Ronald G. Pogorzelski and Lester D. Yankee Annual Competition

Frederick Hohman, is the 2019 Pogorzelski-Yankee awarded composer. His commissioned composition, The Organ Icons, was premiered March 3, 2019 at 4PM, at Daniel DiCicco Hall, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  He is an accomplished music producer and founder of the Pro Organo label.  He attended the Eastman School of Music where he earned the Performer’s Certificate, Mus. B. (distinction), MM, and DMA degrees.  Mr. Hohman is an active recitalist performing throughout the USA and has toured more than once in Finland and Australia. The Organ Icons was performed by Katelyn Emerson, 2016 AGO NYACOP First Place winner. The premiere event included a pre-concert discussion with the composer and organist.










The Pogorzelski-Yankee Competition and Indiana University of Pennsylvania

P-Y-Award-1140x500-300x131Promising to add a new major composition to the organ repertoire every year in perpetuity, the new Pogorzelski-Yankee competition owes its existence to the astonishing generosity of two individuals. When Ronald G. Pogorzelski and Lester D. Yankee decided to give the largest bequest in AGO history they clearly sought to make a lasting impact upon the Guild. The bequest included the funding of college scholarships for organ study, the annual new music competition, and the donation and maintenance of their beloved R. J. Brunner & Company tracker house organ shown here in its former music room setting. Through a competitive search process the house organ has since found a permanent home at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). For the annual new music competition, Messrs. Pogorzelski and Yankee stipulated only that the winning work be composed for and performed on the  organ in its new home.

The organ console in its new home at Indiana University of Pennsylvania appears on the left.  See the specifications (N.B. on the Great division, the Gemshorn 8′ has been replaced by the Principal 8′.) Rules for the competition will vary. The first three competitions called for a proposal for a commission of a piece 10-12 minutes in length playable on the Pogorzelski-Yankee Organ; there were no restrictions in regard to compositional style. Award: $10,000 cash prize; premiere performance on the Ronald G. Pogorzelski and Lester D. Yankee Organ at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, in March of each year.

Awarded Composers

Each competition cycle extends over 2 years. The next cycle began in mid-2019 with the publication of the rules in the May-19 issue of The American Organist Magazine. A winner will be announced in late 2019 with a mid-2020 delivery date for the commissioned piece. The piece will be premiered the following March or April, 2021 at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

2020 Composer, Henry Martin of New York, New York was awarded the 2020 commission. His piece, It’s About Time, will be premiered May 17, 2020 at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
2019 Composer, