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Free pizza Friday: Kids' intro to pipe organ in Milford

Andre Lamar * Delaware
andre.lamar@doverpost.com
Dover Post

Musician Jon Rania wants to prevent the organ from fading into obscurity.

His solution is to entice children (age 6 and up) to join the Southern Delaware Chapter of the American Guild of Organists.

“The organ is known as the king of the instruments,” Rania said. “If you look at the organ from an orchestral standpoint, you can almost get an entire orchestra into an organ.”

One way Rania will attempt this is the free “Pedals, Pipes and Pizza” event at Avenue United Methodist Church in Milford Friday, featuring a light pizza supper and refreshments.

Rania, co-founder and dean of the Southern Delaware Chapter, said it’s important children learn how to play the organ because most of their members are middle-aged.

“We need young folks to step up and take our place, at some point,” he said. “We want to expose particularly young people to the organ, because it’s not as widely taught in school programs or in other places offering music lessons.”

The overarching American Guild of Organists is a national organization of 14,700 members and 300 chapters. Its mission is to foster a thriving community of musicians who share their knowledge and inspire passion for the organ, according to its website.

On a local level, the Southern Delaware Chapter has most of its members based in Kent and Sussex Counties, Rania said. Many play organ in their respective churches.

He said children should give the organ a chance because it’s special.

“It could be playable from one person sitting at a console, or what we call the key desk,” he added. “They can replicate all those orchestral sounds from just that one instrument. I think that’s really pretty awesome.”

IF YOU GO

WHEN 5:30 p.m., Friday

WHERE Avenue United Methodist Church, 20 N. Church St., Milford

MORE INFO Contact Jon Rania at 245-1881

American Guild of Organists website