Metropolitan New Jersey Chapter


Last updated: April 25, 2019 at 15:18 pm

Message from the Dean 

Thank you for your interest in the Metropolitan New Jersey Chapter of the American Guild of Organists!  We are a diverse group of people, including church musicians, concert artists, students, teachers, organ enthusiasts, and music lovers.  We value performance, promote education, and enjoy social activities, as well as host AGO Professional Certification exams, provide scholarships for young organists, and host regional competitions for rising stars of the organ.

 We hope that you might join us at one of our many chapter events, especially our Mini-Convention, held each year on MLK Day in January.  Whether you live in New Jersey or the metro New York City area or anywhere else throughout the world, we welcome you to follow us as we promote the organ, encourage the organists in our area, and bring attention to the many wonderful instruments in our area.  If you wish to join our chapter, please feel free to contact me or our membership chair.


* * CHAPTER PROGRAMS 2018-19 * *

Tuesday, November 27, 2018 7:30 p.m. – Members’ Recital at St. Vincent Martyr Church, 26 Green Village Rd., Madison, NJ  07940. Parking available behind the church. Reception in the rectory following the recital.

Monday, February 25,  7:30 pm – Organ Workshop—Dr. Ezekiel Menéndez
St. Cassian Church, 187 Bellevue Ave., Upper Montclair, NJ   07043
Free to Metro AGO members

This program is shared with Metro NJ AGO, the Newark Chapter of NPM and the Organ Dept. at MSU. Dr. Menéndez will present a brief survey of organ music by Latin American composers and conduct a short masterclass on the organ sonatas of Felix Mendelssohn. Dr. Menéndez is organist at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford, CT.

Monday, May 13, 12:00 noon – Metro Mid-day Munch in May
Grace Church, 200 Highfield Lane, Nutley, NJ 07110
Recital and $8.00 optional lunch

Randall Svane, organist and host

Member Randy Svane is excited to play a 30-40 minute program to share improvements and additions to the church’s 1926 Austin. The organ has a new digital console with 120 memory levels. Emery Brothers removed all the pipework last summer and brought it back to the factory where they cleaned, repaired and restored all pipes.  The instrument has been re-voiced.

Friday, June 14,  5:00 pm (Flag Day) – Soirée in Mendham

Potluck dinner and social
Preston and Mary Dibble, Mendham, NJ 07945

The Dibbles have moved to a multi-acre property in Mendham and we are invited for a Flag Day celebration. Please bring a dish to share. Details to follow.



Submit concert listings to Patricia Woolley, newsletter editor –

Saturday, February 23, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Ryan Kennedy, organist in concert playing works by Vierne, Bach, Schumann, Duruflé, Mendelssohn-Bartholdy and Kennedy.
Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church, 315 First St., Westfield, NJ – 908-232-8137
General admission $10.00,  under 18 free
For further information visit, .

Saturday, March 2, 2019 at 7:30 and Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 3 p.m.
The Harmonium Chamber Singers will perform “Swan Songs” exploring both its senses: final thoughts on life well-lived, and a celebration of birds and nature through the music of Arcadelt, Monteverdi, Schütz, Rimkus, Quartel, former Harmonium Composition Contest winner Michael Rosin, and more.  The Chamber Singers will premiere works by Harmonium’s composer-in-residence Martin Sedek, and Dale Trumbore’s Open/Close Choral Consortium, and also perform Hindemith’s Six Chansons on poems by Rilke.
Grace Episcopal Church – Saturday, March 2, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
4 Madison Ave, Madison NJ 07940
Christ Church in Short Hills – Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 3:00 p.m. 
66 Highland Ave., Short Hills, NJ 07078
General admission tickets $25 ($20 students & seniors), purchased on/before March 1,
$20 ($15 students & seniors). –  973-538-6969 for tickets; for event information.

