Metropolitan New Jersey Chapter

Last updated: June 4, 2014 at 17:57 pm

Message from the Dean 

Welcome to the Metro New Jersey Chapter of the AGO!

We are celebrating our 93rd year and are very excited about our upcoming programs and the new energy in our chapter. We have planned a variety of entertaining and informative events for the 2013-14 season, as listed below.

New members, both organists and organ aficionados, are always welcome. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments.

Preston Dibble, Dean


Local Events





Monday, September 23 – 6:00 PM
Clergy/Musician Dinner
Calvary Episcopal Church, Summit
Jim Little, host
The Reverend Canon Victoria R. Sirota,
St. John the Divine, speaker
Reservations required $20/person

Monday, October 21 – 7:30 PM
Members Sharing Music for
Advent, Christmas and Epiphany
BYO Music to Swap: proceeds benefit the George Markey Scholarship Fund
First Presbyterian Church, Caldwell
Barbara and Noel Piercy, hosts

Sunday, November 24 – 4:00 PM
Chapter and Regional RCYO winner and Rising Star, Ryan Kennedy, recitalist
Grace Church, Newark
Joe Arndt, host

Monday, January 20 – 9:30–3:45
January Jump Start Mini-Convention
Immaculate Conception R.C. &
Central Presbyterian Churches, Montclair
Preston Dibble and Jonathan Hall, hosts
Rick Erickson, Holy Trinity Lutheran, NYC: Improvisation and Interpreting Hymns, Hymn Festival
Anne Matlack, Grace Episcopal, Madison: Global Choral Music for the Lectionary
$15 Registration. Lunch on your own in Montclair
Snow date: Saturday, January 25

Sunday, March 9 at 4 PM, and Monday, March 10 – 10 AM–12:30 PM
Recital and Masterclass, Judith Hancock
Our Lady of Sorrows, South Orange
Glenn Devitt, host
Tri-sponsored by The Cali School of Montclair State University, Our Lady of Sorrows Church,
and Metro NJ Chapter AGO

Monday, May 12 – 12:00 PM Noon
Metro Mid-day Munch in May at Morrow Memorial United Methodist in Maplewood
Holland Jancaitis, performer and host
Lunch $8

Monday, June 9 – 6:00 PM
End-of-year-soirée and Installation of Officers at the home of Glen Devitt.
Reservations required


Summer Organ Concert Series. Free-will offering.
St Philip the Apostle Church
488 Saddle River Rd. at Pehle Ave., Saddle Brook, NJ. (201) 843-1888.
Mondays 8:00 p.m.

July 7 – Benjamin Sheen,
St. Thomas Church, New York NY

July 14 – Janet Yieh,
Trinity Church, Wall Street NY

July 21 – Joseph Wozniak,
St. Aloysius Church, Caldwell NJ

July 28 – David Ball,
The Actors’ Chapel, Times Square NY

August 4 – Kristin Dabaghian,
Cathedral Basilica, Newark NJ

Saturday, June 7, 7:30 p.m. &
Sunday, June 8, 7:30 p.m.

Harmonium Choral Society, Anne Matlack, director, presents Sing a New Song, featuring the Bach motet Singet dem Herrn and an eclectic selection of works about singing, including the winners of the 17th annual High School Student Composition Contest. Tickets available from Grace Church, 4 Madison Avenue at Kings Road, Madison, NJ 07940.

Sunday, June 8, 4:30 pm

The St. Catherine of Siena choirs will feature the Requiems of both John Rutter and Gabriel Faure. No admission charge, donations accepted. St. Catherine’s Church, 10 N. Pocono Rd., Mountain Lakes, NJ 07046.

Monday, June 9, 6:00 p.m.


Chapter End-of-Year Soirée with installation of officers. Email Diane Pivarnik at or leave a message at 973-295-6917 to RSVP with your potluck contribution. At the home of Glen Devitt, 534 Parker St., Newark, NJ 07104.

Saturday, June 28, 7:00 p.m.

