Many organists tell me that mistakes can be very difficult to fix in organ playing. If they fail to correct the mistake or can't play the piece fluently and without interruptions, they feel like they have to give up practicing organ and do something else. In this article, I will share 6 tips with you of how I overcome frustration when playing the organ.
When playing the organ, I make mistakes, too and I get frustrated, of course. But for me it is inspiring to know that many other famous organists have taken the same path and had similar problems I have.
In fact, the great Bach himself was known to have superb sight-reading skills. He had a habit of playing some unfamiliar pieces on the harpsichord while visiting with his friends. Usually he could sight-read them very well on the first try.
But one time, as he was playing one particular work on the harpsichord, he got stuck at one spot. He stopped, went back a few lines, played it again, and got stuck at the same spot for the second time. Surprised, he tried again the same thing but made a mistake in the same place for the third time. Then he said, "No, it is not possible to play everything."
Isn't this an encouraging thought? To think that the genius who was said to be able to play anything written on the music score by his contemporaries, himself admitted the limitations of human nature.
So what does it mean for you? You see, it's OK to make mistakes. When you try to correct them and it doesn't help, it doesn't necessarily mean you should give up your organ playing because of this.
Have you taken note of how many times do you usually try to correct the mistake before you give up? Thomas Edison, the inventor of light bulb, was known to have 10000 failed attempts in this project but he didn't give up. And of course, organ playing is a lot easier than inventing a light bulb. You will not need so many repetitions.
You just have to approach this problem from a different angle and perspective. This will help you to stay positive. Here are some things that are worth remembering:
1. Try to remember your goal. It could be both short-term and long-term goal in organ playing.
2. Create a daily practice schedule. This schedule or plan will help you to know the steps necessary to achieve your goal.
3. When you practice, always take a slow tempo. Practicing very slowly helps to avoid mistakes.
4. Choose pieces of your technical level. Many people take compositions that are too difficult for them at the moment. Save them for the future.
5. Learn the piece in separate voices and voice combinations. This is especially helpful for playing polyphonic music, such as fugues.
6. Master short fragments first and later combine them together. This technique helps to correct mistakes very quickly.
Try these 6 tips today in your organ practice and you will be surprised how much easier is to stay positive and not to give up your organ playing.
By the way, do you want to learn to play the King of Instruments - the pipe
organ? If so, download my FREE video guide: "How to Master Any Organ
Composition" in which I will show you my EXACT steps, techniques, and methods that I use to practice, learn and master any piece of organ music.
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Drs. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
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.