How much time do you spend taking action as opposed to reaction in organ playing? This question can also be put this way: How often do you work towards your own goals as opposed to the goals of others?
How often do you give yourself the freedom of making a choice to play what you want as opposed to letting others decide it for you?
Here's the thing - we sure need to think a little about others when we play organ. We need to take into consideration our employer, our congregation, our listeners. But we also need to find some time in our practice when we are free to experiment, to ponder, to do research, to sight-read, to improvise something seemingly entirely useless, or similarly waste time.
Because you know what? If you only play what's required of you, you will miss an opportunity to be unique and remarkable, you will miss an opportunity to find your edge. You will miss an opportunity to matter.
This will make you into an average organist. An average organist who is easily replaceable with the one who's just a little cheaper and faster than you.
And in today's economy it turns out not a very productive strategy.
Instead, you should search for things that you hold dear, the things that are exciting to you alone, the things that only you can provide, the things which you would be missed for if you were gone.
The weirder the better.
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Drs. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
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