Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas, pipe organ

One of the many things I'm grateful for in my work is that I get practice time on an organ. Compared to my piano training, I have had only a little bit of instruction and practice on the organ. Till recently playing the organ just felt like operating a big machine. The organ and I are now starting to understand one another a bit better, I think.

And I'm starting to discover some very exciting new repertoire -- and new composers. One drawback of playing the piano, a very popular instrument with lots of solo repertoire, is that sometimes pianists don't know very much about composers who did not write lots of piano pieces. Occasionally my violinist wife surprises me with names of composers I've never heard of, but who turn out to be quite important composers of string literature. (Usually they are Italian.) Thanks to the organ, I am now becoming more familiar with people like Franck, Widor and Buxtehude. They're wonderful. Thanks, pipe organ! Merry Christmas to you too.

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