Schools Organ Day 2014

31st March 2014, Winchester Cathedral

Photo of Simon Williams and School Children looking at Winchester Cathedral's Chamber organLocal school children, teachers and Winchester Cathedral sing praises of prototype workshop as an unqualified success which, as a result, is likely to be repeated in the near future...

130 children from seven schools across Hampshire spent the day at Winchester Cathedral learning about the pipe organ. Led by Cathedral Organist Andrew Lumsden, the day had activities and input from the Royal College of Organists, the Winchester & District Association of Organists, Hampshire Music Service, Foundation Music at the University of Winchester and Winchester Cathedral.

“It was amazing, I’ve had a really good day” said one child as she left, while another was heard telling his teacher he wanted to learn to play the organ after being wowed by the 7000 pipes in the Cathedral organ.

Activities included a session with the WOOFYT (Wooden One Octave Organ for Young Technologists) with Jeremy Sampson; an opportunity to play the Cathedral’s chamber organ in a session with the Royal College of Organists Academy Director Simon Williams, a singing session and a tour of the cathedral.

Photo of 130 children in Winchester Cathedral Choir watching organist Andrew Lumsdem playing the organArchitect of the day Colin Harvey, Chairman of the Winchester & District Association of Organists said “it’s so rare for children to hear a pipe organ these days and yet it’s the oldest keyboard instrument – in fact the ancient Greeks invented the keyboard for the pipe organ! Learning about the music and mechanics of the organ helps our school children’s learning in so many fields – music, science, history and art – and it can also be a lot of fun!

“We hope to run similar events in the future aimed at different age ranges. Today has been a huge success and we hope to learn from it for events in the future.”

Further photos of the day can be viewed at https://www.flickr.com/gp/nigelbarker/31We25/, with thanks to Nigel Barker.

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