Ebay Classic organs

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Organ Voluntary Length

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • jbird604
    replied
    As I mentioned above, I will have more freedom on the postlude now, with our revised Sunday morning schedule that makes the worship service the last event. No need to hurry up and get quiet so as not to disturb the Sunday School classes. I really NEED to rise to the challenge, get some more serious music, take it more seriously. And I should quit wringing my hands about communion, just work out some nice improvisation and do it, trusting that I'll be able to find a cadence when I need to.

    In my situation, the communion music only needs to occupy about two or three minutes most weeks, when we pass the trays, but can run five minutes or more on first Sundays when we walk up and do intinction. And I could make it a goal to play at least three minutes of postlude, which would be an improvement over the quick 1-minute wonders I've been getting by with!

    Leave a comment:


  • jbird604
    commented on 's reply
    I like your suggestion, regeron. Though I do enjoy improvising, sometimes I feel like I've run out of fresh ideas. This and that variation, minor re-harmonizing, making a solo out of a phrase or two, a bit of freedom with a melody here and there. Lots of good stuff to do, but I guess I need to spend more time PRACTICING my improvs and planning the variations I intend to use. But yes, having a hymn plus a corresponding arrangement both on the music desk might help me get my groove back. I'm sure I have numerous examples of that if I'll look through my books. Maybe if I do that a few times I'll get some fresh ideas that I can transfer to improvising.

  • myorgan
    commented on 's reply
    When I am playing, you do not speak until I finish the music.
    Have you ever had a pastor, get up, shuffle papers, and stand at the pulpit waiting for you to finish? It used to happen to me, and it was so rude!

    Michael

  • cham-ed
    replied
    We are blest with a number of people who will sit quietly for the postlude. Under that circumstance a longer postlude would be a treat for them, I know it is for me. A break from running back to "Real Life".
    A related comment, I go to a university church and many of the choir members are music majors. And usually we don't do a recessional procession. The students would jump up and run away, gabbing as they went. I have made the comment to them, if they are going to be professional musicians, they need to give professional courtesy to another musician. So, at least for a while, many would sit quietly through the postlude. The remainder would take the effort to very quietly leave. It doesn't seem their teachers have made the point about respecting other's performances.

    Leave a comment:


  • regeron
    commented on 's reply
    I'm not sure that learning to 'noodle' as you described it is a skill worth spending time on.  If you are not a fan of improvising during communion, how about having a hymn and a corresponding hymn arrangement (in the same key) both on the music rack.  Mark some spots in the arrangement where you could repeat or cut out.  Typically, these would be at cadence points.  As the moment for the verbal signal approaches, you can switch to the last line or two of the hymn.  That will usually allow you to end more quickly and easily in that situation.

  • regeron
    replied
    Diplomacy and behaving like an adult both require compromise, hopefully on both parts. It the other party won't compromise, we have to make the decision to work within their stated boundaries or find another job, especially if the other party is essentially your boss or the person who can hire/fire you.

    You'd be better off to work within the offertory length - challenge yourself to find or create music of the appropriate length. Then, in the places in the service where you have more freedom, take advantage of that.

    In too many instances, unless there are other factors at play, the person wearing the backward collar will win, no matter how valid your arguments.

    If you can prove that you can work with people, rather than against them, we can only hope that, over time, you will earn more freedom.

    Leave a comment:


  • jbird604
    replied
    Great advice, Larry! Communication between us musicians and the folks who do the speaking in a service is essential. MOST of the time we manage pretty well where I play, as I've been playing here over seven years and have come to know the routine well, and to know the quirks of each of the ministers and serving elders. But to be honest, I haven't ever actually talked to them much about our interaction within the service, beyond some general discussion in worship committee meetings.

    My hardest thing is trying to bring the communion "background music" to a proper repose at the exact moment the last elder places the tray back on the table. (I trust it's more than "back ground music"; I try to select an appropriate piece with the right atmosphere each week, hoping it will elicit reflection, not just cover the noise of people moving about.) Our practice is for all to "hold the cup" when the trays are passed, and the serving elder will give a verbal signal when everyone is served so that all may lift the cup at once. Some of the elders are very sensitive to the music and will wait a few seconds to let me finish. Others are not musically inclined, and may simply signal for the cup when the tray is set down, and I need to stop rather abruptly.

    Last Sunday I attended the final "contemporary" service in our church, as that service is being discontinued and we will have one combined service in the future. I took note at the contemporary service that the keyboardist simply "noodled" VERY softly during communion, using what sounded like an "electric piano" (Rhodes or Wurlitzer sound) turned down so low it was just barely audible. It set a very nice quiet mood for communion, and when it was time to stop, his music was so quiet he simply faded away quite quickly. It didn't really matter if he was finished with the "piece" or not, since it sounded like he was just playing little snippets from this or that chorus or hymn. I wondered to myself if I couldn't just do something like that and completely stop worrying about creating a neat little cadence when bringing the music to an end. I could even use an electric piano sound on the Allen Expander, I suppose.

