I’m doing a project on young organists and where they’re coming from. In that research I have spoken to many young and not so young organists. I have received nearly 300 replies to my questionnaire and a great deal of support from those who have responded.
Over 43% of the respondents aged 30 and over took up the organ because they were interested and had played the piano so already had some keyboard skills. Of those, 8% took up the organ because there was no one else to play in church and so they stepped in, with little or no training. Many said they would like some training on the organ with similar schemes of encouragement that younger organists benefit from today.
I was looking through Facebook today and saw that the RSCM in Wales have a scheme to do that! It’s for adult organists who would like support on the organ. Working with no more than 5 other adults they will be taught by a RSCM accredited tutor. The cost of the lesson is split between the attendees. The lesson is designed to help with hymn playing, pedals and stops. I think it’s brilliant and hope that other areas will have it soon too!