Dr. Jeannine Jordan, Concert Organist

Archive for June, 2011

Creative Organ and Media Events–Getting out of the “Potted-Palm Mode”

“Creativity is the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules or patterns, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, and interpretations.  Creativity is the bringing into being of something which did not exist before, either as a product, a process or a thought.”

In the world of classical music and more specifically, the world of the classical organ performance, presenting an engaging and creative program can be a challenge.  We organists play stationary instruments, which often are hidden from the view of the audience.  We often rely solely on the sound of the organ and a few written or verbal program notes to capture the imagination and attention of the audience.  As audience numbers dwindle for organ concerts, it is obvious organists and concert sponsors need to creatively approach these challenges.

Strongly encouraging performing organists and those sponsoring organ concerts to “get out of the potted-palm mode”, Eileen Guenther, President of the American Guild of Organists, eloquently expressed the urgent need and for concerts designed to engage audiences and make friends for the organ.  (The American Organist, May 2010).

My husband, David Jordan, an avid explorer and developer of 21st-century media art, and I have taken Ms. Guenther’s words to heart.  We have created two organ and media events, Bach and Sons and From Sea to Shining Sea, which are designed to delight the music-lover, educator, historian and organist of any age and make friends for the organ worldwide.

A Journey Through Time — From Sea to Shining Sea

A Journey Through Time

From Sea to Shining Searecalls the organ’s past in the U.S.’

Time travel may not be possible, but don’t tell that to organist Dr. Jeannine Jordan. Jordan takes music lov­ers on a journey through 200 years of organ history in a music and multimedia perfor­mance. “It’s a complete package of the lives of colonists and lives of musicians and how they interacted.”

Using music, anecdotes and images, Jordan and her media artist husband David Jordan tell the story of the beginnings of organs in the colonies and its progress and impact through the late 1800.  After extensive research into the lives of early American organists (1700-1850) in five select Ameri­can cities, Jordan discovered a wealth of information about the musicians, their instruments and the music those organists played. The historically accurate visual images David Jordan presents in the program reinforce the story graphically.

Original Church of 1703_jpgThe history lesson gets set into motion with a quoted diary entry from 1703 describing the playing of a voluntary on the organ in the gallery, by Jonas, the or­ganist. Found in a diary from a member of the Mystics of Wissahickon who worshiped in Philadelphia, it is the first documented evidence in the country of an organ­ist, an organ and organ music.

The program continues by giving a persona to the organists, visuals of places, and life to history in the making. Attendees will see and hear important histori­cal events such as the Battle of Trenton and the long, hard road of bringing the organ around Cape Horn to San Francisco and making that final trip to Oregon via oxcart.

“You’ll hear how the organ came across the Appa­lachian Mountains and ended up in Indian territory,” said Jordan. “You’ll see what it was like for them to hear an organ for the first time. It’s a beautiful story on how the two cultures came together.”

Images help place the listener in cities, churches and homes, and the music played brings the listener closer to the artistic life of the colonies and fledgling United States.  “From Sea to Shining Sea” –a one-of-a-kind event with media and great music for the organ.

Creativity in programming = Bach and Sons, and organ and media event

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 of Bach & Sonsat a venue near you.

Bach and Sons with Dr. Jeannine Jordan Concert Organist

Bach and Sons organ and media event with Dr. Jeannine Jordan, concert organist

Bach and Sons is an organ and media concert performed by Dr. Jeannine Jordan, concert organist and David Jordan, media artist.  The concert introduces the audience to the organ music of Johann Sebastian Bach as it evolved through his life and to the music of his sons, lesser known composers but still important in their own right.

The visual media help bring to life the people and the places that were so important in the life of the Bach family.  As a unique touch, the program is narrated by women who were important in the lives of these great composers.

Bach and Sons

    • presents new insights into the life of Johann Sebastian Bach and his family through the eyes of those who were closest to him
    • is not a dictionary interpretation of the person behind the music but an insight into the human being and what he went through to create the music he made.
    • is more than an organ concert as you travel with Bach and his sons through the trials and tribulations of the challenging life they shared
    • is a story that gets more dramatic throughout the years in the Bach family.  Come, see, and hear what made Johann Sebastian Bach the phenomenon that he was and still is.
    • feels like you are participating in the places and times that influenced these incredible musicians.
    • tells the stories and showcases the organ music against a continuously changing backdrop of creative visuals by David Jordan
    • gives each audience member a front row seat through the use of live cameras projecting Dr. Jordan’s playing to a large screen.  You are now part of the concert, joining forces with the organist as her feet dance and race over the pedals, her hands exact singing notes from the keys and pull stops creating the myriad of sensations from the voices of the organ.is a must see, actually, a must experience organ and media event

BACH AND SONS presented by David Jordan, media artist and Jeannine Jordan, concert organist


Bach and Sons with David and Jeannine Jordan

Bach and Sons, organ and media event with Dr. Jeannine Jordan, concert organist


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