Wilmington Chapter

Last updated: November 9, 2018 at 11:08 am

Message from the Dean 

Greetings from the Wilmington (North Carolina) Chapter! Founded in 1989, the Wilmington Chapter currently has a growing membership. While the majority of its members live in the greater Wilmington area, the chapter spans a large geographic area that includes southeastern North Carolina and portions of eastern North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina. The Chapter meets monthly September through June. Each meeting includes a program which often is a concert performed by chapter members for the community, a lecture on a topic of interest or a guest artist recital. Many meetings feature a catered meal. The Wilmington chapter prides itself on presenting many concerts and events for the greater community. Many years, chapter members present a Hymn Festival for the Church Year, and a members’ organ recital. Chapter members also form the AGO Chamber Choir which performs a concert of the works of a major composer many years with chamber orchestra. The 2010 choral concert featured works of Benjamin Britten. Historic Wilmington, North Carolina, is located on the Southeastern coast of North Carolina and is home to many fine pipe organs. Builders represented include Austin, Bozeman, Casavant, Estey, Goulding & Wood, Noack, Pilcher, Schantz, E. M. Skinner, Taylor and Boody, and Visser-Rowland. For more information on the Wilmington Chapter, please contact Sara Bryant, Dean, at sara.w.bryant@gmail.com.



Greetings from the Dean

Dear Friends,

I don’t think any of us were unaffected by Hurricane Florence. Many churches sustained damage, and many, many homes were damaged, including some of yours. At the Basilica Shrine of St. Mary where I work, we had bad leaks in the roof of the Tileston building, where there are upper school classrooms, offices, and meeting rooms. Right now the lower school building cafeteria has three middle school classes meeting in it, separated by partitions. The church staff is mostly working from home, waiting for an office trailer. I am holding choir rehearsals at my house. All of these things will pass and can be repaired. I hope that is true of the place where you are.

For the second year in a row, our September social had to be canceled due to an approaching hurricane. Hurricane Florence also caused our planned concert, Pedals and Pals, to be canceled. We had planned this concert for June 2. The Wilmington Symphony Orchestra scheduled their postponed September concert for exactly the same time, and your executive board decided not to conflict with them. We are now thinking about having a meeting sometime in May, perhaps an anthem-sharing session and social. We will discuss this at our November meeting.

I am excited about our November program! Our presenter will be Dr. Helena Kopchick Spencer, who joined the UNCW music faculty in 2014. Helena is a bassoonist and a musicologist, and she has presented programs all over the world. I have heard Helena speak, and she is absolutely fascinating. She is one of these wonderful musicians who knows about a lot of gorgeous music that I have never heard of. I was very happy when Helena agreed to speak to us. Her program for us will be about Nadia Boulanger, an organist/composer/conductor who taught many of the leading composers of the twentieth century, including Aaron Copland. Boulanger helped get Copland his first big commission from Koussevitzky—an organ concerto that she premiered.

Our meeting will be on Tuesday, November 27 at St. John’s Episcopal Church at 1219 Forest Hills Drive. We will begin with dinner at 6:30, followed by a short business meeting and our program. Dinner is $12.00, and reservations should be made by Friday, November 23. Email your reservations to Lisa Nichol at lisawnichol@yahoo.com. If you want to come just for the meeting and program, please arrive at 7:15.

I mailed the Wilmington AGO yearbooks in mid-October. If you did not receive yours, please let me know by replying to this email. Thanks to St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church for donating the printing of our yearbook. I look forward to seeing you on November 27.

Best regards,
Sara Bryant, Dean
Wilmington Chapter of the AGO

Piano for Sale

Yamaha AvantGrand N2 Piano. MSRP: $14,999.00 (Asking $8,000).

Description from the Yamaha website:
“The innovative and revolutionary AvantGrand-Technology built into an elegant slim-cabinet. True Grand Piano Performance from a Vertical Grand that is minimal in design and aesthetically gratifying. Featuring the same grand piano action as the N3 in a form that molds beautifully to any wall, the N2 is an instrument for the future, yet one that holds firmly to its identity as a grand piano. With a revolutionary speaker system and a touch that simply compels
you to play, the compact form and feel of this elegant piano exudes refinement.

