Today's guests are Lydia Vroegindeweij from the Netherlands, the Dutch organist and founder of OrgelKids and Erin Scheessele from the United States who helps bringing OrgelKids to America with OrgelKids USA.
Orgelkids is an educational pipe organ curriculum and kit dreamed up by Dutch organist Lydia Vroegindeweij. Lydia enlisted the help of organ builder Wim Janssen to build the first and only two Orgelkids kits in existence.
With Orgelkids, young children are empowered to assemble a working two rank, 2-octave pipe organ in under an hour.
Orgelkids can be deployed to schools, music festivals, Maker Faires, museums, bringing the King of Instruments to children. See below for how Orgelkids complements AGO’s outreach programs.
Erin's son Peter is 7 years old and he loves pipe organs. He’s an active member of the Eugene Chapter of the American Guild of Organists (AGO).
Peter likes to play pipe organs, but he sure would like to be able to build pipe organs, too. A Google search for “pipe organ kit” led Peter to Orgelkids.
Peter wrote to Lydia Vroegindeweij, founder of Orgelkids in the Netherlands, asking if she’d be willing to share her schematics for building a kit and for them to bring Orgelkids to the USA. Lydia’s prompt reply was an enthusiastic “Ja!” and she expressed joy that her idea of how to bring the pipe organ to children could grow and reach a wider audience.
Peter is an enthusiastic ambassador for the organ, and operated a lemonade stand in 2014 benefiting the restoration of a local pipe organ. As he is still too young for most of AGO’s outreach programming, Peter is eager to bring Orgelkids to his peers.
In this conversation we talk about this beautiful idea to bring the pipe organ closer to children.
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