November 2014 TAO Feature Article

DAHLGREN CHAPEL, GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY WASHINGTON, D.C. SCHOENSTEIN & CO. SAN FRANCISCO, CA In the heart of Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., stands Dahlgren Chapel of the Sacred Heart, built in 1893 and the gift of Sarah Dahlgren, whose husband was Admiral John Dahlgren. The Jesuit religious community that founded the university takes great pride in this chapel, which is the spiritual gathering place for Roman Catholic liturgies on the campus. In 2011, a renovation was launched to reinforce the chapel’s structural foundation and to preserve and enhance both its interior and exterior. The blessing of the renovated chapel took place in April 2014. I was pleased to serve as consultant in this project, assisting the … [Read more...]

2014 Silent Auction Results

The 2014 AGO Silent Auction has drawn to a close and has generated approximately $22,000 for the AGO Annual Fund. We extend our heartfelt thanks to the 84 donors who contributed 116 auction items, and to the 191 bidders who cast 572 unique bids in the auction. The auction item that received the highest number of bids was a registration for the 2016 AGO National Convention in Houston, and the highest bid was a recital by John Walker! You can see more results at Bidding For Good  … [Read more...]

AGO Bestows Highest and Most Prestigous Awards at National Convention

The American Guild of Organists bestowed its two highest awards of national distinction in conjunction with the 52nd biennial AGO National Convention in Boston, Mass. Award presentations were made by AGO President Eileen Guenther during the AGO Annual Meeting. The AGO President’s Award was presented to Christoph Wolff of Belmont, Mass. The prestigious award, created in 1988, is presented biennially to recognize outstanding contributions to the art of the organ in the United States. The 2014 President’s Award recognized Mr. Wolff “in gratitude for his exhaustive musicological research, extensive publications, and lifelong commitment to the music of Johann Sebastian Bach.” Past recipients of the AGO President’s Award include: Clementine … [Read more...]

John C. Walker Elected President of the American Guild of Organists

The American Guild of Organists (AGO), the world’s largest professional association of organists and choral conductors, as well as the largest organization on the globe dedicated to a single musical instrument, has elected John C. Walker as its president. The membership of the AGO includes approximately 17,000 organists, choral conductors, music educators, organbuilders, clergy, and aficionados. In speaking of his election, President Walker remarked: “As a lifelong member of the AGO, it is both a thrill and a humbling responsibility to be chosen by my peers to lead this great organization. As the 31st President in the 118 year history of the Guild, I am honored to walk in the steps of illustrious predecessors. During this era of … [Read more...]

AGO Names Prizewinners in National Organ Competitions

The American Guild of Organists (AGO) is pleased to announce the results of its National Young Artists Competition in Organ Performance (NYACOP) and the National Competition in Organ Improvisation (NCOI). Competition prizewinners were recognized at the 52nd biennial AGO National Convention in Boston, Mass. The following competition prizes were awarded: NATIONAL YOUNG ARTISTS COMPETITION IN ORGAN PERFORMANCE First Prize—Jonathan Rudy The Lilian Murtagh Memorial Prize: $3,000 cash award and career development assistance provided by Karen McFarlane Artists; a CD recording by Pro Organo; and a performance at the 2016 AGO National Convention in Houston, TX. Second Prize—HyeHyun Sung $3,000 cash award provided by John-Paul Buzard Pipe … [Read more...]

AGO Recognizes Two Award Winning Composers

Distinguished Composer Award Presented to Libby Larsen AGO/ECS Publishing Award in Choral Composition Presented to Ivan Božičević The American Guild of Organists (AGO) honored two award winning composers at its Annual Meeting on Tuesday, June 24, during the AGO National Convention in Boston, Mass. AGO President Eileen Guenther presided over the award presentations to Libby Larsen of Minneapolis, MN; and to Ivan Božičević of Croatia. The 2014 Distinguished Composer Award was presented to Libby Larsen ( The prestigious award, created in 1986, is presented biennially to recognize outstanding composers of organ and choral music in the United States. Previous award recipients include: Virgil Thomson, Ned Rorem, Daniel … [Read more...]

AGO Elects 2014–2016 National Council and Regional Councillors

NEW YORK CITY—The AMERICAN GUILD OF ORGANISTS (AGO) announces a newly elected National Council for a term of two years, July 1, 2014–June 30, 2016. Election results were reported on Tuesday, June 24, during the AGO Annual Meeting, held in conjunction with the AGO National Convention in Boston, Mass. Members of the newly elected National Council include four national officers and three national councillors with portfolio. In addition, in accordance with AGO Bylaws, AGO Past President Eileen Guenther will remain on the Council as a non-voting member for a period of one year. The non-voting AGO Executive Director serves as an ex officio member of Council. PRESIDENT John Walker, FAGO, DMA, Baltimore, Md. VICE PRESIDENT / COUNCILLOR FOR … [Read more...]

Charles Callahn Honored by American Guild of Organists at Saint Louis Gala

The American Guild of Organists (AGO) presented its eleventh annual Recital and Gala Benefit Reception on Friday, April 25, at the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis in St. Louis, Mo. An estimated audience of 250 friends and colleagues came together to celebrate the lifetime achievements of Charles Callahan at his St. Louis recital. Dr. Callahan was given the AGO Endowment Fund Distinguished Artist Award “for his distinguished career as a composer, performer, teacher, and consultant, and his lifelong service to the sacred music profession.” The gala was sponsored by the AGO National Council and its Development Committee. Major funding was provided by Christopher Babcock, LTCL. Additional support was provided by the Cathedral Basilica of … [Read more...]

Charles Callahan to be Honored at AGO Recital and Gala Benefit Reception in St. Louis

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: March 3, 2014 212-870-2311, ext. 4308 Celebration of His Lifetime Achievements Will Benefit the AGO Endowment Fund NEW YORK CITY — The American Guild of Organists (AGO) will sponsor a Recital and Gala Benefit Reception honoring award-winning organist and composer Charles Callahan on Friday, April 25, 2014, at 7:00 p.m., at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis in St. Louis, Mo. Mr. Callahan will perform a solo recital featuring works by American composers. The gala benefit reception will follow at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel. The Recital is free and open to the public. Gala Benefit Reception Tickets are $125 ($100 tax deductible) and can be purchased online at … [Read more...]

$2.5 Million Gift Enables AGO to Enrich Lives Through Organ Music

Largest Bequest in the History of the AGO Establishes Endowments for College Scholarship Program, Organ Composition Competition, and Organ Fund to Maintain Tracker Pipe Organ New York City - The American Guild of Organists (AGO) is spearheading three major initiatives that have been made possible by the largest bequest in Guild history. Totaling more than $2.5 million in cash and assets including a tracker pipe organ, the bequest from the estate of Ronald G. Pogorzelski and Lester D. Yankee was first announced at the 2010 AGO National Convention in Washington, D.C. With the gradual distribution of the assets over the last three and a half years, the Guild has worked diligently and faithfully to honor the donors’ intentions by … [Read more...]