Saginaw Valley Chapter

Last updated: November 28, 2016 at 16:51 pm

Message from the Dean 

From the Dean—November, 2016

Greetings Everyone:

Here’s to Pumpkins, Colorful Leaves, and Plump Turkeys!

The October Organ Crawl to the Thumb attracted a small-yet-mighty group of people and featured instruments at the United Methodist Church and First Presbyterian Church, Caro, and St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Mayville.  Special thanks to our performers who demonstrated the very best of each of these instruments with their varied programs:  Jim Gladstone, Nancy Reim, Susan Reim, and Nicholas Schmelter.

As you may know, our next program will feature Patti Bowen next Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016, 7:00 Memorial Presbyterian Church, 1310 E. Ashman, Midland.  This is the annual Kent Dennis Recital co-sponsored by the church and our chapter and from which proceeds go to the Kent Dennis Scholarship Fund.  I hope to see many of you there supporting both Patti, our friend and colleague, and the Dennis Scholarship Fund.

No official Chapter event is planned for December, but our next event will be the concert by acclaimed organist Hector Olivera on the campus of Saginaw Valley State University, Jan. 14, 2017, at 7:30 p.m., in the Rhea Miller Recital Hall.  Admission is free.  If you’ve never heard Mr. Olivera perform, this is a must-see, must-hear opportunity!!!

Best wishes for the upcoming Holiday Season!

Steve Egler

Steven Egler, D.M.A.
Professor of Music (Organ)
104 School of Music
Central Michigan University
Mt. Pleasant, MI 49959
Dean, Saginaw Valley Chapter
American Guild of Organists

Programs for 2016-2017 are:

The Kent Dennis Memorial Organ Recital occurred on November 13, 2016
The annual event, sponsored by the Guild and the church, recognizes the commitment of Kent Dennis to the organ community and to the music ministry at the Presbyterian Church.

This year’s recitalist was Patricia Bowen of Midland. Patti is the Principal Organist at Trinity Lutheran Church in Midland and is a retired Bullock Creek music teacher. She holds degrees in music education from Anderson University, IN, and a Master’s Degree in organ performance from Central Michigan University. She has held previous church positions at Westminster Presbyterian Church and Madison Avenue Methodist Church in Bay City and First Baptist Church in Midland. She has been involved with the Saginaw Valley Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, serving two terms as Dean and several terms as a Member-at-Large of the Executive Board.

If you missed Patti’s recital and want to hear/see it, it is now streaming live on the Memorial Presbyterian Church website.

Use the following link and then click on “Archives.” The Kent Dennis Recital is the first event listed.


The chapter has been invited by Saginaw Valley State University to join them for a recital by Hector Olivera, on January 14, 2017, at 7:30 p.m. on campus at the Rhea Miller Recital Hall.


The February program will also be sponsored by another organization. The Guild will visit St. Lorenz Lutheran Church in Frankemuth for their two- harpsichord recital on February 19, 2017, at 4:00 p.m. Soloists are Scott Hyslop and William Randall.


On April 30, 2017, at 4:00 p.m. the program will be at Messiah Lutheran Church in Bay City, MI. Pastor Andreas Teich and Pastor Steven Starke will present a hymn festival of American Folk Tunes. Members of the Guild will serve as organists for the program and will be joined by members of Exultate Deo Chamber Choir.


The final program of the season on July 2, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. at Trinity Episcopal Church in Bay City, MI is the annual Patriotic Program. It will feature members of the Guild as organists and Exultate Deo Chamber Choir performing patriotic hymns, organ and choral music. Installation of A.G.O. officers will take place.

All programs are open to the public free of charge. For more information please check the Saginaw Valley Chapter of the American Guild of Organists Facebook page.

Members of the AGO board include, Steven Egler, Robert Sabourin, Robert Van   Nostrand, Matt Benkert, Adrienne Wiley, Calla Riggenberg and David Hammond.

Local Events

Trinity Episcopal Church in Bay City, The Rev. Susan C. Rich, Rector, announces its
series of Evensongs and music events for the 2016-2017 season.  For more information call 989-892-5813.

Dates for the 2016-2017 season include:

December 18, 2016 at 4:00 p.m.
A Festival of Lessons and Carols
Exultate Deo Chamber Choir
Adrienne Wiley, Organist

January 6, 2017 at 11:30 a.m.
The Feast of the Epiphany
Sung Communion
The Trinity Choir and Guest
English Tea after the Service

January 22, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
Contemplative Evensong
Rayechel Berger, Soprano
Robert Sabourin, Organist

February 26, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
Contemplative Evensong
The Women of the Choir
Robert Sabourin, Organist

March 26, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
Choral Evensong
The Trinity Choir and Guests
Robert Sabourin, Organist

April 9, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
The Music of Holy Week
Exultate Deo Chamber Choir
Steven Egler, Organist

May 21, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
Choral Evensong
The Trinity Choir and Guests
Robert Sabourin, Organist

July 2, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
Patriotic Concert
The Ann Frisby Fitzugh Chapter of the DAR

All programs are open to the pubic free of charge.


