Many music students love finding a way to challenge themselves and their growth as musicians. Versatility can be quite a useful skill when it comes to a stronger practice routine, as well as performance opportunities. In fact, those who become quite proficient at their skills may have the option of earning a little money on the side as they practice their art! While the pipe organ might not be the most popular of instruments, we strongly believe that it is the perfect choice for pianists looking to grow their abilities and find a new challenge to tackle. Here are the top reasons why:
Piano and Pipe Organ Techniques are Different
Some piano players believe that it will be easy to move from one type of keyboard to another, but we have found that this is not the case. Playing the piano proficiently is all about how you go into pressing on the keys, while the organ’s final sound relies mostly on how you release the keys. We do not recommend signing yourself up for an organ gig unless you have had plenty of practice! Using the same amount of weight on the keys is not going to produce desirable results. In fact, those who have learned the piano on a keyboard will have a small advantage, as these require a similar approach to pressing and releasing keys as an organ would.
Pedals, Keyboards, and Stops
If you have played the organ before, you know that the pedals, dual keyboard, and the stops can be overwhelming to a newcomer. Organists need to develop their own, new technique for the organ, as what they were likely trying on the piano won’t transfer over smoothly. Also, pianos only have three pedals at most, so using your feet to play may be new territory for you. It will be worth your while to find specific exercises to help your hands and feet learn to coordinate with one another. You will want to figure out the sound and function of each stop before you begin to play; that way, it may become easier to learn fluency in playing the pipe organ.
Whether you play piano in public spaces or offer piano lessons to less experienced musicians, you have a few extra ways to earn some side cash. However, being able to play the organ, even in a non-professional setting, can open up a multitude of music jobs. Many old churches have large, manual pipe organs. They usually have an organist, but you can always offer your services should their standard organist not be able to make it. Church organs are also not going to be your only source of opportunity, either. Many symphonic pieces and choral works also require an organist, so you may be able to assist with concerts.
If you are in need of a new pipe organ or even just organ tuning, give Whitesel Church Organs a call! We proudly serve a wide area of places, including Connecticut, New York, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and more. Contact our team today and let us know how we can help you with your organ needs.