November 2015 TAO Chapter News

Northeast Region

Binghamton, NY

August 3, Roberta Rowland-Raybold, CAGO, played a recital at St. James Episcopal Church in Lake Delaware on the 24-rank Möller (1948)/(Sid) Chase (2005) organ as a benefit for the St. James Choral Scholars Fund. Rowland-Raybold is the newly appointed director of music at First Luther­an Church in Albany. She is past dean of the Binghamton and Oneonta chapters; a former AGO district convener in New York and Pennsylvania; and a published composer of hymn settings, introductions, and reharmonizations, and sacred music for the organ (Augsburg Fortress Press). Her program included works by Callahan, Couperin, Bach, Mendelssohn, Pachelbel, Dvoˇrák, Benoit, and Frescobaldi.

August 15, the chapter held its annual summer outing, organized by Ellie Rugg, in scenic Canandaigua. Twenty-five members gathered in the Finger Lakes town for an organ crawl to two churches (both featuring Parsons organs), a tour of the Parsons Pipe Organ Builders factory, and lunch at the New York Wine and Culinary Center by the lake. Ric Parsons, company president, hosted the visit to each church. United Church boasts a brand new Parsons organ, which was featured on the cover and in the corresponding article in the July issue of TAO. The organ at the Congregational Church is a Parsons rebuild. Denise Morphy, organist there, and Joy Van Riper, organist at United Church, provided background information about their respective instruments, and invited members to the console to play each instrument. At the factory, Ric Par-sons led the tour of the facility. Staff member Peter Geise gave a hands-on workshop on pipe voicing, after which Peter Geise and Chad Snyder demonstrated the 3-D CAD program used by Parsons for designing new and rebuilt organs.

Ric Parson (right) gives a tour of Parsons Organ Builders factory to Binghamton members

Ric Parson (right) gives a tour of Parsons Organ Builders factory to Binghamton members

August 16, Patricia O’Connell and Roberta Rowland-Raybold gave a recital titled “Expectations, Exultations, Exhilarations” at the Old Palatine Church in St. Johnsville. The 1978 Rowland organ there is the last opus of Rowland-Raybold’s father, Robert Rowland. O’Connell, French hornist, is a member of the Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra and the Glimmerglass Festival orchestra in Coopers­town. She is substitute organist at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church (which has a Parsons rebuilt organ) in Owego. The program included pieces for solo horn, solo organ, and horn and organ duet, featuring the music of Bach, Mo­zart, Willan, Lang­lais, Ros­sini, Telemann, Rowland-Raybold, and Guilmant.

—John Holt

Julian Grondahl, Ryan Kennedy, Daniel Ficarri, Nora Dynowski, John King, (dean), and Samuel Chapin (host) at Young Artists Recital

Julian Gröndahl, Ryan Kennedy, Daniel Ficarri, Nora Dynowski, John King, (dean), and Samuel Chapin (host) at Young Artists Recital

Westchester County, NY

September 14, at the Union Church of Pocantico Hills, a Young Art­ists Recital was held, hosted by resident organist Samuel Chapin. Participants were Nora Dynow­ski, Daniel Ficarri, Julian Grondahl, and Ryan Kennedy. Works by Buxtehude, Bruhns, Mendelssohn, and Widor were played. Prior to the recital, concertgoers enjoyed seeing the beautiful stained-glass windows by Chagall and Matisse. A reception followed.

April 26, a Community Hymn Festival was led by AGO President John Walker, accompanied by John King, music minister at Hitchcock Presbyterian Church, Scarsdale. The choir was composed of Guild members and singers from various churches and was joined by an enthusiastic congregation. Hymns were interspersed with lections read by guest pastors and chapter members. King, who is dean of the Westchester chapter, accompanied the singers on the church’s three-manual tracker-action Walker organ. Refreshments were served after the program.

—Joyce Gardner

Mid-Atlantic Region
Potomac, MD Chapter News

Potomac Officers with recitalist Marvin Mills (center): Gerald Piercey, David Haykin, Mary Ann Willow, Brenda Weiser, Ann Bartlow, and David McCahan (photo: John Widmann)

Potomac, MD

August 31, the chapter met at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, Kensington. Marvin Mills presented a program on Music for Worship by African-American Composers, playing excerpts and complete works. Afterward, Ken Lowenberg installed the officers for the chapter, including Ann Bartlow (board), David Haykin (treasurer), David McCahan (secretary), Gerald Piercey (registrar), Brenda Weiser (sub-dean), and Mary Ann Willow (dean).

—Gerald Piercey

Lynchburg, VA

Lynchburg members with George Clark (front, second from left) and recitalist Nathan Laube (third from left)

Lynchburg members with George Clark (front, second from left) and recitalist Nathan Laube (third from left)

November 16, the chapter celebrated member George Clark for his 50 years of service as organist at Court Street United Methodist Church. In honor of Clark and the Lynchburg chapter, the church hosted a members’ recital and tribute to Clark. Participants were Ann Coulter, Bob Blevins, Harvey Huiner, and Ray Weidner. Gordon Betenbaugh presented Clark with a plaque.