    Sort of takes away the one time during the service when the organ really could "shine" as there are normally several minutes available to play, and I have the freedom to do whatever I like. Perhaps a mix of the two, playing a piece that lasts a couple minutes, then transitioning to soft noodling to the end.

    Leave a comment:


  • Larrytow
    replied
    I play for a good number of churches in my area, but not one regularly every week. Although I have gotten to know the preferences of the various pastors and priests at these churches, if a few weeks go by between playing a service at a certain one I have a quick conversation with whomever I am working with that day, before the service.

    That conversation goes pretty much like this : "I know when to play all the various pieces of music required for the service, so lets make a plan so we are both on the same page. When you are speaking, I am not playing; When I am playing, you do not speak until I finish the music. I watch you, and and you can trust me to end the piece shorty after I see you are ready to continue. It is much more elegant and classy to end a piece properly ( even if in the middle of it, a nice end point is quite possible ), than to merely stop wherever I happen to be."

    I have never had a minister have any problem with that arrangement.

    The Offertory is the main issue, but every now and then you will encounter a minister that starts the welcome spiel during the prelude music. That is rather annoying to say the least. I carry a battery operated clock in my music bag, and sync it with the clock the minister uses - so I do know when I need to stop playing.

    Although church services are not "performances" like a stage show, some of the same sort of elements of doing a decent production obviously apply.


    Leave a comment:


  • regeron
    commented on 's reply
    In your case, the Offertory sounds like the perfect opportunity to improvise, either freely or based on one of the service hymns. Improvising for a minute is not that hard. Improvising for a minute on a weekly basis will challenge you to learn some simple formulas and practice them. You'll need more than one formula or everyone will get bored of it soon enough. You'll learn about anticipating the priest's movements as the preparation of the table nears completion. There are lots of short keyboard pieces that you can use as inspiration and it may even serve as a stepping stone to longer improvisations.

  • sam99
    replied
    Oh yes, I know, I wouldn't actually do that with the offertories haha.

    Leave a comment:


  • jbird604
    replied
    Not usually a good idea to ignore the wishes of the priest or minister in any service, so I wouldn't recommend trying to extend any of the music within the service proper. But if you have the flexibility to do so, play longer preludes and postludes, even if you don't think anyone is paying attention. it will be good experience for you, and you might even win some folks over to the idea that the organ music is worthy of their extended attention!

    Leave a comment:


  • sam99
    replied
    I talked to her about it, still wants it to end soon. I may just have to slowly increase the length of them over the course of several months, or play longer preludes ha!
    Thanks for the encouragement Michael! I’ve definitely honed in my skills since I took on this church (I’ve learned a lot on the fly and by just doing)

    Leave a comment:


  • myorgan
    replied
    Originally posted by sam99 View Post
    I'm hoping to be able to play in Methodist or Baptist churches. I'm in Georgia currently. Right now I play for a tiny Episcopal church (no choir, no frills) and they aren't picky about the things that I play. Generally they want very short pieces (so for example the offertory must end as soon as the collection and preparation of the table is over, which takes maybe a minute).
    Sam99,

    In that case, I'd suggest having a conversation with the Episcopal priest to suggest you be able to complete a piece during the offertory. After all, it's one time the congregation actually listens to your playing and generally comes just before the sermon/homily, so it would be nice if you could complete the piece.

    Hopefully, you're able to play for a church of your choice soon, but for now (if you're just learning), you'll probably have to accept what you can get until your skills are honed. No time you spend playing for a church is wasted, you will learn valuable skills which will serve you well in the years to come.

    Michael

    Leave a comment:


  • samibe
    replied
    I plan on playing prelude for 10 minutes before the meeting starts and postlude for 5 minutes after the meeting ends. Before I start prelude I spend several minutes running through hymn intros and trying any last minute registration changes. Since the organ at church has a blind capture system, I need some time to set it up just before the meeting too (at least if I'm planning on using it). The last thing I do before starting prelude is run through a more interesting piece (usually classical but sometimes a hymn arrangement) as something fun for me and the people who got there early.
    I have a handful of disparate pieces that I play through sometimes for prelude as well as some organ chains books that I usually play out of. The books have several sight-readable hymn arrangements that are all about a minute long with transitions between each song.
    Last edited by samibe; 02-23-2019, 08:28 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • sam99
    replied
    I'm hoping to be able to play in Methodist or Baptist churches. I'm in Georgia currently. Right now I play for a tiny Episcopal church (no choir, no frills) and they aren't picky about the things that I play. Generally they want very short pieces (so for example the offertory must end as soon as the collection and preparation of the table is over, which takes maybe a minute). I grew up in a small church without an organ, but I'd like to return to a Methodist/Baptist/Presbyterian type church that has more familiar music eventually. I had assumed 3-4 minutes for pieces in those type churches.
    Last edited by sam99; 02-23-2019, 06:08 PM.

    Leave a comment:

Working...
X