Ever wondered how to turn those nice hymn tunes into improvisations which would greatly enhance your church service playing? They can also develop your creativity and advance your improvisational skills.
I use a very simple system to learning to improvise hymn or choral preludes. It's very similar to studying counterpoint. Here it is:
1. Note against note for 2 voices
2. 2 notes against one for 2 voices
3. 3 notes against one for 2 voices
4. 4 notes against one for 2 voices
5. Mixed counterpoint for 2 voices
1. Note against note for 3 voices
2. 2 notes against one for 3 voices
3. 3 notes against one for 3 voices
4. 4 notes against one for 3 voices
5. Mixed counterpoint for 3 voices
1. Note against note for 4 voices
2. 2 notes against one for 4 voices
3. 3 notes against one for 4 voices
4. 4 notes against one for 4 voices
5. Mixed counterpoint for 4 voices
Here is what I mean by 1, 2, 3 or 4 notes against 1:
That's a piece for two voicesof but while one voice has 1 note, another has 1 or more at the same time. In other words, while one voice moves in quarter notes, another moves in quarter notes, eighth notes, eighth note triplets or sixteenth notes. This can be in two part prelude (what I call a basic level), three part prelude (intermediate level) or four part prelude (advanced level).
What is mixed counterpoint?
While one voice moves in quarter notes, another voice - is completely free and can move in any rhythm (a combination of quarter notes, triplets, sixteenths or even syncopations).
Try this system with any hymn or choral tune that you want. Spend some time on each step with a number of hymns and remember to put a tune in any voice.
To help you supercharge your studies in hymn improvisation, I have created a 16 week training program Organ Hymn Improvisation Level 1 which teaches to improvise hymn or choral preludes on any tune on a basic level.
By the way, do you want to learn my special powerful techniques which help me to master any piece of organ music up to 10 times faster? If so, download my organ practice guide "How to Master Any Organ Composition".
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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.