Sunday, March 10, 2019 at 3:00 p.m.
Glen Ridge Community Concerts presents Viola Virtuoso, Brett Deubner.
Violist Brett Deubner has performed as a concerto soloist with over 70 orchestras in eleven countries on five continents. He is featured on more than a dozen recordings, and has had over 85 works written for him. This concert will feature works for viola and piano. As a teacher, Brett is dedicated to helping his students learn to believe in themselves and to attain their dreams. On the web at
Glen Ridge Congregational Church
195 Ridgewood Ave., Glen Ridge, NJ 07028. 973-743-5596 x26.
Admission: $20 Adults; $15 Seniors; $10 Students

Sunday, March 10 at 3:00 p.m. 
Music Director Eric Olsen and Union Church’s Sanctuary Choir present The Music of Eric Olsen, featuring original sacred choral anthems, secular songs, and instrumental works for violin, piano, organ, and jazz band, including Mr. Olsen’s monumental Choral Fugue on the Hymn Tune Mendlessohn for flute, clarinet, violin, and piano. New organ works by Mr. Olsen will also be featured.
Union Congregational Church, 176 Cooper Avenue, Montclair, NJ  –  973 744-7424
Free-Will Offering for the Music Program

March 8 through April 12, 2019 at 12:15 p.m.
Grace Community Music presents lunchtime Friday Lenten Organ meditations every Friday throughout Lent at 12:15. ending at 12:45.  Pedals and keyboard projected for viewing!   $7 lunch availble from Slamwich The concerts are free and open to the public.
   March 8 –  Annual visit from the music students of Pingry School.
   March 15 – Christopher Jennings plays American composers.
   March 22-  Jeff Clearman presents a potpourri of German, French, English, and American Lenten music.
   March 29Helen E.J.Thomas Memorial Concert, presented by Patricia Ruggle, alto and Anne Matlack, organist; featuring arias from Bach’s St. Matthew Passion.
   April 5 – Kevin Davis performs works ranging from Buxtehude to Pinkham.
   April 12 – Dr. Anne Matlack presents a Family-Friendly Meet-the-Organ program appropriate for children
of all ages
  ~  Compline chanted by candlelight in the choir stalls Thursdays in Lent 8:45-9 p.m. March 7- April 11. ~
Grace Church
4 Main St. (Rt. 124) at the corner of Kings Rd. and Route 124, Madison, NJ 07940; 973-377-0106 extension 17

Sunday, March 17, 2019 at 4:00 p.m.
The New Jersey Wind Symphony – Christian Wilhjelm, conductor.  Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the NJWS (formerly the Ridgewood Concert Band) at an afternoon concert featuring renowned fiddler Haley Richardson.  The program includes time-honored works featuring the NJWS and the Cathedral Basilica’s Schantz 154 rank / 9,513 pipe organ played by the Director of Music Ministries, John J. Miller:  Irish Tune from County Derry; Highlights from “Riverdance” – Bill Whelan; Appalachian Spring – Aaron Copland; Polka and Fugue from “Schwanda the Bagpiper” – Jaromir Weinberger.  Learn more about the New Jersey Wind Symphony at:
Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart, 89 Ridge Street, Newark, NJ – 973-484-2400
Suggested donation – $15

Sunday, March 31, 2019 at 3:00 p.m.
Organ Recital by Christopher Jennings, organist
Central Presbyterian Church
70 Maple Street, Summit NJ 09701

Free with a reception to follow. 

Sunday, April 7, 2019 at 1:30 p.m.
Harmonium Choral Society, Anne Matlack, Director, presents Bach’s St. Matthew Passion. This gala production features the vibrant New York Times darlings The Sebastians as the double baroque orchestra, Grammy-winning Dann Coakwell as Evangelist, and members of the New Jersey Youth Chorus as the children’s choir. The performance also brings New York and New Jersey’s finest professional soloists to Morristown, including Grammy-nominated Stephen Sands (“a tenor with a focused, powerful tone” who sings with “subtlety” and “poignancy” – The New York Times); award-winning musical theater and classical artist Michael Maliakel (“a baritone so tender your eyes well” – San Francisco Chronicle); Elena Bird (“…her clear soprano soared through the night air” – NJ Arts Maven); alto Patricia Ruggles (“her warm, luscious mezzo…carried the emotion of the text” – Classical NJ); and baritone Malcolm Merriweather as Jesus (described as “gripping” and compelling by Opera News).
St. Mary’s Abbey at Delbarton, 230 Mendham Rd. Morristown, NJ 07960.
For more information:

