Tag Archives: recital

Halloween Organ Recital

Join the Foothills Methodist Church, 17 Fremont St. in Gloversville on Sunday, October 30, at 3:00 p.m. in the church sanctuary for an exciting Halloween organ recital featuring a smorgasbord of classics, favorites and surprises. Malcolm Kogut will perform pieces such as the vivid and bristling with energy Dubois Toccata and the ubiquitous Toccata in D Minor by J. S. Bach. Other music will include Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Boellmann’s famous suite Toccata, and “In the Garden.” The organ recital is free and open to the public.

Halloween Organ Recital

Join the Foothills Methodist Church in Gloversville on Sunday, October 30, at 3:00 p.m. in the church sanctuary for an exciting organ recital featuring a smorgasbord of classics, favorites and surprises. Malcolm Kogut will perform pieces such as the vivid and bristling with energy Dubois Toccata to the ubiquitous Toccata in D Minor by J. S. Bach. Other music will include Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Boellmann’s famous Suite Gothic Toccata, and the tear jerking “In the Garden.” The organ recital is free and open to the public. For a sample medley of the recital, point your browsers to Youtube, here:

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One thing Malcolm Kogut loves about living in New England is the endless number of mountain trails there is to explore. Malcolm loves challenging himself and friends to explore a new trail together and he enjoys both the defiance of and going with gravity. His favorite hikes over the years have been St. Regis near Saranac Lake, Mt. Baker in Washington state and Ice Caves Mountain in Ellenville, NY. Hiking is one of the best ways to get fit and explore nature at the same time. Malcolm’s commitment to hiking is especially important to keeping up his musical pursuits for, hiking gives him something to play about. After all, nobody lies on their deathbed wishing they worked more.

Make Recitals Great Again

From my “Make Recitals Great Again” recital. It was 95 degrees outside and I don’t know what the temperature was inside the church under those 500 watt flood lights but this was the stickiest, sweatiest and most difficult recitals I have ever played. My fingers were so sweaty that they were sliding off the keys.

This has always been a difficult organ to record because the swell and solo divisions are located in a chamber on the other side of the chancel, the great is located right behind my head and the choir division is installed up in the balcony and consequnetly often sounds out of sync. For this recital I placed the recorder in the middle of the church amongst the people and that seems to have equalized it.

The Throne Room From Star Wars Foothills May

Other Pieces from this Recital:

Fugue in G Major, Bach
Allegro From Concerto II, Bach
Princess Leia’s Theme from Star Wars
Carillon De Westminster by Vierne
Fanfare by Malcolm Kogut
Prelude in C Major, Bach
Battle Hymn of the Republic
Toccata on “Duke Street”
Once In Love With Amy
Hedwig’s Theme from Harry Potter
Trumpet Tune by Marsh
Eternal Father, Strong To Save
20th Century Fox Fanfare
A movement from Jupiter; Bringer of Jollity by Holst From The Planets
Dialog

Malcolm Kogut
malcolm kogut recital pic

I have been sober for 45 minutes

Q: What?
A: Two organ recitals.

Q: Boring!
A: I mean, no, not like that stuff you hear in church on Sunday. Sunday organ can be very boring but this recital, it’s big, like, like really big, like OJ did it big. You gotta come.

Q: We have guitars and a band in my church.
A: The organ has a noble estate in church music. It is a sustaining and strengthening instrument designed for congregational singing. Consider other instruments such as guitars, piano or percussion. Once you play a sound on any of these instruments the sound immediately begins to decay, necessitating more fills and chords. But singing doesn’t work this way. The organ’s sound lifts and sustains the voice of the congregation through each phrase, guiding each breath, and setting the character of the song through its wide range of voices. The organ fills a room naturally making it possible to fill any space. An amplified band gives you a directional, electronic copy of the instruments while the pipe organ needs no amplification; Give it a chance. You may go back to your guitars on Sunday.

Q: Tell me about the two organs.

A: Trinity’s organ is a relatively new three manual tracker which means it is very challenging to play for many organists who are trained but still don’t know what they are doing ergonomically. After the recital, feel free to go up and touch the keys. Malcolm will be giving a talk about the ten ergonomic movements required to properly and effortlessly play a tracker and, how to avoid and cure tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome through natural movement. The talk will begin around 2:30 but make a reservation so he can prepare materials. The Foothill organ is an electronic four manual Rodgers with speakers placed around the room for the ultimate in surround sound.

Q: Is there a Malcolm Kogut action figure?
A: We would think so.

Q: Is Malcolm Kogut still alive?
A: Yes, as far as we know. We don’t have any current information about his health. However, being older than 40, we hope that everything is okay.