Cabaret under the Stars with Deborah Fennelly and John Pivarnik, to spearhead organ fund. B.Y.O.B, gourmet hors d’oeuvre included. Tickets in advance $15/person. For tickets call church office at 973-226-6500. Saint Peter’s Episcopal Church, 271 Roseland Ave, Essex Fells, NJ 07021.

Friday, July 11, 8:00 p.m.

Schola Cantorum Summer Sing, Duruflé Requiem, Deborah Simpkin King, Conductor, Preston Dibble, Organist. Church of the Immaculate Conception, 1 Munn St. Montclair, NJ 07042.


The chapter newsletter is The Metro Mixtures and the Newsletter Editor is Chris Hatcher. He can be reached at





Dear fellow organists,
This is my final article as your chapter dean for the past 4 years. At our June soirée we will be installing new chapter officers. It has been an exciting time for our chapter with the very successful and exciting Regional Convention in 2011, chaired by Rives Cassel, obviously being the summit of our chapter in recent years. Additionally, I am pleased the Markey Scholarship Fund is again awarding scholarships. Our chapter has hosted successful RCYO competitions which has brought exciting, new and young talent to the forefront of our field and for some excellent chapter meetings and local gatherings! However, much always remains un-done, including increased participation in guild exams, meaningful connection and dialogue with our clergy brethren and other initiatives I had hoped to make great strides in. It is my hope that the next class of officers will continue to move our chapter and our craft onward and upward!

However, before we get to them, we owe a debt of thanks to those who have served and whose time is ending. Our outgoing class of officers includes Joe Arndt, Eric Olsen and Mary Lou Stevens. Additionally, we owe a huge debt of gratitude to Diane Pivarnik, our outgoing sub-dean, for her energy and passion for our instrument as evidenced in our chapter programs these past two years. Thank you all!

I am most pleased to announce our newly elected officers for 2014! Dean, Jim Little; Sub-Dean, Joe Arndt; Secretary, Eric Fahner; Treasurer, Scott Jones. For the first time in recent memory, we had a tie in our election to the Class of Officers. Since Jim Little is currently one of the class members, once he assumes his role as dean, his seat would be have to be filled. Our by-laws offer no provision for a tie, so, we have decided to place the 4 candidates with the highest number of votes on the Executive Committee. Please welcome our new class: Gretchen Bilson, Kristin Dabaghian, Holland Jancaitis and Matthew Webb. Additionally, the rest of our 2012-2016 class, Brian Harlow and Linda Loria remain on the board. These officers will be installed on June 9 at our soirée.

As I have discussed much in this column in recent months, it is a time of change in our guild: new national officers to be installed in Boston later this month, new chapter officers, a new region for northern NJ and new initiatives. This change will be the lifeblood of our organization so that it may continue to thrive in support of the King of Instruments, our partners as musicians, the organ. I was hooked from the first time I heard it and despite the challenges of making music through and a living from it, I could not imagine life any other way. I say thank you and Soli Deo Gloria!

–Preston Dibble, Dean


What terrific turnout for a WONDERFUL program by Holland Jancaitis at our MMMinMatMMUMCinM. Got all that? Many thanks to him for his hospitality and expert presentation in such a fun and relaxed way! And it’s good to know that there are several other “M’s” for us to explore for next year’s program. Stay tuned! The Program Committee is already hard at work on your behalf! Psssst…the next meeting of the Program Committee will be at 4:30 PM preceding the June Soirée, beginning at 6 PM which will include the Installation of Officers as well as dinner! Glen Devitt’s house at 534 Parker Street is in the Forest Hills section of Newark. Parking is on the street—in front of his policeman neighbor’s house!!! Reservations ARE required! Please RSVP to me with your contribution to our Pot-Luck—appetizer, main dish, salad or dessert. BYOB. You also might want to keep in mind there really IS more to dinner than just dessert—we always seem to have plenty of those!

Please email me at or leave a message at 973-295-6917.

Thanks again to our illustrious Program Committee from this year who planned some great meetings and the Mini-Convention for us! We are fortunate to have such talented and committed members in our ranks who are willing to step up to the plate for the benefit of ALL of us!

