Celebration of organ music strikes the right chord

Celebration of organ music strikes the right chord

TWENTY talented musicians of all ages have gathered at a North-East cultural centre for a celebration of one of the oldest instruments in classical music.

Players from across the country congregated at Ushaw Historic House for a special event weekend dedicated to the pipe organ.

The weekend was organised by James Parsons, vice-president of The Organ Club, who is perhaps best known for founding the organisation Oundle for Organists.

He said: “Everyone has played wonderfully. It’s been a massive spectrum of age and ability. We had one performer aged just 13, and some in their 70s and 80s.

“Being based in the attractive and unusual surroundings of Ushaw has made it very special.”

Visitors enjoyed personal tuition with Mr Parsons, and with Brigitte Harris, Director of Music for St Andrew’s and St George’s West, in Edinburgh.

With their support, the organists honed their skills by practising on Ushaw’s main organ, which dates back to the 1840s and was originally built by J. C. Bishop.

As well as reciting their own pieces in a group concert, visitors were treated to performances from acclaimed organists David Goode, at Durham Cathedral, and William Saunders, in St Cuthbert’s Chapel.

The event is expected to return to Ushaw in 2020. Anyone wishing to express their interest is asked to email James Parsons at contact@jamesparsons.org.

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