July 2016 AGO Chapter News

Northeast Region

Waterbury, CT April 16, a Youth Choir Festival was held at St. Rose of Lima Church in Meri­­den. The event was cosponsored by the Greater Hartford chapter of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians. Rehearsal began at 10 a.m., and the concert/sharing time was at 2 p.m. The 50-voice choir was directed by Chris Shay and accompanied by Jean Degan (piano), Bill Degan (organ), and John Marshall (percussion). The program included Paul Halley’s Freedom Trilogy. The church sanctuary has three choir lofts that were successfully used for a round, and the church has a 1917 Aus­tin/1982 Foley-Baker pipe organ.

—William Degan

Merrimack Valley, MA April 3, a workshop titled “The Musicians’ Role in Creating Singing Congregations” was presented by Carol Doran at Christ Church, Andover (host Barbara Bruns, director of music). Doran explained that we are born with a natural love of music and must use our gifts and skills as musicians. She told workshop participants to experiment with a variety of accompaniment practices to offer surprising and positive results, and to be courageous and creative. She also emphasized that introducing new music for the service will rejuvenate the congregation singing. The workshop concluded with the singing of several hymns, with music composed by Doran. Afterward, several workshop participants played a few pieces and hymns on the organ, to the delight of all.

—Jodi Templer

Binghamton, NY April 10, as part of its Link Organ Series, the music department of Binghamton University, in conjunction with the AGO chapter, hosted Diane Meredith Belcher in a recital on the three-manual Guilbault-Thérien organ (1996) at United Presbyterian Church. Widely acclaimed as one of the country’s finest organists, she lived up to her reputation in playing works by Rheinberger, Dahl, Bach, Messiaen, Franck, and Johannes Matthias Michel.

• April 14, master’s degree candidate Denise Bassen presented her graduate recital at United Pres­byterian Church, playing works of Bach, Duruflé, and Vierne. Bassen is a student of Jonathan Biggers at Binghamton Univer­sity.

• April 24, Timothy E. Smith, organist-choir director at Trinity Memorial Episcopal Church, organized and led a tribute concert in honor of his predecessor, Peter Browne, who passed away last May. Browne had served at Trinity for 34 years. “Honoring the Life and Works of Peter Browne” included performances by groups that Browne had led or with whom he had been associated.

—John Holt

Buffalo, NY March 12–13, the chapter enjoyed a masterclass and recital presented by Gail Ar­cher at Baker Memorial United Methodist Church, East Aurora (host Jeff Thompson). The love­ly sanctuary there is graced by Tiffany windows and houses an almost unaltered 1928 E.M. Skinner organ. The events were part of the Western New York Women in the Arts series. In Archer’s work with Alexander Straus-Fausto, Maria Chomicka, and Jeanne Suski, she put particular emphasis on clear articulation, careful attention to consistent tempos, appropriate regis­­­- tra­­tions, and taking seriously each note and rest in the works by Bach and Mendelssohn that had been prepared by the organists. Archer’s enthusiasm for music history and performance practice was contagious, and her remarks were presented with humor and encouragement for the artists. Her own recital featured an array of works by female composers; when pressed for an encore, she sight-read the Bach-Vivaldi Concerto in C. A reception featuring Christine Snyder’s scrumptious cookies followed the recital.

—Caryn Lawler

Eastern New York  April 17, the chapter presented a recital by Gail Archer, who played delightfully on the Allen organ at First Reformed Church, Scotia. She preceded her performance with an introduction about each of the composers—including J.S. Bach, Nicolaus Bruhns, Johanna Senfter, Libby Larsen, Samuel Barber, and Jeanne Demessieux. Her smooth transitions between pieces and her pedal artistry made this recital a special treat for the audience. The chapter is grateful to Bradley Day and Justan Foster (host church organist) for helping sponsor this event.

—Donna Tallman

Suffolk, NY April 3, the Suffolk and Nassau chapters joined with the Rockville Centre chapter of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians to present OrganExpo 2016: Pedals, Pipes & Pizza at Chaminade High School in Mineola. The auditorium at Chaminade is home to a three-manual, 15-rank “hybrid” Wurlitzer/Morton/Austin pipe organ and often presents screenings of silent films with live organ accompaniment. Dan Minervini, a Chaminade alumnus and winner of the 2015 American Theatre Organ Society’s Young Organists Competition, dazzled those in attendance with his performance. Program coordinator Christopher Cusumano worked with Minervini in a descriptive tour of the different families of pipes. Some of those in attendance toured the pipe chambers. The program was very well received by those who attended. We are grateful for the hospitality of Brother Robert Lahey, who was instrumental in the discovery, relocation, and reconfiguration of the organ—which was originally dedicated in 1980, the 50th anniversary of the school. After opening the console for hands-on explora­tion, the program ended with pizza and refreshments.

