Ellacombe part 2

Well, I played my Prelude on Ellacombe (for organ) this morning. I thought it went well. It was particularly gratifying that I made different (relatively small) mistakes each time (we have two morning church services). As a performer I find that I often have words with my composer self. What was I thinking about, writing two lines in the pedal? Particularly when skips of a 4th or 5th are constantly required?

Between the intricate pedal work of the opening and closing sections and the articulation of the manual voices (lots of staccato–contrary to the principle of legato playing that organists first learn) I had a nervous week or so as I became familiar with the piece. It only took about 6 hours of actual rehearsal; I knew yesterday that I was ready when I didn’t use the other two hours I had planned (freeing me to work on other stuff).

I didn’t have time to check if an adequate recording was made, since I left just as the final notes of the postlude were dying away to head to the Giants/A’s game in Oakland. I’d expected something like a Concerto Grosso, with lots of give and take, and a certain amount of antiphonal play. It was more of a Tuba concerto, with the Giants’ collective head stuck in the bell of the Tuba–they didn’t even make an effective mute as the A’s took the day 16-zip.

While my morning performance wasn’t a shutout, I felt almost as good about my piece as the A’s did about the game. If I can’t post a recording from the service, I’ll make one soon and provide a link under Recent Work on the sidebar.

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