–Diane Pivarnik, Sub-Dean


It is time to renew your AGO membership and the new ONCARD system is now active. Thirty-four Metro NJ members have already renewed! Everyone with email should have received a notice from with the subject line “It’s time to renew your AGO membership.” Those without email should receive a hard copy from AGO. You must renew from this invoice.

Renewing will walk you through several screens. Please log in, check and complete the personal and contact info and click “Post changes/Proceed.” Next, select the membership type, your primary chapter and any Dual chapter(s.) Click “Process Changes” and “Proceed to Renew Dues.” Page 3 is a confirmation and allows you to make donations to our George Markey Scholarship Fund and several national funds. Click “Continue to payment.” The final page is for payment, through which you can pay by credit card or print the form and mail it with your check.

Please try to renew in timely fashion (before July 1)—it will help everyone involved. The AGO member year runs from July 1 to June 30.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. Thank you!

–Scott Jones, Treasurer and Membership Chair



From member Ann Lewis: I have a Conn 720 Artist model organ to give away. Still plays well, but is old and has tubes. AGO pedalboard, self contained-great for both classical music and theatre organ. Easy access – no steps to maneuver. ASAP. I also have organ music to give away. Contact Ann Lewis at 973-837-0553. 99 Turnberry Rd. Little Falls, NJ.



We can accept advertisements in the newsletter for goods and services which are for sale. Besides text ads, we can place business card-size ads for inclusion in the Metro Mixtures.Ads may be purchased for $10 (for Metro NJ AGO members), and $20 (for non-members) per issue of Metro Mixtures. Business card ads must be “camera-ready.” Memorial tributes and “best wishes” may also be placed by members for $10 per issue. To place a text ad, send your ad (or business card) along with a check (payable to Metro NJ AGO) to the newsletter editor. Please note that text ads may need to be edited due to space constraints. If you would like more information about placing an ad please contact

Past Dean, Metropolitan New Jersey Chapter


The Membership Chairperson is Scott Jones. You may contact him via e-mail at



The Placement Chairperson is Chris Hatcher. To submit a listing, please contact him via e-mail at

Parish Organist: St. Gabriel’s Roman Catholic Church, 88 East Saddle River Road, Saddle River, NJ 07458. Phone:201-327-5663.
Start Date: September 1, 2014
Scope of Services Required: Organist with piano skills required to play for cantored and choir
Masses and certain additional services, including, where applicable, accompanying the parish
adult choir, all with hymns and anthems selected by Director of Music, in accordance with the
following specifications:
 Weekend Masses: Three weekends per month (5:00 pm Saturday; 10:00 am
and 11:30 am Sunday), two Sundays of which include accompanying the adult
 Holy Week Masses, Services and Rehearsals [Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday
Mass, Good Friday Service, Friday Evening Tenebrae, Easter Vigil, Easter
Sunday (3)].
 Holy Days: Christmas [Vigil (2) and Day (3)]; All Saints Day; Feast of the
Immaculate Conception; Feast of the Assumption; Feast of Mary, Mother of
God [Vigil (1) and Day (2)], Ash Wednesday, Ascension Thursday.
 Parish Mission, Men/Women’s Cornerstone Mass
 All funeral and memorial Masses (compensation at event rate, below).
 Wedding Masses and nuptial ceremonies shared with Director of Music
(compensation at event rate, below).
 Stations of the Cross devotional (Five Friday evenings during Lent).
 Parish Christmas Concert (Early-to-mid December).
 Parish Sacramental Celebrations of Confirmation and First Communion.
 Wedding Music Workshops (Four spread throughout the year).
 Adult choir rehearsals September – May (predominantly Thursday evenings).
Additional Services and Masses: Availability for additional services and Masses as needed,
compensation at event rates, below.
 Proficiency in playing a 3-manual 31-rank pipe organ and familiarity with
Catholic liturgy and traditional hymnody.
 Technical and musical skills to play works of organ literature appropriate for
sacred setting.
 Piano and organ accompanist skills for adult choir, preparing and playing
music selected and conducted by Director of Music in rehearsal, Mass and
 Prepare and play appropriate preludes and postludes for all liturgies and other
works of organ literature for other parish events.
 Supervise and coordinate regular and extraordinary maintenance and tunings
of Kegg organ.
 Coordinate funeral music with Pastoral Associate, rehearsal of soloists and
outside musicians as needed.
 Provide creative, artistic and administrative assistance to director of music as
 Encourage and promote public performance of the Kegg organ to the greater
sacred and secular musical community with recitals, workshops and events.
 Attend all parish staff meetings (monthly).
 Preferred access to sanctuary for practice time.
 Safe environment certified.
 $27,000 per annum (W-2)
 $150 per Additional Service/Event
 $200 per funeral Mass;
 $275 per wedding Mass/Ceremony.
 $125 per rehearsal
 AGO Dues;
 One professional conference per year
 Two weeks’ vacation.
Contact: Joe Scorese, Director of Music, Phone: 201.577.6318
Parish Website: St. Gabriel’s
Organ Specifications: Kegg organ Specs [5/28/2014]

