Sunday, February 8, 2009

Organ Encounters

Those of you know know me in RL know that I've been honing my creative writing skills, thanks to being involved with the Harry Potter FanFiction fandom. For the past three weeks, my Saturday evenings have been taken up by the ladies in Petulant Poetess Chat Room. Person A issues a prompt to Person B. Person B answers the prompt with a ficlet of no longer than 1000 words. The results are then posted to The Petulant Poetess under the category Potter Place Fun.

Karelia issued the following prompt to me: Lucius visits a cathedral and is enchanted by the sound of an organ playing. I answered with a ficlet called Resonance, where Severus Snape takes Lucius Malfoy to Église Saint-Sulpice to listen to Daniel Roth (well, it's implied it is Mr Roth) play Messiaen's final Toccata from La Nativité, Dieu Parmi Nous on the famous Cavaillé-Coll organ.

This morning, I received a lovely email from one of the readers. She is the mother of an aspiring organist. Her teen-aged son is also legally blind. She worries that her son may have a difficult time breaking through the 'glass ceiling' of others' prejudice that a blind musician cannot be a virtuoso, but takes heart in the fact that there are some famous blind organists such as Jean Langlais and Louis Vierne. Naturally, my response was to recommend she contact her local chapter of the American Guild of Organists. (What kind of a Chapter Officer would I be if I were not to recommend the AGO to anyone who is interested in the organ and organ music? ;-) )

Also too, whilst in the chat room, there was much squee going on when the ladies realised I was subjecting Malfoy to Messiaen. To be honest, I had no idea Messiaen had quite a following. It was a nice feeling. :)

I'd say interest in the organ is alive and well. Well, I suppose we just have to lead people to it, and the attraction to the King of Instruments will (hopefully) take care of itself.

Am I being naively optimistic here? Frankly speaking, I certainly hope not. (At least, not being naive is concerned.) I'd like to think that there will be more young people wanting to take up the organ so that when the current generation of organists leave us, there will be a new generation of organists waiting in the wings.

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