A month ago I shared the first guest lesson by Carol Dean, on how to register the organ for choir accompaniment. Today I'll share the second lesson, which shows how to transcribe piano music for the organ.
If you have ever tried to play a piano accompaniment on the organ, you've probably realized that changes need to be made. Here, Carol Dean shares some ways to do this.
Octaves often become single notes, in both the treble and bass clefs. If needed, add higher-pitched stops for additional brilliance in manuals. In the pedals, using 16' and 8' stops automatically gives bass octave doubling.
In general, you will play the upper notes of bass octaves and the lower notes of treble octaves.
Pedals do not always have to be used. If a bass line is simple and well defined, it may be played in its entirety.
Play a very rapid bass line on the manuals with the 16' pedal only on the accented beat.
Thin out the chord texture by putting chords in "open" position and getting rid of "doublings." Remember that when using 4' and 2' stops, doublings occur automatically.
A compromise must be obtained between too much repetition and too much tying. Sustained block chords would rob a piece of its inherent motion, but repeating every note would result in too choppy an effect.
Arpeggios are especially problematic when transcribed for the organ.
Use a louder registration for right hand than left hand:
For a lighter sound:
Although rare, tremolos do occur occasionally. Sustain the outer voices, and let the inner voices do the repercussing.
Thank you again, Carol, for a wonderful lesson!
Using the choir piece you selected in lesson 19, modify it as outlined in this lesson for the organ, then begin practicing it, making additional modifications as necessary.
Continue working on previous homework assignments that haven't been mastered, and continue to practice the hymns and prelude pieces that you have learned in the past, so that you don't lose what you've gained.
In the Church, many treat the organ and piano as the same instrument. In reality they differ greatly, as this blog constantly strives to teach. The tools taught in this lesson will help you play pieces that were written for the piano effectively on the organ.
Continue on to lesson 21.