• May 30, the chapter hosted a masterclass with Nathan Laube, Eastman School of Music faculty member, at Court Street United Methodist Church. Laube played a recital on May 31 in honor of George Clark.

—Susan C. Batten-Bell

 

Monongahela, WV

July 26, the chapter sponsored a recital and reception for recent West Virginia Wesleyan College graduate Kayoko Funada at First United Methodist Church in Clarksburg. Funada—who studied both organ and piano at WVWC and is now attending Southern Illinois University at Carbondale for a master’s degree in collaborative piano—played works of Bach, Boëllmann, Karg-Elerg, Mendelssohn, and Gigout on the church’s III/70 Phelps-Casavant (1966). The chapter awarded Funada a scholarship for her studies and provided her with a student membership to the Guild.

—Brett Miller

Southeast Region
Atlanta recitalist Hector Olivera at Grace United Methodist Church (photo: Rachel Ficklin)

Atlanta recitalist Hector Olivera at Grace United Methodist Church (photo: Rachel Ficklin)

Atlanta, GA

August 14, the chapter completed a yearlong celebration of its centennial with a rousing recital by organ virtuoso Hector Olivera at Grace United Methodist Church. The evening began with a warm welcome by Sue Goddard, organist at Grace. Olivera delighted the audience with organ selections by Bach, Mozart, Vierne, Guilmant, and others. At the end of his performance, he played an improvisation on two themes that were submitted to him by Sue Mitchell-Wallace, dean. A reception hosted by Thomas McCook, curator of the organ at Grace, followed.

—Rachel Ficklin

Great Lakes Region

Evansville, IN

April 10, the chapter presented a concert by Douglas Reed and the American Brass Quintet, featuring the world premiere of Fantasia by William Bolcom. Commissioned by the Evansville chapter in hon­or of Reed’s ongoing teaching career and funded by grants, friends, colleagues, and family members, Fantasia was presented to a capacity audience at First Presbyterian Church, which houses Fisk Opus 98. The American Brass Quintet worked with hundreds of students from across the region in a three-day mini-residency that culminated in the free concert (see photo on page 34).

—Robert Nicholls

Ann Arbor, MI

The winner of the 2015 Marilyn Mason Young Musician’s Scholarship is Sean Henry Moss of Rochester Hills, student of William Jean Randall. The chapter established the scholarship in 2008 in honor of Mason on the occasion of her 60th year on the faculty of the University of Michigan. This year, the congregation of Emmanuel United Church of Christ in Manchester provided an additional $400 to the scholarship program to honor the long tenure and faithful service of their organist (and chapter member) Susan Goodson. The award will be shared equally by Emily Wheeler (student of Michael Burkhardt) and Maks Jurasek (student of Naki Sung Kripfgans). Maks and Emily shared the 2014 Marilyn Mason Young Musician’s Scholarship to the chapter’s Pipe Organ Encounter Advanced.

—Colin R. Knapp

Holland potluck participants

Holland potluck participants

Holland, MI

In May, the chapter met for its end-of-year potluck at the home of member Gordon Bruns. As it was spring in Michigan, plenty of fresh asparagus and other tasty offerings from the local farmers market were available, and a healthy representation from the chapter enjoyed time to socialize, catch up, and share a meal together. The inclusion of a few of the young­est not-yet-organists from members’ families added some energy, mischief, and youthfulness to the gathering. A bit of four-hand 
piano playing rounded out the evening, which was deemed a success by all in attendance. • In July, the chapter met for a summer gathering in Dean Rhonda Edgington’s backyard, to share desserts and hear her give a talk she was preparing to present the following week at the AGO Great Lakes Regional Convention: “A Dying Breed? Thoughts on Part-time Church Musicians, Small AGO Chapters, and the Future of Our Profession.” Attendees enjoyed the fine Michigan summer weather
—as well as a good collection of cookies, pies, and cakes—and the chance to ruminate on issues, problems, and challenges facing us all as colleagues.

—Rhonda Edgington

North Central Region
River Valley performers (front) Helenka Claypool, Betty Debban, Ruth Hurlburt; (back) Lee Rabe (timpanist), Matthew Penning, Marcia Lofdahl, Steve Berg, Neal Marlple, and Richard Harman (photo: Neal Marlple, and Richard Harman (photo: Neal Marple)

River Valley performers (front) Helenka Claypool, Betty Debban, Ruth Hurlburt; (back) Lee Rabe (timpanist), Matthew Penning, Marcia Lofdahl, Steve Berg, Neal Marlple, and Richard Harman (photo: Neal Marlple, and Richard Harman (photo: Neal Marple)

River Valley, IA

June 28, chapter members performed in their annual Star-Spangled Organ Concert at First Presbyterian Church in Cedar Rapids (Reuter organ) as part of the city’s Freedom Festival. Steve Berg, Helenka Claypool, Betty Debban, Richard Harman, Ruth Hurlburt, Marcia Lofdahl, Neal Mar­ple (host), and Matthew Penning played original and arranged compositions by American composers ranging from Copland and MacDowell to Hammerstein and Sousa.

—Matthew Penning

Ronald Krebs, Fr. Paul Turner, Paul Erickson, Leora Nauta, Jan Kraybill, and Mario Pearson (Greater Kansas City)

Ronald Krebs, Fr. Paul Turner, Paul Erickson, Leora Nauta, Jan Kraybill, and Mario Pearson (Greater Kansas City)

Greater Kansas City, MO

August 23, the Third Annual Festival of French Organ Music was cosponsored by the chapter and the Roman Catholic Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Kansas City (Mario Pearson, music director). Performers included the Trinity Choir from Grace and Holy Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Kansas City, conducted by John Schaefer (director of music and organist at the Episcopal Cathedral). Leora Nauta (organist at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Kansas City, played solo selections and accompanied the Trinity Choir. Solo organists included John T. Dav­ies, Thomas Zachacz (parish musician for Redeemer Lutheran Church, Olathe, Kans.), Ronald Krebs (vice president of the Reu­ter Organ Company and newly appointed interim organist for St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, Kansas City), and Jan Kraybill, FAGO (principal organist for the Dome and Spire Organ Foundation of Independence, Mo., and organ conservator at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City). Other performers included flutist Christina Webster with organist Paul Erickson (organist and director of arts ministry at Parkville Presbyterian Church and artistic director for the Northland Community Choir in Parkville, Mo.), and organist Mario Pearson with the Cathedral Schola Cantorum vocal ensemble of Immaculate Conception Roman Catholic Cathedral, Kansas City. Members of the Cathedral Schola Men Chanters assisted organist Fr. Paul Turner (pastor of St. Anthony Parish, Kansas City).

—Norm Kinnaugh

Southwest Region
Dallas members (front) Kathryn Johnson, Barbara Clark, Charlene Polivka-Dorsey, George Christ, Rebecca Peal-Sonce; (back) Charles Morell, Graham Clarke, Michael Shake, Lee Corbin, Margaret Ball, and Christopher Cooper (photo: William Leazer)

Dallas members (front) Kathryn Johnson, Barbara Clark, Charlene Polivka-Dorsey, George Christ, Rebecca Peal-Sonce; (back) Charles Morell, Graham Clarke, Michael Shake, Lee Corbin, Margaret Ball, and Christopher Cooper (photo: William Leazer)

Dallas, TX

May 18, the chapter held its final program for the year at West Plano Presbyterian, home church of the Rev. Kath­ryn E. Johnson (dean) and the Rev. Dr. David Batchelder (chap­ter chaplain). Following the annual banquet, members shared in an Evensong service featuring the church’s choir and handbell choir with a fitting homily by Batchelder and the installation of newly elected chapter officers for 2015–16. It was the perfect culmination of a well-planned year of programs and concerts.

—William Leazer

West Region
San Diego AGO/Spreckels Scholarship winners

San Diego AGO/Spreckels Scholarship winners

San Diego, CA

May 9, the San Diego AGO/Spreckels Schol­ar­ship Auditions were held at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Judges for the auditions were Timothy Howard, Tom Mueller, and Justin Murphy-Mancini. A total of $3,375 in scholarships was awarded to 19 students. Each student was also given a one-year AGO student membership. The top eight students performed at the Sprec­kels Organ Pavilion in Balboa Park on May 31. Pictured are Miranda Kaack, Reiley Fleisch­ben, John Yokoyama, Suzy Webster, Lauren A., Margaret Campbell, Alex Kramer, and Vin­cent Pham. (photo: Bob Lang)

—Leslie Wolf Robb

Singapore

Recitalist Bejamin Sheen (back row, fourth from right) with sand artist Lawrence Koh (back row, fourth from left) and Singapore members

Recitalist Bejamin Sheen (back row, fourth from right) with sand artist Lawrence Koh (back row, fourth from left) and Singapore members

July 24, organist Benjamin Sheen played his own transcriptions of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, with sand artist Lawrence Koh providing a visual rendition of the “pictures” in tandem with the music. Held at Victoria Concert Hall, this unique partnership was received with thunderous applause by the audience. Sheen’s performance was made possible by a collaboration between the Singapore chapter and the Singapore Symphony Orchestra’s VCH Organ Series. Officially opened in October 1905, Victoria Concert Hall (then known as Victoria Memorial Hall) celebrated its 100th birthday in 2005. It underwent a major renovation in 2010 and reopened in 2014. The hall houses a two-manual, 28-stop Klais organ (1984).

—Yap Wai Hoong

Speak Your Mind

*