Overall, I think things are getting better. My sight reading is still atrocious, my control of the pedals on the organ is mediocre at best and I still do a very average job of keeping the organ volume level at an appropriate one for all. However, i’ve got a much better idea of what sounds are going to come out with most of the presets, I’m using the manuals better and I’ve even done some pieces during the offering and as introits. So we’ll call that progress.
I’m enjoying a publication called “The Organist”. It comes out every two months and features organ music which follows the church calendar. When I first looked at a copy the first pieces I saw were so far beyond me I dismissed the entire publication. However, upon looking further I’ve found some pieces that are simpler, some are manuals only and all are catalogued for where they might fit into a service. I recommend it as a great tool for a new organist.
Another resource I’m starting to look into is the RCCO, the Royal Canadian College of Organists. Again, sounds a lot more than what I am but they are there to help train new organists and offer various scholarships. Reading the description of one scholarship made me think they were intending it for young people who have piano training and want to expand. Well, I am an old man with keyboard skills and a job, is that close enough? I applied for it; we’ll see if i get a response. If I get to the next stage there’s an audition. That should be funny. Hopefully they’ll let me tape it.