It’s been three days since Joey Fala’s triumphant concert last Sunday, and people are still commenting and raving about his performance to me.
Last Friday, Karl Bachman, the Dean of the local Hawaii Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, arranged for Joey to be interviewed by Gene Schiller of Hawaii Public Radio.
Joey certainly kept his cool, in spite of being asked some very challenging questions!
Click this link to go to the Hawaii Public Radio website and hear the interview.
As you will see, they used the photo of Joey taken seven years ago at the Central Union console just before his senior recital in high school.
Today I had a lesson with Steven Severin, organist of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, who turned pages for Joey in Sunday’s concert. Being up close, he marveled at the large size of Joey’s hands, which give him a great advantage in playing the organ, especially in playing the works of Franck, which have sometime call for stretches of a tenth (an octave and a third).
I then pulled out a picture of Joey taken shortly after he finished sixth grade. Even then, you can see that he had wonderfully long fingers at a young age! What was also fun was that this weekend, in cleaning out a box of miscellaneous papers, I found the Midsummer Night’s Organ Concert program dated Sunday, July 18, 2004, Joey’s first public concert appearance!
Here’s Joey’s bio from that time: Joey began piano at age five with Toni Leong and has continued piano study with Jill Fong since he was six. He has been an organ student of Katherine Crosier since May 2003 and a recipient of an AGO Scholarship in 2003 and again in 2004. Joey just completed the sixth grade at Iolani School and looks forward to seventh grade in the Fall.
Look at the length of his fingers, compared to mine—and this was in the sixth grade! No wonder he’s such a marvel at the organ.