Other Events in the State of Michigan

AGOings on in Michigan — Fall 2016 and Winter 2017



Friday. 12/2 – Ann Arbor Chapter. An Organist’s Christmas
First Presbyterian Church, 7:00pm
Contact Ms. Sipkje Pesnichak, Dean.

Tuesday, December 6 – Southwest Michigan Chapter. Members’ Christmas Recital
First Congregational Church, Kalamazoo, 7:00pm
Contact Dr. Stephen G. White, Dean.


Monday, January 9 – Detroit Chapter. Dexter Kennedy III, recitalist
Kirk in the Hills, Bloomfield Hills. RSVP (!) dinner at 7:00pm. Recital at 8:00pm
Contact Dr. Ronald Prowse, Dean.

Saturday, 1/14 – Saginaw Valley Chapter. Hector Olivera in recital
Rhea Miller Recital Hall, GVSU. Time TBA
Contact Dr. Steven L. Egler, Dean.

Monday, 1/16 – Grand Rapids Chapter. Wedding Music
Central Reformed Church, 6:30pm.
Contact Peter T. Kurdziel, Dean.


Saturday, February 18 – Muskegon Lakeshore Chapter. Ringing in the Round
First Lutheran, North Muskegon. Time TBA
Contact Maryanne C. Beery, Dean.

Sunday, February 19 – Greater Lansing Chapter – Pops Concert
First UMC, Lansing 3:00pm
Contact Barbara Hiranpradist, Dean.

Sunday, February 19 – Saginaw Valley Chapter – Two-harpsichord recital, Scott Hyslop & William Randal
St. Lorenz Lutheran Church, Frankenmuth, 4:00pm
Contact Dr. Steven L. Egler, Dean.


Other Events Outside the State of Michigan

The January Jubilee is coming to LaGrange, Illinois on Saturday January 28 and is an all-day event with five-double tracks of practical workshops for organists, choir directors, and handbell directors. There will be ten sessions—two sessions being held simultaneously.  Each is taught by an expert in his/her area.  Those attending will have to make a choice of which workshop he/she will attend.  You and your members will be getting a mailed brochure in the next week or two (they are sent “bulk rate”) that has specifics of the workshops and the registration form.  Our January Jubilee will be held from 8 am until 4 pm at the very beautiful Emmanuel Episcopal Church 203 S. Kensington Avenue in LaGrange, IL.

The only cost for folks attending this day-long event is $20 which includes refreshments and a catered lunch, and some free music. That is the “early bird” special if paid by January 10.  (After that the fee is $30.  Students get a bargain—$10—but only if paid early.)  That fee is deliberately low—in order to attract area musicians who might not already be AGO members.  (We do hope to attract some new AGO members.  But our main goal is to increase the skill levels of church musicians.)  More details will follow.





Join the chapter’s Facebook

Other communications are sent via e-mail from chapter leadership.



Please visit the AGO national website at for detailed membership information.


Consider involving yourself in and with chapter happenings. Contact a chapter leader to volunteer. Do you have other talents to contribute with your colleagues?

– Participate in chapter programs.
– Serve the chapter’s Nominating Committee.
– Become active with the volunteer leadership board.
– Take an active role supporting new organists by serving the Scholarship Committee.
– Function in a role of hospitality at chapter events.
– Suggest program ideas to the Sub-Dean.
– Practice each day.



Employers and job seekers are invited to post and search listings of available positions on the Guild’s National Website.

Job Posting

At this time there are no known open postings in the local area. When we are made aware of postings and have reviewed them, they will be posted here for a short time.

Contact Us

Steven Egler, D.M.A.
Professor of Music (Organ)
104 School of Music
Central Michigan University
Mt. Pleasant, MI 49959
Dean, Saginaw Valley Chapter
American Guild of Organists

Members of the AGO board include, Steven Egler, Robert Sabourin, Robert Van   Nostrand, Matt Benkert, Adrienne Wiley, Calla Riggenberg and David Hammond.


The prestigious Royal Canadian College of Organists.
England’s own Royal College of Organists.
The official website of the Organ Historical Society.
An indispensable, comprehensive site for anyone with a penchant for organ stop trivia.
Scores and midi files for an impressive collection of hymns.
A “virtual” trek through the great organ locations of Britain.
The Web home of renowned Canadian organ builder Casavant Freres.

AGO National website