Dr. Jeannine Jordan, Concert Organist

Archive for February, 2011

Bach and Sons – a Unique Organ and Media Event

Bach and Sons CD by Jeannine Jordan, concert organist

Is visiting Germany on your to-do list? Are you a lover of great music? Do you enjoy a good story? Have you ever wanted to see an organist’s hands and feet fly over the keyboard? If you answered “yes” to any or all of these questions, you will want to attend the music and multimedia performance, “Bach and Sons” when it comes to a city near you.  Organist Dr. Jeannine Jordan in collaboration with her media artist husband, David, take you on a journey through time to the 18th century Germany of the Johann Sebastian Bach family.

The music Dr. Jordan plays is simply the greatest and most-loved organ music of all time: JS Bach’s Toccata in d minor, Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring, Air on a G String, and more. Not only will you hear this incredible music, but you will also see Dr. Jordan playing the music. With live images projected on a large screen from multiple cameras on Dr. Jordan’s hands and feet, you will experience how she creates the music. Every audience member now has a front row seat and is a part of the “Bach and Sons” experience.

The stories of Bach’s life including the incident where he shredded a bassoonist’s clothes with his sword; the time he was jailed by a jealous prince; the birth of his twenty children; his arguments with church authorities; and his prowess in the German music world, are all lovingly told by the women who were important in his life.

The visuals accompanying the great music and the intriguing anecdotes take you to 18th century Germany: the countryside of Saxony, the Court of Dresden, the great organ of Naumburg, and St. Thomas Church in Leipzig all take center stage. Great music, intriguing stories, stunning visuals and live camera feeds make “Bach and Sons” a must see and must experience event.

If you live in Oregon, you have two opportunities in the coming weeks to experience the “Bach and Sons” organ and multi-media event presented by Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist with David Jordan, visual artist.

The first is on Saturday, March 12, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. at the Nestucca Valley Presbyterian Church, 35305 Brooten Road, Pacific City, Oregon.

The second “Bach and Sons” takes place at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Salem, Oregon (1444 Liberty Street) immediately following the 4:00 p.m. Evensong service.

Visit www.promotionmusic.org for more information on the “Bach and Sons” event or contact  jeannine@promotionmusic.org or 541-905-0108.  Jeannine Jordan, concert organist.

Successful and Creative Organ Practice Ideas

Nine Ways to Ensure Successful Organ Practice

“There are not enough hours in the day.  If I only had at least four hours a day to practice the organ I would make much better progress.  I practice my organ repertoire, but it seems like I am getting nowhere.”  These are some of the comments I hear from my organ students regarding practice.

Practice can be successful if one follows a few ideas for the creative and wise use of the practice time available.

  • Plan a specific time to practice each day and stick to it. We all function better at different times during the day. Try out a few different practice times. Do you focus better in the morning or later in the day? Does family or work dictate a practice time? Once you have discovered a time that works in your schedule and with your mindset, put that time on your daily calendar.
  • Set an overall goal for each practice session and write it down in a notebook! A practice session goal might be to:
    • Work on the cadences in one piece and opening phrases in another
    • Practice separate parts in one piece and put all parts together in a second
    • Work on a difficult three measure phrase with the metronome and play a full page of another piece with the metronome
    • Practice hymns with the pedal and left hand only and reward yourself by playing a favorite hymn with all parts.
  • Place sticky notes on your music to track progress. List the date a piece was begun, dates practiced, completion goal, tempo goals with metronome markings defined and met, final tempo goals, other challenges to address. A visible reminder on your music helps you track your goals, challenges and successes.
  • Write down questions/challenges/successes during your week of practice in your practice notebook to share with not only me, but also with a colleague or friend.
  • Work diligently with the metronome. This is possibly the most difficult task for an organist, but it shortens the learning time  by helping maintain a steady tempo from the first practice sessions.
  • Focus and never allow mistakes. Thinking you will easily play through a difficult passage the “next time” is one of the biggest mistakes. Mistakes made repeatedly while waiting for that “next time” take hours of practice to correct.
  • Play the best you can each time you play. Do not settle for mediocre playing.
  • Play a “fun” or reward piece at the end of the practice session. After working toward your practice session goal, challenging yourself to play cleanly and well, play something you love and know well to end your practice and work session. You deserve it.
  • Enjoy yourself! After all, we play the most magnificent instrument ever built!  The organ!  Who knows you might just be the world’s next famous concert organist.

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