Dr. Jeannine Jordan, Concert Organist

Archive for October, 2018

Hymn-based organ repertoire

Excerpted from the Jordan Organ Studio October 2018 Newsletter.

Most all of us are currently playing some sort of hymn-based repertoire either for use in a church service, for the upcoming recital, or simply for pleasure.

Question: Do you know when the hymntune your piece is based on was originally composed? Do you know the text of the hymn? Have you discovered something interesting about the composer of your piece? Hmmm…a little research makes music come alive. I simply love learning something new about repertoire — and each of you certainly helps me do that on a weekly basis!

My new lesson week began yesterday afternoon with three inspirational lessons following our worship service. All three were filled with hymn based repertoire. My eight-year-old’s lesson (following a service where she played three hymn variations for the prelude) included new hymn based repertoire in addition to her favorite trumpet tunes; my newest student – a talented 13-year-old with the goal to become a church organist, added two more hymns to her “completed hymn list” and prepared a Bach Prelude for an upcoming church service; and Walter and I played hymns from the 1920 Protestant Episcopal hymnal and Bach’s Orgelbuchlein for two lovely hours. Just like the lessons earlier in the week, hymnody played a huge role in each of their lessons.

I simply love the fact that in any given week, with you my wonderful students, I have the opportunity to explore hymns from a myriad of denominations, to learn new hymns (I think Walter got the award for adding the most hymns to my hymn knowledge base this week — who knew the Episcopalians of 1920 had so many different hymns), to see favorite tunes with different texts, to hear creative settings of these amazing pieces, and to simply hear some of my favorite pieces of music.

It’s a really great life being your teacher! I am so blessed!
___________________________________________________

Interested in organ lessons for yourself, your child, or your grandchild?  Dr. Jeannine Jordan loves to teach and has studios in Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Forest Grove, Oregon.  You may reach her at jeannine@promotionmusic.org.  Fulfill a dream…start organ lessons today.

The Tie That Binds

Question: What is the tie that binds all of us (the cohort of the Jordan Organ Studio) together?

Answer: As I do weekly, Friday morning I was reviewing my notes and thoughts from the lessons I had taught in the past week, when it occurred to me that most all of the lessons have a common thread running through them. That thread is hymnody.

Some of us, by the nature of our church positions, practice and work on hymns to be sung weekly by our congregations. Those Sundays just keep coming around with hymns galore! For all of us who are church musicians, hymns are and should be a part of every practice session and lesson. We need to remember that the hymns are THE MOST IMPORTANT pieces of music we will play for our congregations!

Question: How is your hymn playing? Does your congregation sing well? Are you an excellent leader? Is your playing precise and of good tempo? Are you creative with your introductions? Do you use alternative harmonizations to suit the text or ethnicity of the hymntune? Hmmm….so many questions to ponder.
___________________________________________________________

Interested in organ lessons for yourself, your child, or your grandchild?  Dr. Jeannine Jordan loves to teach and has studios in Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Forest Grove, Oregon.  You may reach her at jeannine@promotionmusic.org.  Fulfill a dream…start organ lessons today.

What does the path to organ lessons look like?

Question asked by a precocious six-year-old of her mother: “What does the path to organ lessons look like?”
Answer: “Let’s ask Jeannine and find out.”

The rest is history as they say.  That six-year-old is now eight going on nine and is becoming an organist.  She has been my student for the past two years and is developing her skills as an organist through practice and by watching and listening.  This little girl quickly became interested in not only playing the organ but assisting me in worship.  In fact, the first service where she robed and assumed the Assistant to the Organist role was the Easter Vigil service of 2017.  Now that, folks, is not only a complicated and busy service for an organist but is also rather long.  It could have been daunting, but it was a great experience for both of us.

She has continued to assist me and has also started playing in the service as well.  And what a joy it is!  As the months progress, you’ll continue to hear her music as part of the prelude, communion music, or as the postlude.

A second child of 13-years of age told her mother it was a shame that their church had gotten rid of their organ.  She asked her mother if she could learn to play the organ, so their church could once again sing the great hymns with the organ.  That child has also become one of my students.  She lives across the backfield from our church so is part of our church neighborhood.  Thanks to the generosity of our church, St. Bede of Forest Grove, Oregon, she is able to practice at our church while she works to become an organist for her church, the Romanian Baptist Church of Beaverton, Oregon.

In the coming months, you’ll be able to meet this teenager and other members of her family as she will be a second Assistant to the Organist.  She will assist for the first time on October 14th and play the postlude that Sunday as well.

How exciting it is to help a child realize a dream.  How exciting it is to not only have the opportunity to enrich my life by teaching these extremely talented girls, but also to have the opportunity to mentor new organists for our church from within our community and neighborhood.

SOLI DEO GLORIA
_________________________________________________

Interested in organ lessons for yourself, your child, or your grandchild?  Dr. Jeannine Jordan loves to teach and has studios in Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Forest Grove, Oregon.  You may reach her at jeannine@promotionmusic.org.  Fulfill a dream…start organ lessons today.

Will you start a concert series?

Excerpted from the Guest Artist Interview of the October 2018 Pro-Motion Music e-newsletter.

Jeannine: For those who may want to start a concert series at their church, what advice would you give?

Mr. Largent: If you have an instrument that has a beautiful sound and you feel it should be shared….do it!  Be sure you have enough energy…it takes a lot of energy to host a concert.  You will need to be the main host for your artists.  Don’t assume that at the door donations or free will offerings will cover the costs of the program. You have to believe in the art form enough to ask people to support it financially.  In general, if it is free, people will feel it is not of value.  Make sure the leadership of your church is behind a series and will attend the concerts.  We’ve kept ours on Friday evenings because Friday and Saturday is when art events happen.  Saturday night doesn’t work for a church because you have to get everything ready for Sunday worship…..and who will clean the bathrooms and Sanctuary after a concert?  If you are going to do a reception after the concert make sure you have a committee of people to love to entertain in charge…..that is a special gift.  The rewards in hosting concerts are greater than the negatives.  You will demonstrate that your church values the community outside of the building.  People will come into the church for a concert that might not come to worship. It is a door opening opportunity for your congregation to become welcoming neighbors.

Jeannine:  Thank you for sharing your insights into creating and running a incredibly successful concert series.  May you be blessed in your retirement with new challenges and ever more glorious music.
__________________________________________________________

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist and David Jordan, media artist are the creators and performers of the organ and multi-media concert experiences, Bach and Sons, From Sea to Shining Sea and Around the World in 80 Minutes.  Contact the Jordans at david@promotionmusic.org to schedule a performance in your community.

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: