Meet the winners of the 2014 National Competition in Organ Improvisation!
The three finalists above, Matthew Koraus, Douglas Murray, and Patrick Scott, were chosen to advance to the final round, which has held June 26, 2014 at St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Boston. Unfortunately, Matthew Koraus found it necessary to withdraw from the final round of the competition. Judging the final round were Edoardo Bellotti, Carson Cooman, and Christa Rakich. Douglas Murray improvised a prelude and fugue on “KING’S WESTON” and a free improvisation inspired by an excerpt from poet John Milton’s “Il Penseroso.” Patrick Scott offered a prelude and fugue on “KING’S WESTON” and a free improvisation based on “The Passage of the Delaware,” Thomas Sully’s famous painting displayed at the Boston Museum of Art. The judges awarded first prize to Patrick Scott and second prize to Douglas Murray, and the audience voted to award its prize to Patrick Scott as well.
The National Competition in Organ Improvisation seeks to further the art of improvisation by recognizing and rewarding superior performance in the field. A flourishing tradition of improvisation is fundamental to a truly vital musical culture.
The competition is open to all organists regardless of age or citizenship. First-place winners of a previous NCOI are not eligible. The NCOI occurs biennially. The competition commences with a recorded Preliminary Round in the autumn of odd years. The Semifinal and Final Rounds take place during the summer of even years, in conjunction with the AGO National Convention.
Prizes: First Place – $3,000, funded by McNeil Robinson; Second Place – $2,000, funded by Dobson Pipe Organ Builders; Third Place – $1,500, funded by Pamela and Steven Ruiter-Feenstra; Audience prize – $1500, funded by David and Robin Arcus. Further details are published in THE AMERICAN ORGANIST. You may also request information from National Headquarters by email, fax, mail or phone.
The 2016 NCOI Application and Rules will be available soon. Please check back!