December 2014 TAO Chapter News–Mid-Atlantic Region

District of Columbia September 22, the chapter hosted its first meeting of the season with a hymn festival and installation of officers at the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Bethesda, Md. (Thomas Smith, host). John Walker, AGO president, was the organist for the service, which featured lessons read by chapter members, interspersed with a variety of hymns in different styles. Officers sworn in for the coming year include Russell Weismann (dean), Victoria Shields (sub-dean), Jason Abel (secretary), Irvin Peterson (hospitality coordinator), Jeremy Filsell (education coordinator), Irv Lawless (archivist), and Thomas Smith (newsletter editor). Weismann encouraged members to practice warm hospitality toward newcomers and members at our … [Read more...]

December 2104 Chapter News–Northeast Region

Boston, MA September 7, the chapter held its opening service and installation of officers at the Church of the Advent. The Rev. Carl Daw (chaplain) led participants in “Deliverance: Exodus to Revelation,” a service of readings and hymns with Mark Dwyer (organist and choirmaster) accompanying. At the conclusion of the service, those in attendance enjoyed gathering in the church hall for friendship,reminiscences about the wonderful 2014 AGO National Convention, and a meal. —Claire DeCusati Boston chapter website Merrimack Valley, MA Sept. 9, the chapter held its installation of new officers at Union Congregational Church in North Reading. The Rev. Dr. Richard Hughes officiated, andFrederick Mac Arthur accompanied the … [Read more...]

St. Louis to host AGO 2015 North-Central Convention

In 1763, Pierre Laclede sailed from New Orleans up the Mississippi River to find a suitable location for a trading post in the Upper Louisiana territory. He found an ideal setting on top of a limestone bluff and named it for Louis IX of France. In 2015 St. Louis will serve as host for the AGO North-Central convention, scheduled from June 22-24, 2015. Featured performers include John Benke, Christopher Marks, Anna Myeong, Thomas Murray, Barbara Raedeke, and Daryl Robinson. Featured locations include Christ Church Cathedral, the Fox Theater, Sheldon Concert Hall, and Third Baptist Church, among many others. For more information on the 2015 North-Central Regional Convention, please visit the convention website … [Read more...]

AGO Awarded $20,000 Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

The American Guild of Organists has been awarded a grant by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to support educational programming in 2015 and new music commissioned for the AGO National Convention in Houston, Texas, June 19–23, 2016. The $20,000 NEA “Art Works” grant will support Pipe Organ Encounters for youth and adults, performances and workshops at all seven AGO Regional Conventions, the Guild’s professional certification program for organists and choral conductors, and new music commissions. While the Guild has benefitted from NEA support for the past five consecutive AGO National Conventions, the 2015 grant represents the first support the Guild has received for its educational programs and regional conventions. “This grant … [Read more...]

AGO Members Join Choir in Residence at London’s St. Paul Cathedral

The chancel choir of Peachtree Road United Methodist Church, Atlanta, directed by Scott Atchison (music director) and accompanied by Nicole Marane, (associate music director), made a pilgrimage to England in August 2014, serving as choir in residence for a week at St. Paul's Cathedral, London. Highlights included the U.K. premiere of American composer Blake Henson's My Flight for Heaven. In addition to works by Stanford, Howells, and Bairstow, the choir sang a broad sampling of music by North American composers, including Frank Boles, Rene Clausen, and Lee Hoiby. Home page photo: Graham Lacado. … [Read more...]

2015-2016 Pogorzelski-Yankee Scholarship Awards Submission Begins January 1

Submissions for the 2015-16 Pogorzelski-Yankee Scholarship Awards will begin January 1st on the AGO website. Two new scholarships will be awarded in 2015: 1) entering first-year undergraduate student and 2) entering first-year graduate student. The online application period will run for 6 weeks beginning Jan 1, 2015. … [Read more...]

November 2014 TAO Chapter News

Northeast Region Bangor, ME June 2, the chapter held its annual meeting and a members’ recital at Orono United Methodist Church (host Barbara Smith). The recital included performances by the chapter’s three scholarship students and was followed by a delicious dinner catered by the church. —Julia Morris-Myers Bangor chapter website Binghamton, NY Aug. 3, chapter member Roberta Rowland-Raybold played a benefit recital at St. James Episcopal Church in Lake Delaware. Proceeds are to be used in support of the choir of St. James and in vocal training for young students. The organ at St. James, originally built by Möller, was relocated and rebuilt by Sid Chase of Chase Organ Company, Worcester. Eleven chapter members made … [Read more...]

Free Holiday Shipping from the AGO Store

Looking for the perfect holiday gift for the organist in your life? The AGO online store is offering free shipping on all items in stock. Items include AGO Sweatshirts and other clothing items Timeline of the Organ (pamphlet) Preaching to the Choir (Book) Exam preparation materials Shop the AGO store … [Read more...]

December 2014 TAO Feature Article

THE KOTZSCHMAR ORGAN, MERRILL AUDITORIUM/CITY HALL PORTLAND, MAINE FOLEY-BAKER INC. Portland's Kotzschmar organ stands out as one of the most resilient of public organs, a foot soldier of front rank in the campaign of organ awareness. In the century between its 1912 dedication and its 2012 dismantling for renovation, Austin Opus 323 always played, often frequently. The original donor, publishing titan Cyrus H.K. Curtis, gave additional funds in 1927 for more stops and percussion. A municipal commission and city dollars established the position of municipal organist, with early prominent players including Will C. Macfarlane and Edwin H. Lemare. The organ’s first decades were not without contention, particularly during the … [Read more...]

Pipedreams Features Music from the AGO 2012 National Convention in Nashville

Pipedreams presents "New in Nashville," which contains concert performances and engaging contemporary compositions from Tennessee’s "Music City." Many of the pieces were recorded during the AGO National Convention held in Nashville in 2012. The program is available on the Pipedreams website or through your local NPR station. Please check your local listings. Among the featured works are: Hour 1 KURT KNECHT: The Missouri Sonata (2013)–Wyatt Smith (1970 Aeolian-Skinner/St. Andrew Lutheran Church, Franklin, TN) Pipedreams Archive (r. 3/3/14) ROBERTO SIERRA: Organ Concerto (premiere) –Nashville Symphony Orchestra/Giancarlo Guerrero, conductor; Todd Wilson (2007 Schoenstein/Schermerhorn Symphony Center, Nashville, TN) Pipedreams … [Read more...]