AGO’S Highest and Most Prestigious Awards Bestowed at National Convention

The American Guild of Organists bestowed its two highest awards of national distinction in conjunction with the 53rd biennial AGO National Convention in Houston, TX. Award presentations were made during the Guild’s Annual Meeting. AGO President John Walker made the presentation to Frederick Haas, and at Walker’s request, Jeffrey Hoover made the presentation to Robert Bennett because of Hoover’s long association with the award recipient. The AGO President’s Award was presented to Frederick R. Haas of Philadelphia, PA. The prestigious award, created in 1988, is presented biennially to recognize outstanding contributions to the art of the organ in the United States. The 2016 President’s Award was given to Haas “in gratitude for his inspired … [Read more...]

AGO Elects 2016-2018 National Council and Regional Councilors

On July 1, 2016, four newly elected officers, three national councillors with portfolio, and seven regional councillors begin their two-year term of leadership on the National Council and Board of Regional Councillors of the American Guild of Organists (AGO). Election results were reported and councillors were installed on Wednesday, June 22, during the AGO Annual Meeting held in conjunction with the AGO National Convention in Houston, TX. In addition, in accordance with AGO Bylaws, AGO Past President John Walker will remain on the Council as a non-voting member for a period of one year. The non-voting AGO Executive Director also serves as an ex officio member of Council. Election results follow: National Council President: Michael … [Read more...]

Silent Auction Raises Funds for the AGO Annual Fund

The 2016 AGO Silent Auction raised more than $20,000 for the AGO Annual Fund. We extend our heartfelt thanks to our donors who contributed 129 auction items and to the 130 bidders that participated in the auction. A set of chorale-preludes and CDs by Paul Manz donated by MorningStar Music and a two-year subscription donated by Choir & Organ received the highest number of bids, while a hymn festival donated by John Walker raised the most revenue. … [Read more...]

AGO Elects 2016 National Council and Regional Councillors

Four newly elected officers, three national councillors with portfolio, and seven regional councillors have begun their two-year term of leadership on the National Council and Board of Regional Councillors of the American Guild of Organists. Election results were reported and councillors were installed on Wednesday, June 22, during the AGO Annual Meeting held in conjunction with the AGO National Convention in Houston, TX. In addition, in accordance with AGO Bylaws, AGO Past President John Walker will remain on the Council as a non-voting member for a period of one year. The non-voting AGO Executive Director also serves as an ex officio member of Council. Here are the election results: National Council President Michael Bedford, AAGO, … [Read more...]

Ronald G. Pogorzelski and Lester D. Yankee Annual Competition Deadline is August 31, 2016

The 2018 competition rules call for a proposal for a commission of a piece 10-12 minutes in length playable on the Pogorzelski-Yankee Organ; there are no restrictions in regard to compositional style. The application deadline is August 31st, 2016. The winning composition will be given its world premier performance in a formal recital at Indiana University of Pennsylvania by an internationally recognized organist. The 2016 winning piece, Claude Baker’s Sept Hommages, was premiered Sunday March 13, 2016. Before the recital, Dr. Baker participated in a half-hour interview with Dr. John Levey, who teaches composition at IUP. He spoke about his music, commented on the composition of Sept Hommages, and took questions from the … [Read more...]

Houston Convention Ends on a High Note

The 53rd biennial National Convention of the AGO ended on a high note on Thursday, June 23rd. A very high note. The evening opened with a greeting from the International Space Station astronaut Jeff Williams. Also featured in the program from St. Martin's Episcopal Church was Hans Zimmer's Cornfield Chase from the movie Interstellar. Over the course of the 5-day event 1,200 attendees were busy from early morning through the closing of the Exhibit Hall at midnight. A large number of enthusiastic young organists brought a special energy to the convention. A reception on Sunday night in outgoing president John Walker’s suite for AGOYO (AGO Young Organists) members was jam-packed. Finalists in both the NCOI (National Competition in … [Read more...]

Houston 2016 Convention — Wednesday June 22nd

Recitals continue throughout the day. Regional meetings will be held at 8:15 am at the Hilton Americas. These meetings give members the opportunity to meet with the Regional Councilor for their region. At 9:30 am the National AGO meeting will be held. The Choir of St. Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue, New York City, performs at 8:30 at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart. … [Read more...]

Houston 2016 Convention – Tuesday June 21

Recitals and Workshops continue throughout the day. NCOI (National Competition in Organ Improvisation) finals will be held from 8:30 to 11:30 am at Christ Church Cathedral. A Hymn Festival with David Cherwin takes place at St. Luke's United Methodist Church at 4:00 pm. … [Read more...]

Houston 2016 Convention — Thursday June 23rd

The final day of the convention features a full morning of workshops. The afternoon features recitals by Ars Lyrica Houston, Joby Bell, and Diane Belcher at various locations. You won't want to miss the AGO Rising Stars' performance of Bayoubüchlein at Co-Cathedral of Sacred Heart. An Evening Extravaganza and Closing Reception at St. Martin's Episcopal Church close out the day's activities. … [Read more...]

Houston 2016 Convention – Monday June 20

Monday is the first full day of activities. Recitals and workshops are held throughout the day. Rising Stars from each of the AGO's seven regions perform at 9:00 am at St. Thomas Episcopal Church. The AGO Professional Certification Reception will be held at 5:30 pm at the Hilton Americas. In the evening the first of two concerts at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart will be held. Michel Bouvard performs "Power Dance," a commissioned work by Joan Tower. The concert will be live-streamed and can be watched at https://www.agohq.org/live … [Read more...]