Sunday, April 7, 2019 at 3:00 p.m.
Glen Ridge Choral Society & Chamber Orchestra: Music of Light and Peace
Glen Ridge Community Concerts presents Music of Light and Peace, featuring the Requiem for the Living by Dan Forrest, along with other works for voices and instruments. Thomas Mustachio, conductor.
Glen Ridge Congregational Church
195 Ridgewood Ave., Glen Ridge, NJ 07028. 973-743-5596 x26.
Admission: $20 Adults; $15 Seniors; $10 Students

Friday, April 26, 2019 at 8:00 p.m.
New Jersey Symphony Orchestra – Music for Organ and Orchestra featuring the famous ‘Organ Symphony’ of Camille Saint-Saëns, Xian Zhang, conductor.  Program includes Final alla Schumann – Alexandre Guilmant, Symphony No. 40 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Symphony No. 3, ‘Organ Symphony’ – Camille Saint-Saëns with Cathedral Basilica organist, John J. Miller.
Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart, 89 Ridge Street, Newark, NJ – 973-484-2400
Preferred Seating  $40 plus $2 shipping & handling; General Admission – $30 plus $2 shipping & handling
Advance ticket purchase recommended at

Tuesday, April 30, 2019 7:30 p.m.
Chamber Music for Charity benefits Home Sharing.
Merynda Adams, harp, Christopher Collins Lee, violin.
Grace Church
4 Madison Ave, Madison NJ 07940
Donation at door.

Saturday, June 8, 2019 and Sunday, June 9, 2019 7:30 p.m.
Harmonium Choral Society 1000 Beautiful Things  
Eclectic and uplifting selections from Annie Lennox to Palestrina, including Esenwald’s Only in Sleep, Gjeilo’s Unicornis Captivatur with the winner of the 22nd annual High School Student Composition Contest.  Tickets available at .
Grace Church
4 Madison Ave, Madison NJ 07940

Saturday, July 13 2019 7:30 p.m.
Broadway Cabaret Fundraiser for Harmonium Choral Society.  Tickets available at .
Grace Church
4 Madison Ave, Madison NJ 07940

October 2015 




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



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


Director of Music

Rutherford Congregational Church is seeking a Director of Music to lead our open and affirming congregation with a musical ministry that enriches and deepens our worship services! This is a part-time position requiring a commitment of 15-20 hours per week. The anticipated start date is May 1, 2019.

The Director of Music will be an accomplished organist and choir director who will seek out music that will add diversity of culture and style to our worship.  The successful candidate will be self directed and bring spirituality, creativity, and enthusiasm while closely collaborating with our Pastor in crafting worship services.

We are seeking a person who will continue to cultivate our Christian Spirit through acceptance and openness as well as share a warm and welcoming sense of fellowship and hospitality. To get a better sense of our congregation and church community, please visit our Facebook page,

Primary Responsibilities

Oversee the music program of the church, and to serve as organist and adult choir director, look for different forms of music to bring variety to our programming.

Work with the Pastor and other church staff to plan and prepare meaningful worship services which will deepen the worship experience for the congregation.

Lead, rehearse, direct, and recruit for the volunteer adult choir for weekly Sunday worship at 10:30 am, rehearsing one hour prior to worship and one evening a month, September through June. Identify, recruit, and practice with instrumental or vocal soloists for summer services if available, and with members of the congregation who offer instrumental or vocal solos during the whole year.

Provide hymn and choral accompaniments for all Sunday services, including summer services at 9:30 am, and other special services (examples: Christmas pageant, Christmas Eve, Maundy Thursday, Easter, etc.). Occasionally rehearsing with Sunday School children for special services. Although at present the church does not have a youth choir, the church has had one in years past, and if we do have one in the future, we would want our Director of Music to lead it and select appropriate music.