—Paul Elsener

Westchester County, NY April 9, Jan-Piet Knijff played a dedicatory recital on the newly restored organ at Huguenot Me­morial Church, Pelham (Kath­- ryn Jones, music director-organist). The three-manual organ was rebuilt by Adema’s Kerkorgelbouw, The Netherlands. Knijff showcased various organ stops in his selections, which included works by Mendelssohn, Bach, Schumann, de Klerk, Boëllmann, and Hindemith. The following day, he led an Organ Intro for piano students. Recep­tions followed both events.

—Joyce Gardner

Mid-Atlantic Region

Potomac, MD April 17, the chapter and the Chevy Chase Concert Series of Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church, Washington, D.C., presented Organized Rhythm. Organist Clive Driskill-Smith and percussionist Joseph Gramley presented a fantastic series of works, beginning with Fanfare for the Common Man by Copland through The Planets by Holst. The program was primarily arrangements by the pair, with the exception of Ground II by Thierry Escaich, which was specifically written for organ and percussion. The two work very well together and performed an outstanding concert, which was followed by a reception with time to meet and greet the artists.

—Gerald Piercey

Central New Jersey March 13, the annual members’ recital was presented at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Trenton by eleven organists who played a program featuring French music. Trinity is home to a magnificent four-manual, 75-stop pipe organ built by the Petty-Madden firm of Hopewell, N.J. This is one of the largest pipe organs in central Jersey, situated in a sumptuously resonant acoustic. After the program, recitalists and friends enjoyed a lovely reception at a private home not far from the cathedral.

• April 1, the chapter coordinated the reception for a concert sponsored by the Princeton Theological Seminary in the Miller Chapel. An entertaining duo from Denmark—Sven-Ingvart Mikkelsen (organ) and Jo­chen Brusch (violin)—played classical music and compositions of their own. Interspersed were their enjoyable arrangements of music popular in the 1960s.

• April 18, in Miller Chapel, the chapter presented member Mina Choi in a lecture and performance of the pedal-piano music of Robert Schumann. In the early 1840s, influenced by the music of Bach, Schumann studied counterpoint intensively before composing the three sets of fugues for this unusual instrument. At the Fritts organ, Choi played some selections from the first and third sets—including the last piece, a brilliant work much admired by organists and audiences.

—Mary Giordmaine and Nicholas Steltzer

Chambersburg, PA April 24, the chapter held a Pipes Spectacular event at First United Methodist Church. Freda Dorand was the coordinator, and Linda Peppernick was the host organist. In addition to Dorand and Peppernick, performers included Carolyn Kerlin, Doug McCulloh, Tom Notestine, Kyunghee Reed, Ben Schellhase, Ken Walker, Timothy Wertime, and Helen Wingert. A variety of music was played for an appreciative audience. The congregation sang the hymn “O, for a Thousand Tongues to Sing” as the closing.

—Helen Wingert

Lehigh Valley, PA April 25, Nativity Lutheran Church in Allentown was the location for a choral workshop and festival concert for members and friends of the chapter. Sally Reeser (host musician) offered a cordial welcome to the group. The event was enthusiastically led by Mi­chael Kemp and organized by Andrew Long (sub-dean). A volunteer choir of singers from local churches prepared anthems during the workshop that were then offered during the closing program. The closing festival concert included several hymns that related directly to the choir’s anthems and created a very inspiring worship experience. Kemp introduced each hymn and then directed the anthems with an infectious energy and wonderful musical insight. It was an exciting and worthwhile afternoon of lovely music for all those present, whether singing or listening.

—Gloria Snyder

Philadelphia, PA March 6, the chapter hosted more than 50 members at a catered dinner at Christ Church Ithan in Villa­nova. Jeff Fowler, co-chair of the chapter’s archives committee, was host. Invited guests included longtime chapter members and former deans, whose collective knowledge of the chapter’s his­tory would be an asset in inaugurating the soon-to-be-established chapter archives at the new Organ Historical Society headquarters in Villanova. Guests were 
invited to bring artifacts vital to the development of the archives. Current Dean David Furniss introduced and gave special recognition to all former deans present. James Weaver, executive director of the Organ Historical Society, was the guest speaker for the evening. It is hoped that this inaugural event will be a catalyst for the development and organization of the chapter’s history.

• April 10, the chapter cosponsored a concerto concert at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Chestnut Hill. Zach Fritsch-Hemenway (host) was the conductor. The performers, all students currently studying at the Eastman School of Music, were Adam Detzner, Brian Glikes, and Caroline Robinson. They played music by Rheinberger, Poulenc, and C.P.E. Bach on St. Paul’s Aeolian-Skinner organ, accompanied by the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia.

—David Furniss and Marcia Sommers

Pittsburgh, PA April 22, the Organ Artists Series presented Christian Lane playing the 96-rank Rudolf von Beckerath organ (1962) at St. Paul Cathedral. Included in the varied and interesting program were works by Nico Muhly and Carson Coo­man, commissioned by Lane.

• April 25, members gathered at St. Paul Cathedral (host Donald Fellows) for its monthly dinner meeting and program. Bruce Stevens presented a program titled “Anton Heiller’s Insights into Bach’s Orgelbüchlein.” On the faculty of the University of Richmond, Stevens studied two years in Vienna with the famed Bach player Anton Heil­ler. In addition to discussing the cho­rales and performing nine contrasting ones, he provided an excellent hand­-out that included a brief listing of all the chorales, with pertinent comments.

