Samstag, Jänner 06, 2007

To boldly go where no man has gone before . . .

OK, I admit, someone has been in there before. But it was the first time I have ever been INSIDE A PIPE ORGAN!!!!,

I went to the American Guild of Organist's Super Saturday today at the U of Utah. I was expecting to get to play the organ, but had no idea I would get to go inside.

See the panel on the right of the organ bench? It's a door!

Once inside you're in a maze of pipes and mechanical stuff. The organ at the U, built in 2000 by Lively-Fulcher, is a tracker organ. This means (in case you're too weak to click on the link) that when you press a key, the key moves a stick or series of sticks (see them in the pictures) that actually opens a valve to allow air through the correct organ pipe. If you've opened a lot of stops, you might be pushing on a bunch of sticks--hard work!

A series of ladders provide access to the upper levels of the pipes. I was only brave enough to go up one ladder (I was afraid I would be too scared to go back down!), where I was able to see these reed pipes (above) and peek through a door and see the back of the positif pipes (right). If you look carefully you can see louvers that open and shut to make that section of the organ louder or softer. Behind them is the decorative grillwork you see from the outside.

I also got to play the organ. Believe it or not, that was more exciting than getting inside. I was almost the last to play. I had chosen an easy piece in which I got confused by the number of manuals (keyboards). Dr. Udy, the University organist, pulled out stops and reminded me which manual to use and made my piece actually sound good. I was so overwhelmed by the experience that when we broke for the next class I completely forgot to go to class. I went to the student lounge and called Paul to tell him how jazzed I was. Then I had lunch and knitted.

See, you knew there would be some knitting in there somewhere.

I kind of wish I'd gone to the class, but on the other hand it was good to have a contemplative hour with Paul's sock, which is ready to bind off (toe up, tapestry needle bind off). No photo of that.

However, I did take a picture of what happened at home while I was out:

Howard and Misha (she's 2) built this great snowman, complete with legs and feet.

And I am going to go build the arms for Baby Arwen. I think I'll knit until I drop and see if there's any human way I can finish them before I sleep (and miles to knit before I sleep, and miles to knit before I . . . oops--the Frost estate is picky about copyright).


Margene hat gesagt…

What great pictures! They have a very artistic look to them...hard to tell at time just what's there. Nice work.

CarolineF hat gesagt…

Interesting pictures of the organ! Organs are such complex machines, and to think they're done without electricity (at least the good ones are).
I'm glad you found Cast On through KnitMe. I have not listened to too many other podcasts, but Brenda is really great.

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