Director of Music /Organist: The Community Church of Mountain Lakes, United Church of Christ, 48 Briarcliff Road, Mountain Lakes, NJ 07046. The Community Church of Mountain Lakes (United Church of Christ) is looking for a motivated individual to serve as Director of Music and Organist.  Responsibilities of the position include: Member of Worship Team responsible for coordinating all music to be used in worship services throughout the year; Rehearsing and directing the Chancel Choir; Organist/pianist for weekly worship services and the special services of the liturgical year; Accompanist for Cherub, Gloria, and Youth Choirs; working collaboratively with Director of Children’s Music and Handbell Choir Director in planning music schedule and rehearsals; wedding and funeral services as they arise.  Chancel choir rehearsals are currently Thursday evening; Worship on Sunday morning is at 10 a.m.  The church has a recently rebuilt Casavant-Freres pipe organ, digitally enhanced with Ahlborn-Galanti electronic voices, and a Steinway grand piano for use during worship. The candidate should be proficient in both organ and piano and willing to provide instrumental, choral and congregational music in a wide variety of musical styles to ensure the worship experience is as inclusive as possible.  Prior experience with handbell choirs a plus.  The successful candidate will receive competitive compensation based on qualifications, time-commitment and experience. ($20,000 – $25,000 +).Mountain Lakes is located in beautiful Morris County, New Jersey, conveniently located near the intersection of Routes 287 and 80. For more information, call the church office at (973) 334-6500. To apply, e-mail your resume, including references, to comchurch@optimum.netRev. Dr. Debra L. Duke, Senior Pastor, Mr. Roy Ronning, Chair, Music Search Team. [3/8/14]

Employers and job seekers are invited to post and search listings of available positions on the Guild’s National Website.



As a chapter, we are committed to the certification process, which can be found in the July Issue of our national ‘house organ’ The American Organist.

We have members who have achieved certification in all of the programs offered, including: Service Playing, Colleague, Choir Master, Associateship and Fellowship. With our location in Central New Jersey, we are sometimes asked to accomodate candidates from surrounding chapters, and do so gladly. Certification chairman is Dennis Dell, 732 750-2960, or via e-mail at


Contact Us

Dean: Preston Dibble -
Sub-Dean: Diane Pivarnik -
Secretary: Eric Fahner -
Treasurer: Scott Jones -
Financial Advisor: Michael Newman
Membership: Scott Jones -
Hospitality: Yvonne Sonnenwald -
Placement: Chris Hatcher – chris.hatcher01[at]
Professional Concerns: Yvonne Sonnenwald -
Newsletter Editor: Chris Hatcher – chris.hatcher01[at]
Publicity: Beverly McGregor -
Exam Coordinator: Dennis Dell -
TAO Events Reporter: Yvonne Sonnenwald -
Chapter Photographer: Beverly McGregor -
Markey Scholarship: Charles Banks
New Organist Committee – Vincent Carr -

Executive Board

Class of 2010-2014
Mary Lou Stevens
Eric Olsen
Joe Arndt

Class of 2012-2016
Brian Harlow
James Little
Linda Loria



AGO National website