|Jan-Piet Knijff||Fish, chips and organs (interview with three
Het ORGEL 96 (2000), nr. 2, 30-34 [summary]
Jan-Piet Knijff interviewed three relatively young Dutch organists about the way they try to make their concerts interesting to a larger audience. Geert Bierling (1956), city organist of Rotterdam, plays transcriptions of famous orchestra pieces. His concerts in concert hall De Doelen are attended by an average of 900 people. Jetty Podt (1963) is organist of the St.-Stevenskerk at Nijmegen. She organises organ concerts for children. In the Stevenskerk also organ & film-concerts take place. Podt says that she hopes to make people better acquainted with the organ in that way, not to teach them to appreciate - for example - Messiaen at the same time. Johan Luijmes (1963) is organist at the Eusebiuskerk at Arnhem. He wants to promote music in general and use that as a basis to interest the audience. He organises 'Jazz-organ-concerts': 'I am not aiming at getting a large audience when I organise a concert. The point is that you have to offer quality.' Bierling thinks that the number of people listening to organs is important: 'I have in fact a shop; I like selling music to the people.' Jetty Podt distinguishes two steps: she wants to offer quality, but thinks that it is important to reach as many people as possible as well: 'Giving a concert makes no sense when nobody is listening.' The three organists are not happy with the museum-culture they recognise in the organ world. Bierling stresses that it is important to entertain. Podt finds the contact between the organist and the audience very important. Luijmes states that the haute cuisine of historicism can be marvellous, but that fish & chips can be delicious too.