For piano-lovers wanting a grand piano for small spaces, the AvantGrand series now offers yet another choice.”

The piano is currently in Chapel Hill.

Contact: Kelly Harris, 919-259-9731, kellyharrisnyc@gmail.com

Young Organists Competition

Sponsored by the Greater Columbia AGO Chapter

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Open to Grades 8 – 12

First Prize $1500
Second Prize $1000
Third Prize $750
Hymn Playing Award $250
Bach Playing Award $250

For rules and application, see www.columbiaago.org

For more information contact franceswebb@sc.rr.com or 803-772-1492

2018-2019 Programs

Tuesday chapter events begin with dinner at 6:30 followed by a brief business meeting and evening program. Contact Lisa Nichol for reservations.

Sunday, October 28, 2018, 5:00 p.m. – Henry Webb, organ, First Presbyterian Church, 125 South Third Street

Tuesday, November 27, 2018, 6:30 p.m. – Lecture on composer Nadia Boulanger presented by Dr. Helena Spencer, hosted by St. John’s Episcopal Church, 1219 Forest Hills Dr.

Sunday, January 6, 2019, 6:30 p.m. – Epiphany party hosted by Bob & Lisa Nichol at their home. Bring a dish to share.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019, 6:30 p.m. – Bill Remele will present a lecture recital, hosted by St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 12 North 6th Street

Friday, March 1, 2019, 7:30 p.m. – Joshua Stafford, organ, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 16 North 16th St.

Friday, June 7, 2019, 6:30 p.m. – Chapter Social, hosted by John and Sharon Miller at their home. Come for a relaxing evening as we close out our program year. Bring a dish to share and
enjoy each other’s company.

Music Conferences

Oasis Music and Worship Conference, Oct. 19 & 20, 2018, Campbell University,

National Conference on Sacred Music, January 9-11, 2019, St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, Charleston, SC

Furman Church Music Conference, January 24-25, 2019, Greenville, SC, featuring Stephen Cleobury

GREENVILLE, S.C.—Furman University will host its 2019 Church Music Conference on campus Thursday and Friday, Jan. 24 and 25. The featured clinician for the event is Stephen Cleobury, acclaimed director of music at King’s College, Cambridge, England.

The conference is open to the public. Registration for the two-day event is $75 prior to Jan. 6, and $95 after that date as space remains. Conference attendees who wish to sing in the combined choir for Friday evening’s Evensong service, on a space available basis, must register by Nov. 15. Student registration is $50.

The conference, founded in 1971, is made possible through a grant from the Thomson Foundation. Drawing church musicians from all over the Southeast, the conference features nationally known clinicians who present lectures and conduct workshops relating to the practice of church music.

One of the foremost church musicians of our time and faculty member at King’s College since 1982, Cleobury will conduct open rehearsals of Furman’s outstanding choral ensembles, the Furman Singers and Furman Chamber Choir, and will also lead a demonstration rehearsal with the youth choirs of Greenville’s Chicora Voices.

Cleobury will also speak about King’s College musical traditions, including the world-famous Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, and will conduct the Furman Singers, conference attendees, and the Parish Choir of Christ Church (Episcopal), Greenville in a concluding Choral Evensong. This service will include the premiere performance of Cleobury’s anthem, “Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Skies,” commissioned for the 2019 Church Music Conference.

For more information about the Church Music Conference, visit the website. Or contact conference coordinator and University Organist Charles Tompkins at 864-294-2969 or charles.tompkins@furman.edu. The Furman Department of Music may be reached at 864-294-2086 or Furman.Music@furman.edu.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS – 2019 AGO Southeast Regional Convention

June 9-12, 2019

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Charles Tompkins, Nicole Keller, Andrew Kotylo, Jared Johnson, Nigel Potts

St. Pauls, Conway; Trinity, Myrtle Beach; First UMC, Conway; First UMC, Myrtle Beach; All Saints, Pawleys Island

For more information: http://www.agose2019.com/.  Registration opens January 1, 2019.

Local Events

Click on the following links for the most current concert information!