—Barbara McKelway

Southeastern Pennsylvania, April 17, the chapter held its members’ recital at Christ’s Community Church, Drexel Hill. The sanctuary organ was installed in the 1920s by M.P. Möller and was refurbished and enlarged to 29 ranks by the Tellers Organ Company in the early 1960s. The recital included works by Bach, Karg-Elert, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Elmore. Participants included Nancy Brown, Ken Delmar, Loretta Hartnett (host), John Kampmeyer (dean), Laurie Mueller, Stanley Orr, Michael Trinder, and Jerry Troy.

—Nancy Brown

Tidewater, VA April 3, six local organists presented the complete organ sonatas of Felix Mendelssohn at Christ and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Norfolk. The performers were Rebecca Davy, Norman Elton, Tom Marshall, Marjorie Setnicky, Allen Shaffer, and JanEl Will. As part of the Sacred Music in a Sacred Space series, this was the fourth annual Allen Shaffer Concert, bestowed on Shaffer upon his retirement in 2012 after 30 years of service to the church.

—Kevin Kwan

Winchester, VA April 26, chapter members met at Braddock Street United Methodist Church. Guest speakers were Shenandoah University’s Glenn Caluda, professor of music emeritus (classical guitar), and Elizabeth Caluda, professor of music (piano). Elizabeth Caluda is also president of the Virginia Music Teachers Association (2015–17). The Caludas served as musicians for more than 25 years at the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Winchester; Elizabeth was director of music, and Glenn wrote and arranged choral compositions for the choir when needed. They shared some of their works and described circumstances under which they were composed and used. Chapter members sang a few of them, and the Caludas played recordings made of some of their compositions. The program ended with a Vivaldi duet played by Elizabeth on organ and Glenn on guitar.

—Gloria Harris

Southeast Region

Central Florida March 6, at First United Methodist, Orlando, the chapter presented organist Dongho Lee in a recital. On the IV/79 Skinner/Dyer instrument, she played works by Elgar, Bach, Bovet, Reger, Wi­dor, Buck, and Dupré. A meet-and-greet reception was held in the church parlor following the program. Lee is artist in residence at Providence United Methodist Church, Charlotte, N.C. She is adjunct instructor of organ at Davidson College, and the winner of the first prize and audience prize in the 2010 AGO National Young Artists Competition in Organ Performance. This second in a series of three world-class concerts scheduled for the current season gave attendees an opportunity to contribute to the chapter’s scholarship program. The program awards and encourages young students in grades nine through twelve to study the organ. While the chapter is in its 90th year, the scholarship program is just a few years old. It has in many ways made the chapter stronger, and others are encouraged to begin a scholarship program if they do not yet have one. Pictures of this event can be found at Facebook.com/cental­floridaAGO.

—Ture Larson and John F. Reilly

Miami, FL April 4, following a delicious supper provided in the social hall of Miami Shores Presbyterian Church, James Gensel (director of music ministries) introduced John Near, whose recent biography of Charles-Marie Widor (1844–1937) provides an overview of the life and career of this organist, composer, and teacher. Although his organ compositions are what Widor is primarily known for, these works were but a small part of his total output. To prove his point, Near presented more than one and a half hours of recorded examples of choral, chamber, piano, orchestral, and vocal compositions with scores projected on a screen. The imaginative skill and variety in these works are truly remarkable (as are the technical skills required of performers). Recordings as well as copies of the well-researched biography were available at the conclusion of this splendid event.

—Frederick Kent

Sarasota-Manatee, FL April 11, James Johnston presented “A Musical Visit to Boston, 1880–1910” at First UCC Church, Sarasota. The program was an overview of the musical life in Boston presented through the lives of Benjamin Johnson (B.J.) Lang and his daughter Margaret Ruthven Lang. B.J. was the founding conductor of the Apollo Club (a male-voice choir) and the Cecilia Society (mixed voices); both groups are still active today. B.J. was the conductor of the world premiere of the Tchai­kovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 in 1875. Margaret was the first woman composer to have an orchestral piece played by an American orchestra when the Boston Symphony played her Dramatic Overture in 1893. Samples of the works of Arthur Foote, George Whiting, and Dudley Buck were played on a Hook & Hastings organ by Jim and Carol Hawkinson and Greg Chestnut, and excerpts of music by Margaret Ruthven Lang were heard. Throughout the program, the audience sipped various kinds of tea while enjoying tasty finger sandwiches, scones, and petit fours.

—Nancy Siebecker

Atlanta, GA April 24, the chapter hosted a reception in honor of the centennial of the Atlanta Music Club. The event took place following a Scholarship Showcase with several talented musicians performing at Atlanta’s beautiful Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. Construction of Callanwolde was completed in 1920 by the Candler Family of Coca-Cola. A three-manual Aeolian pipe organ was included in the original construction; it was played during the April reception by members Bill Callaway and Randy Elkins.