Q: Where was Malcolm Kogut born?
A: On a hill, far away in Troy, NY

Q: What is Malcolm Kogut doing now?
A: Supposedly, 2016 has been a busy year for him. However, we do not have any detailed information on what he is doing these days. Maybe you know more. Feel free to share the latest news, gossip and official contact information with the person next to you.

Q: Are there any photos of Malcolm’s current hairstyle or shirtless?
A: There might be. But unfortunately we currently cannot print them here. We are working hard to fill that gap though. Check back tomorrow or Google it.

Q: Where are these recital things?
A: THERE ARE TWO; The first is on April 10, at Trinity Lutheran Church at 42 Guy Park Ave, Amsterdam, NY 12010. The theme here will be “Old Friends.” It will be somewhat selfish on Malcolm’s part in that all the pieces will be pieces that he likes to play, has played many times and they fit like a glove. Not like the OJ glove but, bigger.

The second is on May 22 at Foothills Methodist Church at 17 Fremont St, Gloversville, NY 12078. This recital will consist of patriotic music. The final number is guaranteed elicit a standing ovation from the audience. Both recitals are at three o’clock in the afternoon.

Q: Cost?
A: They’re freeeeeeee! (my Harvy Levin impersonation).

Bio:
A letter from Malcolm Paul to the internet; I am very pleased and excited to be performing these recitals on April 10 and May 22, at three, and I Tertius, who wrote this letter, am pleased to be going, also. Malcolm has been playing the organ since he was 15 and by simple calculations, that makes him OLD which is often fatal and highly contagious; To be more precise (and nerdy), his current age as of right now is 19742 days or (even more geeky) 473804 hours. Malcolm was born on the 16th of January which was a Tuesday meaning he was conceived between April 21 – April 29. His next birthday is only 245 days from today. BTW, at both recitals, I hear there will be cake.

Sample links of each organ (Stars and Stripes):
Foothills Organ: http://youtu.be/MGbI3gHmnKs
Trinity Organ: https://youtu.be/yJQRQaEeNLc

Becoming a Better Singer

Ugh, I went to an organ recital recently and the organist, though technically proficient, was devoid of energy, interpretation, originality or excitement. No wonder today’s youth are not taking up the organ as an instrument because they have to listen to people like that in their churches every Sunday. What a turn off. In many of our churches on Sunday, the organ is like a sports car, backed out of the garage for one hour each week and only to the end of the driveway then back into the garage.

When I work with singers either in the church, workshop or theater venue, I often share one of several simple videos with them. We first watch the video with the sound off. Then we watch it a second time but this time I tell a story based upon the facial expressions and movement of the singer. Then the singers each take a turn doing the same. I then tell them the story of the song and we watch it one final time with the sound still off. Finally, we watch it with the sound on. Listeners often hear the notes and not the words because singers, like organists, put more effort into the notes rather than communicating.

This exercise not only makes the singers aware of their expressions, movement and inflection, but it also makes them cognizant of the importance of words and story telling. All too often singers are mired down with technique, notes and style rather than simple communication. This applies not only to theater performers but church musicians often fall down into that hole, too. I’m not saying they need to employ theatrics into their delivery of the Psalms and holy scripture, just become better communicators of it through basic facial expression, making eye contact and most importantly – BEING PREPARED. If you have to look at the page more than 20% of the time, you’re not prepared to interpret.

I’ll say no more on the topic. You can use any video you like but one of my favorites to start with is Betty Buckley’s interpretation of the song “Meadowlark.” The first video with commentary but, without sound can be found here:

Here is the original video with sound:

So, all you singers, story tellers, poets and organists, “SING . . . ” for me.

Halloween Organ Recital Q&A

When?  Before everyone else, on October 18th, 3:00 p.m. 2015

Where?  Trinity Lutheran Church, 42 Guy Park Ave, Amsterdam, NY 12010 (the United States one, not the other one where pot is legal).

Is there a Cost?  Only my blood, sweat and tears.  All others, free.

Will there be refreshments?  I wouldn’t play otherwise.

Is the church handicap accessible?  Yes, there is a spacious elevator located on the parking lot side entrance. If need be, I will carry you up the stairs (I’ve done it before). Watch the end of the demo video, I show you how to find it.

What kind of organ are you playing?  It is a newly installed three manual tracker, built by a local builder. There will be a dedicatory recital in the upcoming months.  Come to find out when and all the other pertinent deets.

I hate organ recitals, they are boring, arcane, esoteric, stuffy, recondite and they all sound alike.  What are you playing?  I hate organ recitals, too.  I will be playing the ubiquitous, standard “scary” organ music such as the Chopin Funeral March, Bach’s (sic) Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, Boëllmann’s Toccata  plus a few novelty songs and pieces arranged by me.

