gazman Posted July 10, 2008 Share Posted July 10, 2008 As some of you will know, I give monthly organ concerts at one of my churches. It used to be weekly before a back injury (from which I've now fortunately recovered) made this difficult. I try to make these "tuneful", and try to balance the programme so that there's as much for the average listener to Radio Three as there is to the average listener of Classic FM (or even "The Organist Entertains"!), with the odd lollipop thrown in too! We tend to get an audience of regulars, plus the occasional holiday-maker, and the church makes a bob or three. This evening, for a change, we had an unashamedly popular programme which I called "Perkins Plays Pops". It was the sort of programme which most organists and "cultured" music lovers - I would have thought - would have winced at! BWV 565, Handel's "Largo", "Air on a G string", some Lefebure-Wely, etc. We publicized it as a popular programme, and received a very large audience indeed. The applause between items and at the end of the concert showed just how much it was enjoyed. I had expected that the more "discerning" among the audience would have not enjoyed it so much as they might the regular recitals. But, apart from one who firstly said "What a load of old rubbish!" before saying "Actually, that was an incredibly enjoyable evening. Thank you.", I was inundated with compliments about the programme from the general concert-goer and from the local organists and from those whose tastes - I had previously assumed - were rather "high brow" who all described the programme in glowing terms. It was pretty obvious that an evening of ear-ticklers had delighted a whole audience, and I lost count of all the compliments. It's got me thinking. I had numerous people say something along the lines that they enjoyed it so much (including those who had never previously attended an organ recital) that they're going to attend next month's recital. But they're going to expect the same sort of thing again! (incidentally, one of my regulars suggested playing the same programme each month to attract people back!). And I'm wondering whether I should go on playing my normal type of programme, or to play to the gallery and include the odd bit of "proper" organ music in order to "educate" people. I think I have a choice of giving what we would perceive as a standard organ recital each month and getting a small audience, or entertaining them with the average Classic FM fayre (and, hopefully, interesting them in some of the organ's repertoire along the way) and getting a sizeable audience attending each month. What would you do? Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Please sign in to comment
You will be able to leave a comment after signing in
Sign In Now