‘Live’ and electronic musical instruments cannot be compared

Austrian professor donates organ to Belarusian State Academy of Music

By Tatiana Ponomareva

The organ, made in the Philippines, is to find a home at the Belarusian State Academy of Music, for use in teaching students. The new conservatoire instrument is a gift from Austrian Professor Johann Trummer, an honorary doctor of the Belarusian State Academy of Music. He designed the instrument himself and made it with help from his St. Petersburg assistant.

“The organ is perfect for teaching students, suitable for all pieces, and is very compact,” notes Vladimir Nevdakh, who heads the Academy’s organ class. Unusually, it has an electric motor. “During the times of Bach, organ blowers were used rather than motors, with someone responsible for working the bellows, blowing air to allow play,” explains Mr. Nevdakh. Its electric motor is the only aspect which drastically distinguishes the contemporary organ from its classical ancestor.

The instrument has been long awaited by the Academy, with a special room dedicated to its use. Former pupils of Mr. Nevdakh (an organ class has existed at the Academy for a decade already) learnt on an artificial electronic organ. “The new instrument differs from the electronic in having ‘live’ sound and a heart. It boasts perfect tuning. An electronic organ is also good, but its sound is electronic. ‘Live’ and electronic instruments are incomparable,” adds Mr. Nevdakh.

A concert is planned for April 27th, at the Belarusian State Academy of Music, allowing us to hear the organ played, with Mr. Trummer himself performing.

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