Lessons for the New Organist

The AGO’s Committee on Continuing Professional Education is dedicated to providing answers to common questions from anyone learning to play the organ. We are developing a series of thirty videos to teach basic skills and techniques to beginning organists, including pianists who are making a transition to organ-playing.

Lesson 1: A Pianist’s First Steps in Transitioning to the Organ
Lesson 2: The Architecture and Layout of the American Pipe Organ
Lesson 3: Coupling Organ Divisions
Lesson 4: Swell Pedals & Dynamic Expression
Lesson 5: An Introduction to Pedaling & Organ Music Scores
Lesson 6: Families of Organ Tone
Lesson 7: Mixture & Mutation Stops
Lesson 8: Registrations for Contemplative & Jubilant Hymns
Lesson 9: General & Divisional Pistons
Lesson 10: The Crescendo Pedal
Lesson 11: Does the shoe fit? Organ Shoes & Bench Height
Lesson 12: The Basics of Pedal Technique
Lesson 13: DIY: Adding Pedals
Lesson 14: DIY: Varying your organ registrations
Lesson 15: DIY: Using time & touch to shape melody
Lesson 16: DIY: Reharmonizing your hymns
Lesson 17: DIY: Key modulations: when, why & how
Lesson 18: DIY: Using registrations to illustrate hymn texts
Lesson 20: Creative use of limited pedaling in hymns
Lesson 21: An introduction to hymn meter & the metrical index
Lesson 22: Choosing alternate hymn texts and tunes by examining meter
Lesson 23: Adapting folk and guitar music to the organ
Lesson 24: Bridging gaps during communion services
Lesson 25: Variety in hymn-playing, regardless of instrument size
Lesson 26: How to use MIDI functions on organ consoles
Lesson 27: How to be an excellent substitute organist
Lesson 28: Getting around on the Hammond Organ
Lesson 29: Determining your pedaling in organ literature
Lesson 30: Answers to some important questions