On Sunday, Sarah will have her first outing to Fjordgård, to play for worship at the chapel on the ‘human powered’ harmonium (pump organ in the USA). In much of Europe and the US they are mostly regarded as outdated and antique, but here there are modern builders and the instruments are quite useable. This does however mean that Sarah has never played one before, but as always, the Lord provides, this time in the shape of an instrument which someone donated to the Finnsnes church a couple of weeks ago. So, instead of a two hour round trip to practice in Fjordgård, she was able to learn here. There is a certain art to playing, because you have to remember to keep pedaling so the air doesn’t run out, whilst not playing (necessarily) at the same speed you are pedaling: it’s a bit like patting your head and rubbing your tummy.
The only slight problem we encountered was locating the instrument, which was stashed in the ventilation plant room. Having overcome the initial fits of laughter at the coordination required to play (did I also mention that you control the volume with ‘knee flaps’?) she got down to some serious practice. We also found that it’s where the ‘pauker’ are stored (timpani), so I’m considering writing a piece for harmonium and pauker, which will of course have to be debuted to a small, hand selected audience of close friends, in the cupboard.