Monday, November 2, 2009

die Orgel

I have a new favorite German word...Orgel (organ). It's just a fun word to say. When I first saw it printed I had to giggle...just a little.

Last night I went to a concert for the Baden-W├╝rttemberg state youth choir. The concert was held in the church of David's parents. While this church is by no means and architectural wonder like the well-known churches in Europe, it does have some beautiful stained glass windows and a very impressive organ. This organ is so impressive that it takes up the entire back part of the church.

We got to the concert with a few minutes to spare, unfortunately there were no good empty seats on the bottom level. We ventured up to the upper floor in search of seats. As luck would have it, three seats with a prime view of the choir and organ had just been emptied. These made for an excellent show. One thing about going to watch a choir is that it is purely entertainment for the ears. Since I need to have multiple levels of sensory entertainment, I was lucky enough to be able to watch the organist play, which is a show in and of itself.

In the middle of the concert, the choir took a break and the audience was treated to a wonderful piece fur die orgel (btw the u in fur should have two dots above it but I'm not using a German keyboard at the moment). During the piece, David and I started talking about the organ. Commenting on things like 'where does an organist practice? In a church?' From there, I commented about how it would be impossible to own your own organ because even the small ones cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. David told me that the church actually renovated the organ about 15 years ago for about 1.3 million euros. David even rode his bike to help raise money for the renovations. I think it is pretty great that there are still places in the world where a church wants to spend that kind of money to renovate an organ and that there are still people who want to work to raise the money.


  1. That sounds amazing. I always love going down to Savannah and seeing the organs in the big churches down there. It really is a very cool instrument.

  2. Ah, yes. Organs are almost prohibitively expensive. We recently got a new organ for our church (nothing nearly as grand as the one you describe), and I was stunned at the price.
    Sounds like a lovely experience, my dear!
    (And yes, orgel is a funny word. I'm not sure how it's pronounced in German, but it looks how one would onomatopoeically spell a throat gurgle.)

  3. After I wrote my comment, it struck me that "gurgle" is an onomatopoeia as well. So much for that English degree. "Orgel" sounds more accurate to me though. ;-)

  4. Heh. Kristy. Nerd. I love it.

    "orgel" -- sounds dirty to me --

    But a lovely experience ... seize 'em all, dear.