
“Kathy, you have to do something for Joey because he is absolutely driving his parents CRAZY asking for organ lessons!”
Cindy Scheinert, who was in tonight’s audience, reminded me that “every piece of homework somehow had the organ in it!” and put the two of us together to begin this journey.
It was a technically demanding concert which would challenge the most seasoned performer, and Joey absolutely rose to the occasion. He registered the organ so stylistically and brought out a myriad of colors in a program which included Elgar, Shearing, Bach, Franck, Rheinberger, Howells, Escaich
and Dupré. With every note, my heart rose higher and higher— he made such beautiful music, beautifully phrased, with “love” in every single note. I told him after the concert that he made everyone fall in love with organ music!
He recounted that day seven years ago when he was downstairs, right here in Central Union Church, nervously waiting to play his senior recital, that I told him “Joey, your playing makes people happy! Just go out and do it!”
I would like to share what Karl Bachman, our AGO Dean (American Guild of Organists) said at intermission.
[Aw, shucks, Karl! I didn’t do anything!]
Joey, we all went home happy!