Organ-ise and RCO put new Worcester Quire organ at heart of community

Organ-ise and RCO put new Worcester Quire organ at heart of community

Worcester Cathedral’s new four-manual 53-stop Quire organ will be the centre of attention for 250 children in March as part of a massive educational event, Organ-ise.

Based around the design, construction and commissioning of the new organ, the four-day event from 3rd to 6th March 2009 will see students from schools in and around Worcester taking part in a range of learning activities based on the curriculum requirements of science, technology and music.

All students, irrespective of musical experience and expertise, will have an opportunity to try their hand at playing an organ.

Organ-ise has been devised by Worcester Cathedral with support from the Royal College of Organists (RCO).

Head of Education and Outreach at the RCO Simon Williams said: “Organ-ise has been designed to take advantage of the wonderful versatility of the pipe organ as a teaching resource.

“The organ’s range, flexibility and complexity make it a unique instrument for the teaching of music of course, but what many people don’t realise is how much science and technology is involved in its construction and operation

“This can help students gain practical hands-on experience and an understanding of concepts ranging from traditional crafts and materials; through the physics of pressure, waves and electromagnetism; and right up to date with modern electronics and computer control systems.”

Organ-ise is aimed at Key Stage 3 and 4 students who are studying any or all of music, physics and design and technology at school. The students will work in groups and on their own to solve problems, make connections and improve their knowledge and understanding of the curriculum.

As well as working with teachers and the Cathedral’s musicians, they will have opportunities to meet and learn from the craftsmen who have worked on the construction of the organ.

Included in the day will also be sessions using the Woofyt, a remarkable hands-on working model of a pipe organ which helps student to explore the science and technology of the real thing.

Kevern Oliver from the Cathedral’s organising team added: “In holding this event, the Cathedral is continuing its thousand-year-old role as not just a place of worship and prayer but as a centre for teaching and the arts.

“Organ-ise is an imaginative way of underlining the relevance and role of the organ in the modern world, and of helping ensure that the widest possible community is involved in celebrating the inauguration of the cathedral’s first major pipe organ in 150 years.”

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