—Rachel Ficklin

Augusta, GA April 18, the chapter had a delicious dinner at St. John United Methodist Church (Jamie Garvey, host organist-director of music), after which attendees moved to the sanctuary for a program of hymn-based organ repertoire. Members presenting pieces on the 2003 Dobson, Opus 78, were Alvin Bloun (director of music and worship, St. Mary on the Hill Catholic Church, Augusta), Ken Courtney (director of music-organist, First Presbyterian, Aiken, S.C.), Don Dupee (director of music-organist, St. Thaddeus Episcopal, Ai­ken), and Garvey. To remind us of the actual hymn tune, many of the selections were preceded by a vocal rendition of the hymn by vocalist Sawyer Branham, a voice major at Augusta University and member of St. John’s chancel choir.

—David Salter

Northeast Georgia March 13, in lieu of a regular business meeting for the month, the chapter participated in the Second Sunday Celebration at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Athens. The theme of the chapter members’ performances was organ with other instruments or voice, and four hands at one organ. Organists playing included Nancy Goodrich, Ivan Frazier, Ray Martin, David Singer, Jerry Evans, and Jim Carter.

—Ivan Frazier

Savannah, GA March 12, the chapter sponsored a daylong event (Timothy Hall and Kyle Ballantine, co-chairs) showcasing five historic churches and five fine organs. Savannah is home to many architecturally significant houses of worship containing noteworthy pipe organs in the South. The day was geared toward the tourists of Savannah and served as a means of introducing the greater public to the King of Instruments. At each venue, there was a half-hour organ recital, followed by a brief sanctuary/architectural tour. In early afternoon, Rebecca McClain offered a recital on the Aeolian-Skinner organ at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church. Next, Steven Branyon played the Wicks/Schlueter organ at St. John’s Episcopal. Heidi Ordaz played Cathedral of St. John the Baptist’s Noack instrument, followed by Kathryn Van Eck playing the Rieger-Kloss instrument at Independent Presbyterian. Finally, Timothy Hall offered a recital at Christ Church (Episcopal) on the Harrison & Harrison organ there.

—Justin L. Addington

Jackson, MS February 16, the chapter continued its 30-year tradition of presenting an Annual Choral and Organ Concert, this year at First Presbyterian Church and featuring the concert choirs of Belhaven University, under the direction of Christopher Shelt and assisted by Christopher Phillips. The choir performed a wide range of repertoire. Several anthems were accompanied by guest organist Samuel Metzger, organist and music associate at Second Presbyterian Church in Memphis, Tenn. Metzger opened with an engaging organ program of music by Bach, Handel, Vaughan Williams, Thalben-Ball, and Bédard, playing with expression, dexterity, and energy. This annual event provides the benefit of an expanded audience of both organ and choral music lovers, and also draws in the family and friends of the performers.

—Carol S. Durham

Wilmington, NC April 24, the chapter presented an Organ and Church History Tour of four downtown churches; it was open to the public. Attendees visited the Basilica Shrine of St. Mary, First Presbyterian Church, St. James Episcopal Church, and First Baptist Church. At each location, a parishioner described the history of the church, and then a chapter member played the organ. Organists included Sara Bryant, David Heinzman, John Sullivan, and Justin Smith (dean).

—Sara Bryant

Charleston, SC April 23–24, John Ferguson, renowned organist and hymn specialist, was in the Holy City for a workshop and hymn festival at the historic St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church. Chapter members attended a workshop on hymn playing Saturday morning with volunteers Huey Waldon, Ann Longdon Hood, Jason Bazzle, and Loretta Haskell. On Sunday evening, Ferguson led the hymn festival with a 30-voice choir composed of singers from St. Matthew’s, St. John’s Lutheran, and other area churches. Pastor James Blalock presided with readers Loretta Haskell, Charles Lippy, and Edmund LeRoy. The congregation of 200-plus was advised to sing loudly if they had good voices—and even louder if they had bad ones, just to get even. The event celebrated the 175th anniversary of St. Mat­thew’s founding and the 100th birthday of Emily Remington, longtime Charleston choral and church musician, who was in attendance and resoundingly applauded.

—Edmund LeRoy

Grand Strand, SC April 17, the chapter hosted an old-fashioned hymn-sing at Belin United Methodist Church, Murrells Inlet (Jim Sellers, director of worship arts). Featuring hymns of the Easter season, the congregation and choirs of singers and bell ringers sang hymns with various treatments, some with accompaniment and some a cappella. It was a lovely afternoon of relaxed singing together, and we are indebted to James Canty (trumpet), Karen Kearney (organist-choirmaster at Church of the Resurrection, Surfside Beach), and Ashley Sosis (music director-organist at Trinity Church, Myrtle Beach). This program was such a success that the chapter looks forward to repeating it in the future.

—Karen Kearney

Greater Columbia, SC April 17, the chapter held an installation service for newly elected officers for the 2016–17 program year. District convener Tony Roof inducted new members of the executive board: Frances Webb (dean); Joy Ackerman (sub-dean); Margaret Davis (secretary); Tony Roof (treasurer); and David Lowry, Karen Sheve­nell, and Norman McCorkle (members at large). Susan Stur­kie (membership officer) was recognized for her invaluable service to the chapter. Retiring board member Eddie Huss was presented a gift; and Nancy Kelley, who retired after serving for 28 years as treasurer, was presented a framed certificate of apprecia­-tion and a gift. The event was held at the Church of the Good Shepherd (Episcopal), where parish musician David Lowry and the choir presented a Choral Evensong service prior to the installation.

—Frances Webb

Knoxville, TN March 7, at the Church of the Ascension, Charles Tournemire’s rarely heard Poems After the Seven Last Words of Christ was played by organist Josh Dumbleton, associate director of music at Edenton Street United Methodist Church in Raleigh, N.C. These were accompanied by the reading of reflective poems and other literary passages by the Rev. Sally Bates, retired chaplain of the Duke Divinity School, Durham, N.C.

• April 4, the annual student re­cital was held at St. James Episcopal Church. The six who played were Frances Butler (student of James Garvey), Ericka McCarty (student of John Brock), Tamra Kincaid and Don King (students of Brenda Gos­lee), Joshua Sumter (student of Ashley Burell), and Jeremy Anantharaj (student of Edie Johnson). At the business meeting preceding the recital, the following officers for 2016–17 were elected: Andrew Morehead (dean), Simon Hogg (sub-dean), Sandi Henry (secretary), John Brock (treasurer), Jim Mason (registrar), Gail Hafner (member at large for 2016–19), and Joy Fournier and Eileen Rudd (auditors). The winners of the Brock Organ Education Fund scholarships for the coming year were announced; they are Chase Ben­e­fiel (a rising freshman at Carson-Newman University and student of John Brock) and Tamra Kincaid (a student at Roane State Community College).

—Allison Ensor

Great Lakes Region

Louisville, KY April 12, the chapter met at St. Thomas Episcopal Church (Robert William­son, host) for its annual Guild Service for the end of the program year. New officers elected and inducted for the coming year are Daniel Martin (dean), Denise Whittington (sub-dean), Bryan Hoover (treasurer), Susan Arru (secretary), Josh Duncan (registrar), and Kay Wilkinson (historian/archivist). Executive committee members elected are Kristin Schussler, Laura Sullivan, and Mark Walker. The chapter extends a warm thanks to outgoing Dean David Paul Gibson, Treasurer David Minton, and all other members who served to make this year a successful one.

—Josh Duncan

Grand Rapids, MI April 18, the chapter held its third annual Annamae Rotman Young Organist Competition, sponsored by Richard Rotman in honor of his mother. The competition was held at Park Congregational Church. All competitors must be from the area and under 24 years of age. Judges for the competition were Barbara Dulmage, Carrie Groenewold, and Karl Schrock. The first prize of $1,000 was awarded to Annelise Van Dyken, an elementary-education major at Calvin College. The second place prize of $500 was awarded to Owen Telling­huisen, an eighth-grader who played the Widor Toccata as part of his recital. Competitors Bethany Dame, a high-school freshman, and Nathan DeBruine, a premed student at Grand Valley State University, were also awarded $250 prizes. All of the contestants played extremely well and demonstrated the encouraging fact that the art of the organ is very much alive in young people today. Pictured are competition co-chair Joan Ringerwole (front left) with prizewinners Owen Tellinghuisen, Bethany Dame, Nathan DeBruine, and Annelise Van Dyken; co-chair Bruce Klanderman; Annamae Rotman; (back) judges Karl Schrock, Carrie Groenewold, and Barbara Bulmage.

—Helen Hofmeister Hawley

Greater Lansing, MI April 24, a members’ recital was held at Emanuel Lutheran Church. Susanne Hoekzema, convener, titled the recital “Music Through­out the Liturgical Year.” Performers chose their favorite preludes and postludes, resulting in a diverse and exciting program. One hundred “friends of the organ” were in attendance and most generously donated $800 to our education and scholarship program, described in detail by Meredith Hines, education chair. Organ scholars Ben Foster and Timothy Nechuta played to the delight of everyone, especially the youth in the audience. Others who played included Steph­anie Gewirtz, Barbara Hiranpradist, Meredith Hines, Su­- sanne Hoek­zema, John Horak, and Hae Won Jang. Each performer submitted an overview of his or her musical selection—including biographical information, anecdotes, and plenty of humor. Feedback on this aspect of the program was most favorable. The afternoon drew to a close with a well-attended reception organized by Brian Fowler. The organ at Emanuel Lutheran was built by chapter member Rich­ard Swanson and has three manuals and 45 ranks. It was originally an Estey instrument, with materials incorporated from the Archie White rebuild. The renovation was completed in 1997 with a new console and an upgrade in 2004.

—Barbara Hiranpradist

Saginaw Valley, MI May 1, the chapter sponsored a Welsh hymn festival at Trinity Episcopal in Bay City, attracting an audience of 125 people. The Rev. Andreas Teich and the Rev. Steven Starke, members of the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, designed the event in collaboration with Robert Sabourin (sub-dean), who prepared a choir of regional singers for the event. Patti Bow­en and Steven Egler served as event organists. Members Mair Alsgaard, David Hammond, Calla Ringgenberg, and Ken (Harriet) Wuepper filled other important event roles.

