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Upcoming Performances

February 11
Inaugural recitalist, Casavant organ, Forest Lake Presbyterian Church, Columbia, S.C.

March 9, 2018, 12:15 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, National City Christian Church, Washington, D.C.

March 11, 2018
Guest recitalist, Waldensian Presbyterian Church, Valdese, N.C.

May 13, 2018, 5:00 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, First Presbyterian Church, Wilmington, N.C.

September 23, 4:00 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, Schantz organ 40th anniversary, Culpeper Baptist Church, Culpeper, Va.

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Monday
Oct242011

Recruiting, Part 4: The Care and Feeding of an Organ Console

Dear Organist,

This is your console speaking. I am the coolest thing many young people have ever seen, and I am one of the most respectable things grownups will ever see or use. I am the ultimate seducer for prospective organists. I am your faithful servant, but I belong to your congregation. I must no longer look like your garage or attic. Therefore, I have formulated the following new rules for you:

Keep your hands clean. Have your serviceman do the same.

No hand lotion.

No street shoes nor bare feet. Play in organ shoes or socks/stockings.

No dangly bracelets, necklaces, and big rings. My keys are chipped.

No long fingernails. My keys are dug out.

Place nothing on my bench except your fully clothed hiney. And watch the jeans rivets, cellphones, and other attachments on your person.

Stop pounding my pedals as if you were squashing cockroaches.

Stop pounding my manuals as if you had to overcome 50 feet of tracker travel with five manuals coupled together.

Be kinder to my drawknobs. They are not ventilation knobs on a vintage Ford LTD.

Never, ever, stand on my pedals. Something just might break or loosen, and it is otherwise simply a bad example for others.

Place a rug next to me. Wipe your shoes on it.

My cabinet top may look suspiciously like a table, but it is not. Likewise my bench and the area below my stop jambs. I am tired of being a repository for key rings, old bulletins, paper clips, highlight markers, ink pens, ashtrays(!), soda cans, tissues, dead watches, coffee cups, jewelry, Post-Its, scotch tape, masking tape, duct tape, permanent markers, and eraser crumbs. I am currently sporting scratches, soda can rings, coffee cup rings, black marks from rubber-soled shoes, sticky finger residue, and cigarette burn marks(!). Both I and my piano friend over there are routinely used for desks, filing cabinets, conductor music stands, drink coasters, flower vases, and lost-and-found centers. Correction of all this must start with you. And when you must ask someone to follow suit, you could try the direct approach, such as, “Please don’t put that there.” That won’t work for long, so try these ‘pickup lines’ next: “My, but you have expensive taste in tables,” and, “You’re doing something to my instrument that you probably don’t want me doing to yours.”

Pick up all those pencils and paper clips from underneath my pedalboard. Matter of fact, remove my pedalboard periodically and vacuum the entire area.

Remove the masking tape from my dead drawknobs. Remove the Doxology and Gloria Patri that have been taped to my music rack. The last fellow who played on me from memory was distracted by those.

Be in attendance every time I am moved around.

Keep your housekeeping crew away. The last time they were here, they swiped me with that same oily rag with which they had just finished polishing the pulpit and pews. My keys were slimy and wet with pools of standing furniture polish. They also sprayed my plexiglass music rack with window cleaner, which also sprayed the woodwork and left spots.

The better I look, the more respect I get. And the more respect I get, the more attractive I become to others.

Sincerely,

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