Encourage and engage congregational participation in all aspects of the church music program.

Maintain choral library and order new music as needed. Obtain necessary copyright permissions for music not in the public domain.

Engage additional professional musicians as needed in collaboration with the Pastor and Worship Planning Team.

Keep Worship Implementation Team apprised of conditions of the organ and pianos, and work with the Worship Implementation Team to schedule repairs and tuning.

Additional compensation opportunities are available with the right of first refusal in regard to providing organ music at all weddings and funerals within the sanctuary. The services of other organists may be used with the permission of the Director of Music.

During the term of the Director of Music’s contract, the incumbent is authorized to give private music lessons in the church when the church is not otherwise in use.

Reports to Pastor and Staff Relations Committee, with a dotted line to the Pastor.

Meets with the Pastor regularly.

Function as a flexible member of the church staff, attending church staff meetings, and communicating service music to the Office Administrator on a weekly basis for the timely inclusion of service music into the weekly bulletin.

Attributes and Talents

Creativity in various genres of music, including traditional/classic and contemporary music. Knowledge of sacred music. Experience with the flow of a church service and familiarity with the liturgical calendar. Ability to regularly suggest appropriate music for the liturgy/sermon topic provided in advance by the Pastor. Rutherford Congregational Church uses the New Century Hymnal and Sing! Prayer and Praise.

Demonstrated proficiency in organ and piano.

Preferred qualifications include skill in instruments beyond organ/piano, possibly including voice. Experience with voice coaching and youth choir helpful but not required.

Excellent communication and collaborative skills.


Salary $16,000-18,000 annually, payable on the 15th and last day of each month.

Paid vacation: 2 weeks.

Sick Pay as required by the State of New Jersey

To Apply:

Please send your résumé, a cover letter explaining why you are seeking this position and how it fits in with your other employment/career plans to, Attention Director of Music Search Committee. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.



Organist Needed – Asian Indian Christian Church (AICC)

AICC, located in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey is a multi-ethnic congregation with the congregational members drawn primarily from India. The service is in English and offers a blended worship style of traditional hymns and contemporary songs to the worshipping community. Sunday worship service is at 9AM and 10:30AM.

This is a part-time position with the person available for Sunday morning worship service and other special services throughout the year. The position carries with it an opportunity for growth such as help with the adult and children’s choir.

The person will work closely with the pastor in selecting hymns for congregational singing so that music is in line with the worship theme. She/he will be responsible for playing service music for Sunday morning service (prelude, postlude, hymns, doxology and benediction).

Compensation: Negotiable

Resumes welcome; please email to:

Rev. Kamalesh Stephen
Pastor, Asian Indian Christian Church
172, Springfield Avenue
Berkeley Heights, NJ 07922
(610) 389-3863



Organist Needed

St. John’s Episcopal Church is a seasonal chapel in Avon-by-the-Sea, NJ.  We are in need of securing an organist to play during our 9:00 am Sunday services from June 23rd to September 1st.  The salary is negotiable based on experience.  Please contact Sarah Sibbald at 202.494.4890 or for additional information.  Thank you.


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 accommodate candidates from surrounding chapters, and do so gladly. Certification chairman is Vince Carr. Contact him via e-mail at


Contact Us

Dean: Kristin Dabaghian –
Sub-Dean: Preston Dibble –
Secretary: Eric Fahner –
Treasurer: Scott Jones –
Financial Advisor: Michael Newman –
Membership/Directory: Scott Jones –
Placement: Chris Hatcher –
Newsletter Editor: Patricia Woolley –
Publicity/Photographer: Beverly McGregor –
TAO Events Reporter: Beverly McGregor –
New Organist Committee: Vincent Carr –
Markey Scholarship: Linda Loria –
Exam Coordinator: Vincent Carr –
Executive Board
Class of 2016-2020
Kathie Hegarty
Linda Loria
Joel Ramseyer

Class of 2018-2022
Tiffany Chung
Carol Johnson
Richard Mack



AGO National website