—Nicholas E. Schmelter

Canton, OH March 18, the chapter sponsored a recital by Todd Wilson at St. Paul’s Lu­theran Church, Massillon. The entire program featured organ works of Maurice Duruflé. The acoustics of the church were well suited to the music, and every­-one enjoyed a wonderful performance. Afterward, there was a reception hosted by the ladies of St. Paul’s.

—Elaine Vaughan

Columbus, OH April 9, organist Jason Roberts presented an improvisation workshop at First Congregational Church. The workshop focused on improvising using chord families as outlined by Paul Hindemith. Ro­berts is associate director of mu­sic at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Manhattan, N.Y.

—Mark Stuart

Toledo, OH April 15, 18 organ aficionados, guided by chapter member Mark Muller of Muller Pipe Organ Co. took a “Tax Day” tour of the company’s original, rebuilt, and repurposed organs in Michigan. The first stop was to see and play the IV/54 Schantz (1970), removed from Our Savior Lutheran in Detroit and stored, rebuilt, and installed by Muller in 2006 at St. Peter Lutheran Church, Macomb. New additions by Muller, ironically, were ranks from the 1909 E.M. Skinner of Trinity Episcopal, Toledo—removed during a sanctuary remodeling project—including a 16-8-4 Bombarde unit in the Great, Swell 16′ Contra Fagotto, 8′ Trumpet, 8′ Oboe, and 4′ Clarion, Solo 8′ Vox Humana and Antiphonal 8′ Principal, 8′ Viole, and 8′ Vox Celeste. The travelers were joined by Michigan organists and student organists, and other northern Ohio guests, for lunch at Trattoria Andiamo in Grosse Pointe. The afternoon began with the III/24 Skinner Opus 705 (1926), reinstalled at St. Michael’s Episcopal, Grosse Pointe Woods, originally from St. Columba Episcopal, Detroit, and refurbished with replica Skinner console by Muller, restored original E.M. Skinner pipework, and a preexisting Holden organ solo division. The third stop of the day was at St. Mary’s R.C. Church in downtown Monroe; the 1988 installation has pipework and chests by Muller, retaining a 1965 Schantz console.

—Ed Duling

North Central Region

North Iowa April 3, the chapter and Clear Lake United Methodist Church hosted Hector Olivera in a recital celebrating the 40th anniversary of the church’s Holtkamp organ. Olivera chose works of Driffill, Handel, Jongen, Bach, Widor, and Boëllmann and concluded with an improvisation on submitted theme Picardy, playing to an appreciative audience. Special guest was Kenneth Usher from Dallas, Tex. Forty years ago, Carl Staplin and Arthur Poister served as consultants for the installation.

—Cynthia Johnson

Greater Kansas City, MO April 17, the chapter and Dome and Spire Organ Foundation (Jan Kraybill, FAGO, principal organist) cosponsored Jonathan Dimmock in a recital on the Auditorium Organ at the Community of Christ headquarters, Independence. Dimmock is organ­- ist for the San Francisco Symphony, accompanist at Congregation Sherith Israel (San Francisco), principal organist at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor, and organ instructor at Sonoma State University.

—Norm Kinnaugh

St. Louis, MO April 25, around 60 chapter members were welcomed to Manchester United Methodist Church by John Car­gile (host organist). After the eve­ning meal, they were introduced to the newly installed five-manual R.A. Colby pipe organ. Brad Colby, grandson of the company’s founder, presented a slide show of some of the organbuild­er’s notable installations. He offered regrets from Bob Walker (digital collaborator on the organ), whose plans to attend were thwarted by a fall. Brad’s talk highlighted the design and engineering aspects of the organbuilding process. R.A. Colby builds around 40% pure pipe organs, and around 60% combination instruments. Whether they are building a replica (like a Skinner) or an instrument of their own design, their research, engineering, and building process aim for the highest quality. Brad described how his company integrated 37 of the existing 38 ranks from the existing Manchester UMC organ with 30 newly installed ranks, while extending the tonal palette with an additional 65 digital voices. He also described how advances in digital/pipe instruments now feature technology through which a tracking device follows the temperature of a room to keep the digital stops in tune with the pipes. One lovely detail within the console carving is the inclusion of a flowering dogwood (Missouri’s state tree). John Cargile talked about some of the individual stops, including celestes, that speak from the front, gallery antiphonal, and overhead; the variety of 32′ Pedal stops; and the Nachtigall stop, which uses baby oil instead of water (slower evaporation). He then beautifully showcased the organ’s varied sounds through several pieces from Italian tunes to Sow­erby. Garrett Martin, who represents the company, took a tune request (Lasst uns Erfreuen) and played an improvisation that demonstrated the organ’s breadth as he moved from gentle registrations and stacked harmonies through abundant ensemble variations, finally rippling into the roar of a full-organ toccata. The evening ended with members examining the console and touring the pipe chambers.