Beckwith Recital Hall, UNCW: http://uncw.edu/music/events/events-calendar.html

Wilson Center, CFCC: http://cfcc.edu/capefearstage/tickets-and-events/

Kenan Auditorium, UNCW: https://uncw.edu/arts/venues/kenan/calendar.html

Kenan Chapel, Landfall: http://kenanchapel.com/calendar

Thalian Hall: http://www.thalianhall.org/events#map

Church Concerts
First Presbyterian: http://www.firstonthird.org/music/music-at-first/

St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian: https://musiconmarket.org/upcoming-performances/

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church: http://spechurch.com/MUSIC/concerts.html



Membership in the Wilmington AGO is open to all who possess a love of organ and choral music. For more information on becoming a member, please contact Greg Gore, Treasurer, at chawk92@aol.com.  You may also join online by visiting https://www.agohq.org/oncard-login/.


Grace United Methodist Church – Wilmington, NC
Children and Youth Choirs Director (Part-time)

Son Shine Singers (grades 3-5) & Solid Rock Singers (grades 6-8)

Introductory Statement

Grace UMC in Wilmington, NC is committed to offering to its young Christians weekly opportunities for faith growth while developing musical talent and appreciation through vocal music education by providing a comprehensive music ministry program for children.


  • Musical training in choral music and proficient in keyboard. A bachelor’s degree in music is preferred.
  • Knowledge of music pedagogy and experience teaching music to children, grades 38.
  • Excellent communications skills with children, young people, parents, colleagues and staff.
  • A Christian foundation.
  • Organizational skills.
  • Proficiency in conducting choirs, grades 3-8.
  • Computer skills.


  • Plan.
  • Provide a warm, friendly, and inviting environment for the choir members.
  • Instruct the young singers on basic rudiments of singing as well as music: pitch, harmony, rhythm, and dynamics.
  • Communicate well with choir members, parents, and staff.
  • Meet as needed and appropriate with the Director of Music Ministries and/or the Director of Family Ministries.


  • Meet with Son Shine Singers (gr. 3-5) for 30 minutes & Solid Rock Singers (gr. 6-8) for 45 minutes each one time per week Wednesday evenings.
  • Have each choir sing one time per month for either an 8:30 a.m. service or an 11:00 a.m. Sunday worship service including seasonal music programs.


  • Lead the music program during Vacation Bible School (VBS) with the VBS presentation on the Sunday immediately following the week of VBS.


Commensurate with qualifications and experience.

To apply: Please email a cover letter and resume to jobs@gracedowntown.net by August 19, 2018.

St. Andrew’s-on-the-Sound Episcopal Church

Interim Director of Music Ministry

St. Andrew’s On-the-Sound Episcopal Church in Wilmington is seeking an interim Director of Music Ministry. This half-time position involves directing a children’s choir, a handbell choir, and an adult choir. Funding is available for section leaders as well as a separate fund for paying guest musicians to enhance worship. There are two services: 9:00 and 11:15 and a 1995 Cornell Zimmer pipe/digital instrument. Please contact Richard Elliott at 910-256-3034.

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



For more information about certification, please visit http://www.agohq.org/certification or contact the Dean at sara.w.bryant@gmail.com.


Contact Us

Dean: Sara Bryant- sara.w.bryant@gmail.com

Subdean and Program Coordinator: John Sullivan – jds3rd@aol.com

Secretary: Sharon Miller – smiller@sacpc.org

Treasurer: Greg Gore – chawk92@aol.com

Member at Large (2019): Bill Remele – wremele@gmail.com

Member at Large (2020): Bob Norem – noremtpc@gmail.com

Member at Large (2021): Doug Spivey – dspivey100@embarqmail.com



AGO Southeast Region Blog: http://agoregionivblog.blogspot.com/

AGO Southeast Region Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pg/AGOSoutheast

AGO National Headquarters: http://www.agohq.org

Music at First: http://www.firstonthird.org/music/music-at-first/

Music Events at UNCW: https://events.uncw.edu/MasterCalendar/MasterCalendar.aspx

Wilmington Symphony Orchestra: http://wilmingtonsymphony.org/

AGO National website