January 2015 TAO Feature Article

Zion Lutheran Church of the City of Baltimore is located directly across the square from City Hall, just a short walk from the celebrated Inner Harbor. This historic German congregation was founded in 1755 and obtained its first instrument from the celebrated Pennsylvania organbuilder David Tannenberg, who was paid £375, or $600 in “Pennsylvanisch money”—roughly three times the pastor’s annual salary. The original receipt survives today. Regrettably, the Tannenberg instrument was lost to a fire in March 1840 and was replaced with a Henry Knauff instrument of two manuals and 30 stops, which was rebuilt in 1924 by M.P. Möller. In 1959, a new Möller of three manuals and 29 ranks was installed in the newly built west gallery chambers. … [Read more...]

Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Magazine Features Pogorzelski-Yankee Organ Installation

The Fall-Winter 2014 issue of IUP Magazine features an article on the installation of the Pogorzelski-Yankee Organ on campus. Ever since the organ program began at Indiana State Normal School under Mary Hays Dill in the 1880s, the school has relied on the generosity of local churches for access to organs for teaching and performance. Read the full article, including a video of the installation, of this organ that is, in the words of Christine Clewell, assistant professor of organ, "as original as a Mona Lisa." Pipe Dream … [Read more...]

December 2014 TAO Chapter News–Southeast Region

Miami, FL September 21, “Voluntaries Rediscovered” was performed at Trinity Cathedral by ten members of the chapter, who enjoyed the opportunity to play on the large organ in a superb acoustic. Composers represented were Bach, Mendelssohn, Gigout, C.S. Lang, and Jehan Alain. In recognition of Wilbur Held’s 100th birthday, Betty Rice (former dean), played his setting of “Simple Gifts.” More contemporary works were provided by Mark Jones (dual member from Pompano) and Frederick Kent (former Miami dean), who played their own compositions. Following the organ program, all were invited to Cathedral Hall for a convivial gathering. A three-course meal was prepared and served by Empowered Youth, a program sponsored by a local chef. The Very … [Read more...]

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 2014 TAO 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 5, 2015

Submissions for the 2015-16 Pogorzelski-Yankee Scholarship Awards will begin January 5th 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 January 5, 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...]