—Dawn Riske

Omaha, NE April 17, the chapter held its second Hymn Festival at First United Methodist Church, on the Quimby organ. The festival focused on the organ as the leader of congregational song, and the congregation, along with a 60-voice choir, sang every hymn. Guest instrumentalists were also part 
of the program. Hymns selected followed the church year. Participants were able to experience the expectancy of the first part of the year, and follow through Lent to the rejoicing of Easter. They sang with the spirit, celebrated the Reformation, remembered the saints, and exalted in the recog­nition of Christ the King. Organists were Marty Wheeler Bur­nett, Marie Rubis Bauer, Barbara Frem­der, Wayne Kallstrom, Mi­chael Bauer, Mark Kurtz, Charles Ore, Jeremy Bankson, and Mi­chael McCabe. Two organists presented their own published arrangements. The festival raised over $1,000, which will be matched by a challenge gift. Funds will be used to offer educational opportunities to church musicians. More than 25 AGO members took part in the festival planning, playing, singing in the choir, or helping with hospitality.

—Jean Johnson

Madison, WI April 9, the chapter and members of the Association of Church Musicians presented a varied program of selections for organ, piano, and voice at Oakwood Village–University Woods. Residents of the retirement community and their family members enjoyed the hourlong program in the facility’s Resurrection Chapel, which houses a lovely two-manual mechanical-action organ built by Bruce Case, also a member of ACM. Participants (pictured left to right) included Mark Brampton Smith, Donald DeBruin, Robert Eversman, Ken Stancer, Bruce Bengtson, Sigrun Franzen, Larry Theler, and Amy Hartsough. A special treat was a postconcert performance by a young organ student of ACM member Sue Poullette, playing especially for his proud grandfather.

—Naomi Matthees

Southwest Region

Alamo, TX April 29, the winners of the William C. (Bill) Hall Organ Competition were featured in a winners’ recital at St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church on the 2009 John-Paul Buzard organ in San Antonio. The event was sponsored by the chapter, the church, Curtis Bobsin Organbuilder, John-Paul Buzard Organs, and anonymous donors. Pictured are Gregory Santa Croce, first-prize winner in the undergraduate division and Andrew Kenney, first-prize winner in the graduate division (both from the University of North Texas); Tom Dooling, competition administrator and director of music at First Presbyterian Church, San Antonio; and Gary Marks, organist at St. Mark’s, 1995 graduate division winner, and concert organizer. The winners are students of Jesse Eschbach, professor of organ at UNT.

—Jon McMahon

Austin, TX March 12, members gathered at St. Theresa Cath­olic Church (hosts Dan Girardot and Jack Martin) for a workshop on 19th-century American organ music presented by John Schmidt, FAGO.

• April 12, members gathered at Westlake Hills Presbyterian Church for a recital by British organist Clive Driskill-Smith. The church underwent a renovation last summer, resulting in a much-improved acoustic for their 61-rank Casavant organ, which was installed in 2001.

—Jack Martin

Houston, TX April 17, the chapter hosted a student recital at Foundry United Methodist Church. Middle-school, high-school, and college students from the University of Houston, Rice University, and Houston Baptist University played works by Bach, Dupré, Padrini, Messiaen, and Vierne on the church’s 47-stop mechanical-action Hellmuth Wolff organ. The student performers were Andrew Brown, Anne Marie Jurica, John Kirk, Benson Love, Michael Rowlands, Sarah Sabol, Ealee Tuan, Grant Wareham and Jonathan Wells.

—Andrew Bowen

West Region

Kern County, CA April 16, the chapter partnered with the Bakersfield Master Chorale, conducted by Robert Provencio, to present a Hymn Festival with Organ and Brass. Phil Dodson played a preconcert organ recital. The hymns presented included classic European, Sacred Harp and Southern Harmony, spirituals, and Sunday-morning favor­ites. Hymn arrangements were presented by the full Master Chorale, as well as chorale ensembles and soloists, chapter organists, and congregational sing­ing. The FP Brass provided addi­tional accompaniment for some chorale and congregational hymns. Participants included Phil Dodson, Doug Heinrichs, Marcia Krause, Karissa Lystrup, Sue Wagner, and Meg Wise.

—Shirley Foster

Long Beach, CA March 6, the chapter cohosted a recital by organist Tyler Boehmer and tenor David Seay. Boehmer played Mendelssohn’s Organ Sonata II in C, Franck’s Choral in B Minor, and Eden from The Three Gardens by S. Andrew Lloyd. Seay opened with “Ich habe genug” from Bach’s Cantata for the Purification of Mary; his fine, clear tenor voice was well suited to the intricacies of the piece. The program concluded with a masterful presentation of Dupré’s “Crucifixion and Resurrection” from the Symphonie-Passion, which was originally created as an improvisation during a Philadelphia recital at Wanamaker’s department store in 1921.

