PORTATIVE ORGAN | Level 1 – Beginner

Portative Organ I: Discovering the Portative Organ: Basics of Playing

6 sessions - Self-paced

Course Description

Organs played an important role in the West-European religious milieu of the 12th and 13th centuries. As a turn of fate, the organ is one of the instruments for which a significant number of written and iconographic records of its use, construction, and symbolism have survived. This enables us to recover and bring back to life music that was once attributed to the medieval organ.

In this course students will:


Learn about the proper position of the body, the arms and the hands for playing the portative organ


Explore and learn medieval pieces for the instrument


Develop a playing technique and explore the musical capabilities of the portative organ


Learn how to tune the portative organ


Learn about the different types of portative organs



February 19 to June 10, 2024
6 sessions – Self-paced




1 credit ECTS: 360€


English - Spanish


Level 1 / Beginner


No experience with the instrument is required. Student must have basic musical knowledge and be able to read modern music notation.

Access to a portative organ is necessary.



Portative organSession 1| First Steps: Position and the Bellow

Session 2 | The Portative Organ as a Wind Instrument: Basics of Bellow 1 

Session 3 | The Portative Organ as a Wind Instrument: Basics of Bellow 2

Session 4 | Getting to Know the Medieval Portative Organ Models: Organ Models (+ Basics of Bellow 3)

Session 5 | Learning to Tune the Portative Organ: Tuning 1

Session 6 | Organ Ornamentation According to Moravia’s Treatise (+ Tuning 2)

Teaching Methodology

This course will be comprised of:

    • 6 virtual one-on-one lessons (1 hour each)
    • Recorded introductory lecture or one group live Q&A session (30 min)
    • 6 tutorial videos (10-15 minutes each)
    • Downloadable materials and links to additional resources

Schedules and assignments:

    • The class dates and times will be scheduled with the instructor.
    • There will be some suggested deadlines to submit assignments.
    • The student workload to take the lessons, review the materials and practice is approximately 4.25 hours per session.
    • Students taking the course for credit must complete all assignments and class requirements.

Technical Requirements

    • Broadband Internet connection / WIFI

    • External or internal webcam
    • External or internal microphone
    • Speakers or headphones
    • Possibility of printing downloaded materials
    • Possibility of scanning your assignments
    • Possibility of auto-recording (audio and video)

Enroll Now

Places are limited for each section, so sign up early.

The International Course of Medieval Music Besalú offers singers and instrumentalists the possibility of studying the repertoires of monodic and polyphonic music composed between the 11th and 13th centuries.

With the support of: