1915 Austin organ at Spreckels Pavilion, Balboa Park, San Diego, California

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Programs that feature this organ

#0205: Reach Out and Touch!

It’s a game of getting-to-know-you. First a few notes, then some others and before you know it, we’re into a new adventure in sound. For hundreds of years, players have explored the limits of their instruments and of their own techniques in works that evolved from the sheer tactile pleasure of pushing down the keys and seeing what happens. Marius Monnekendam in the Netherlands, Robert Elmore in the United States, Girolamo Frescobaldi of Italy, J.S. Bach in Germany and many others have written some of their most exciting music following this scheme. Tactile and tantalizing, our program explores four hundred years of repertoire, instruments from three centuries, and the delights of things done by hand. Better than a good massage, with a tingling sensation guaranteed, we Reach out and Touch the Art of the Toccata, this week on Pipedreams.

#0216: The American Muse

We’ve a sampler of somewhat unusual and extraordinarly characterful music on our next Pipedreams program, compositions AND instruments by Americans, including James Woodman’s Lydian Versets, played on the John Nordlie organ at the Lutheran Church in Brandon, South Dakota. We’ll hear other pieces by Dan Locklair, Robert Elmore, Richard Purvis, and Philip Glass, played in Stamford, Connecticut, Collegedale, Tennessee, Portland, Oregon, and San Diego, plus we’ll visit the grand old Granad Theatre in Kansas City for some snappy show tunes from yesterday and the day before. Something’s got to give, when we break through maddining misperceptions and expose the pipe organ for what it really always is a marvelously magical music-making machine, playing everything from prayers to pops. We honor a nation of organbuilders and composers and celebrate The American Muse this week on Pipedreams.

#0323: Summer Fun

It’s time to take the organ out of its religious context, and enjoy it out of doors at Balboa Park in San Diego. We’ll also visit other venues where summer concerts win new friends for the King of Instruments. From the Methuen Music Hall in Massachusetts to the Mormon Tabernacle, from Balboa Park in San Diego to the Berks County Museum in Pennsylvania, we celebrate a season of adventure and discovery, a sampler of seasonal recital venues coast to coast. It’s all about having some Summer Fun.