The organ is currently lounging in it’s summer tuning estate but, here is a demo video of me at my first practice session getting to know the instrument and finding my arm weight. Here I demonstrate the en chamade and the full organ (which distorted my camera’s microphone).

See you then.

-Malcolm (The pastor wants a bio) Insert pretentious crap about myself here)).

Malcolm, a true Capricorn, is actually not funny. He is just really mean and people think he is joking.  He is a lover of ice cream and a runner – because of all the ice cream.  Malcolm is a Nomad in search for the perfect burger and is an especially gifted napper with killer abs (want proof, check out “Mount Baker Glacier Clips.”  Do not judge him before you know him, but just to inform you, you won’t like him.  He is not on Facebook and most likely wouldn’t friend you anyway so this is all you are ever going to get.  Malcolm feels sad for seedless watermelons because, what if they wanted babies?  The humanity.

Do you think organ recitals are long and boring or that organists can be uninspired, uncreative, they play safe or all sound alike? Are you afraid the music will be stuffy, long haired, or worse – like Sunday church organ music? Then you should come to this one which I promise will be unique, fun, engaging and filled with surprises. Come experience “The Scary and Fugal Side of Nursery Rhymes” May 3, 3:00 p.m. at the Foothills United Methodist Church on 17 Fremont Street, Gloversville, 12078. The price is freeeeeeeee! So that you won’t suffer from organ indigestion, in addition to the organ solos there will be guest singers, singing bowls and instrumentalists. Here are two samples of what I will be playing (the second half of each video BTW, is of Len Anderson who took my collection of arrangements and improvisations then rearranged each piece for his saxophone quintet): http://youtu.be/0GMUG7Wr5RA BINGO in Fugue http://youtu.be/h-ZWaiXVnLY Old MacDonald Had A Farm Did you know that there are dozens of diseases a human can catch from a lamb? There are orphan children buried alive in the pillars of the London Bridge? Ring Around the Rosie is about the plague? The original lyrics to “Ten Little Indians (which is still not politically correct)” was also racially offensive? Come discover what other creepy, rapey and phobic topics our joyous childhood songs are really about. The church is handicap accessible with an elevator but it is squirreled away in a closet. Here is a short video tour showing where the elevator is hidden within the building: http://youtu.be/qXO5NFGKo9c -Malcolm. After watching his parents murdered by a mugger in a back alley, Malcolm Kogut grew up vowing to become the world’s greatest crime . . . wait, that’s Batman. Theorizing that one could time travel within his own lifetime, Mr. Kogut stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator . . . no, that was Sam Beckett. After being bitten by a radioactive spid . . . uhm, Malcolm suffers from nefelibata. Truth.

Do you think organ recitals are long and boring or that organists can be uninspired, uncreative, they play safe or all sound alike?  Are you afraid the music will be stuffy, long haired, or worse – like Sunday church organ music?

Then you should come to this one which I promise will be unique, fun, engaging and filled with surprises.  Come experience “The Scary and Fugal Side of Nursery Rhymes” May 3, 3:00 p.m. at the Foothills United Methodist Church on 17 Fremont Street, Gloversville, 12078.  The price is freeeeeeeee!  So that you won’t suffer from organ indigestion, in addition to the organ solos there will be guest singers, singing bowls and instrumentalists.

Here are two samples of what I will be playing (the second half of each video BTW, is of Len Anderson who took my collection of arrangements and improvisations then rearranged each piece for his saxophone quintet):
http://youtu.be/0GMUG7Wr5RA                BINGO in Fugue
http://youtu.be/h-ZWaiXVnLY                    Old MacDonald Had A Farm

Did you know that there are dozens of diseases a human can catch from a lamb?  There are orphan children buried alive in the pillars of the London Bridge?  Ring Around the Rosie is about the plague? The original lyrics to “Ten Little Indians (which is still not politically correct)”  was also racially offensive?  Come discover what other creepy, rapey and phobic topics our joyous childhood songs are really about.

The church is handicap accessible with an elevator but it is squirreled away in a closet.  Here is a short video tour showing where the elevator is hidden within the building:

-Malcolm.
After watching his parents murdered by a mugger in a back alley, Malcolm Kogut grew up vowing to become the world’s greatest crime . . . wait, that’s Batman.  Theorizing that one could time travel within his own lifetime, Mr. Kogut stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator . . . no, that was Sam Beckett.   After being bitten by a radioactive spid . . . uhm, Malcolm suffers from nefelibata.  Truth.