By Vidas Pinkevicius (get free updates of new posts here)
Eddie writes that he wonders whether the indication to play the left hand staccato chords an octave higher in the last page of Widor's Toccata (therefore, above the right hand) might have been an error on behalf of the publisher.
He also asks when this Toccata is played an octave lower to avoid screaming mixtures and a lack of adequate foundation stops would the pedals also need adjustment?
Eddie points out that one must be careful not to let the staccato sound as a firing machine gun; one could rather consider the staccato-prescription as 'with leggiero touch' (like Boëlmann prescribes in his Toccata from Suite Gothique).
In my opinion, the hand crossings appear to be required due to the sounds necessary in high register. If you have trouble crossing the hands, you can flip them - at that place play the middle stave with the right hand and the upper stave - with the left hand (just as Eddie suggests).
If you choose to play the entire toccata one octave lower, the pedal part should remain where it's written. Make sure you don't use 16' stops in the manuals then.
I also agree about the similarity of the "leggiero" touch of the sixteenths with the Boellmann's toccata.
Keep up your practice in a super slow tempo. The faster you want your end result to be, the slower you should practice for a while.
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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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Don't have an organ at home?
Download paper manuals and pedals, print them out, cut the white spaces, tape the sheets together and you'll be ready to practice anywhere where is a desk and floor. Make sure you have a higher chair.