For some reason I ended up in church at an organ recital on Saturday night. Don’t ask why as it is too long a story. In the end I did enjoy it yet the king of instruments, as the organ is often referred to, is not my thing. I find it all a bit too much.
Sitting, listening and watching the organist play gave me an opportunity to get to admire the qualities of the instrument and the skill and dexterity of the musician. The human brain is a magnificent creation. The ability to play different notes and rhythms with both hands and feet at the same time is beyond me and I imagine beyond most. Being an organist must require extreme coordination of the limbs. To get the organ to sing as it did is a fantastic achievement.
The organ itself was no small feat either. Built in 1931 it had just finished its first major overall since being manufactured. Its pipes were hidden high up on the church walls and it was all controlled by an array of electronics. Considering the change in technology since the 1930s to today I was amazed that it had lasted so long.
It played some canny tunes.
But this is not what I wanted to say in my little story. Throughout the performance, while the organist did his dramatic Vincent Price like thing on the keyboards, his wife (I found out later) was sitting by his side ready to turn the music score over so the musician could keep his hands where they were needed.
Now, as my mind wandered, I thought this would be an ideal application for an app. Using a small tablet computer, the app wood display the next dozen bars or so across the screen and the image would roll from right to left as the notes were played. In this way the organist would be able to see what was coming up but would never have to worry about turning over the pages of the manuscript. The tablet could pick up where the musician had got to and could adjust the rate at which the bars flowed across the page accordingly. If it was really clever it could record the notes played for a later review to pick up on mistakes or areas for improvement. It would also remove the need for an organist’s assistant thereby increasing productivity by one hundred percent. This may not be a good idea if they are married however. There is probably already such an app available.
I also thought how sad it was that Keith Emerson had died.