May. 7, 2016

Shoes, Part II

(con't from Part II)
Iin reading about the proper footwear for organ playing, we're led to believe that practicing the organ in chunky shoes is like playing the manuals in work gloves (photo); this is true, but only partially.
Sometimes organists in the northern countries who must play in winter in the middle of a non-heated church use thin-knitted gloves to perform with, of course, the tips of the fingers cut out.
Maybe it would not be possible to play a virtuoso piece very well with things like this on the hands, but these types of gloves are actually quite good for keeping the fingers warm during the playing of hymns, improvisations, or simple pieces.
It may be argued that hitting the right pedal key on the pedalboard is more a matter of muscle memory than of having the right shoes especially with toes-only pedalling, but, regardless of your teacher's opinion about it, your footwear is important.
Hitting the right pedal is also a matter of how many organs you play; if you're a beginner and used to playing on one instrument, really get comfortable with that pedalboard, and then wearing the same shoes you move to the next organ, you'll find that you're not hitting the right pedal keys and have to look down until you get the "feel" for that pedalboard.
In this situation accuracy in pedal playing isn't a matter of your shoes; it's the fact that the pedalboard has changed.
(con't in Part III)