—David Feit-Pretzer

Los Angeles, CA February 15, the chapter celebrated Presidents’ Day with its traditional organ crawl. The venues included First Church of Christ, Scientist, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Altadena Community Church (all in Altadena), and Westminster Presbyterian Church (Pasadena). Performers included Mark Herman, Edward Murray, David Wheatley, Thompson Howell, Linda Brown, Imre Szilas, Meag­han King, and Mark Husey. Regional Councillor Matthew Burt (Palo Alto) joined participants for the day.

—Karla Devine

San Francisco, CA April 22, the chapter hosted Richard Elliott, principal organist for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, who taught an afternoon workshop (“Ten Secrets of Organ-playing Success”) and gave an evening recital on the Petty-Madden organ at First Congregational Church, Berkeley.

—Elizabeth Forsyth

San Jose, CA March 5, the chapter presented its annual student recital, organized by Diane Keller, at Sunnyvale Presbyterian Church. Despite the rain, about 70 people attended. Students playing were Ruth Kama (student of Margaret Kvamme), Jean Cole, Benjamin Nathan (student of Elisabeth Pintar), Janet Parent (who has studied with Diane Keller), and Curtis “Fjord” Hawthorne. The varied program included works by Langlais, Pachelbel, Bruckner, Yon, Kauffmann, and Bach. We were also treated to Bach’s Sonata in E Minor, BWV 578, for flute and keyboard, ably played by Allison Lohmuller (flute) and Tom Lohmuller (organ). Nicholas Welch, this year’s Frasier Scholarship winner, provided a grand finale for the evening with works by Bach and Boëllmann. A reception was held afterward. The chapter is grateful to the church for the use of its facilities, and to Valerie Sterk for scheduling the practice times.

—Libby Codd

Southern Nevada April 8, the chapter presented Jens Korndörfer in recital at Doc Rando Hall, University of Nevada–Las Vegas. His program featured works 
by Tournemire, Bach, Muffat, Brahms, Strauss, and Reger, plus his extraordinary transcription for organ of the Andante con moto movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5. Korndörfer, a triple prize winner in the prestigious Canadian International Organ Competition, played with accuracy, great security, musicality, and verve, utilizing the colorful resources of the Maurine Jackson Smith Beckerath organ. He responded to the standing ovation with an encore: Louis Vierne’s Carillon de Westminster. A festive reception followed the program.

—Dorothy Young Riess

Seattle, WA April 23, 22 students enjoyed a day of organ activities at a Pedals, Pipes & Pizza event organized by Rita Stoess. In the morning, the students met at Edmonds United Methodist Church, where they viewed a short video on the evolution of the pipe organ and listened to an introduction to the pipe organ by Henry Lebedinsky. Next, the students divided into groups and rotated through three mini-workshops: an organ demonstration by EUMC organist Hyun-Ja Choi, a demonstration of the pipe families by David Lepse, and an introduction to the harpsichord by Henry Lebedinsky. Following a pizza lunch, the students divided into smaller groups; each visited two different churches, where they received group lessons and played piano pieces they had prepared on two organs. Churches and teachers for the afternoon lessons were EUMC (David Spring), Holy Rosary Catholic Church (Beth Fuhriman), Trinity Lutheran Church–Lynnwood (Norma Aamodt-Nelson), and Edmonds Lutheran Church (David Lepse). The students then returned to EUMC to receive their certificates and a packet of material that included The Young Person’s Guide to the Pipe Organ, a list of organ teachers, and items donated by local organ companies. Each student also received a small wooden pipe, compliments of the chapter.

—Rita Stoess

Tacoma, WA April 9, the chapter hosted its annual joint meeting with the Seattle chapter at the shop of Paul Fritts and Company Organ Builders in Parkland. The four-manual, 70-stop organ being built for the University of Notre Dame Basilica stood partially completed on the shop floor. Paul Fritts described the project and explained many details about the organ, with improvised demonstrations of the reed and flue stops present­ly playing by David Dahl and Mel Butler. After the formal presentation, members could play the organ themselves and tour the shop, with Fritts staff describing the many intriguing organbuilding processes.

• April 25, the chapter met at Christ Episcopal Church for a lecture-demonstration by Carlton Monroe on the creative possibilities for integrating Bach cantatas in present-day worship services. Monroe is director of music at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Terrace Park (Cincinnati), Ohio, where he leads a monthly Vespers series centered around Bach cantatas. His lecture showed many ways the cantatas can be made accessible with a variety of instrumentations and singers, leading to a superb musical resource for spirituality, outreach, and education. A vocal octet and instrumentalists from Pacific Lutheran University, directed by Brian Galante with Paul Tegels (organ continuo), illustrated the lecture with excerpts from several cantatas.

—Mark Brombaugh

Singapore March 15, chapter members and friends presented a musical event titled “Season’s Pipings: Lent and Easter” at Queenstown Lutheran Church. Performers contributed various organ solo pieces (by J.S. Bach, Mary McDonald, Brahms, Bédard, Diane Bish) and hymns; other instrumentalists and vocalists included Peter Crossley (cello), Tan Thiam Hee (trombone), Joanna Paul (mezzo-soprano). The evening’s recital was followed by a tea reception.

—Yap Wai Hoong

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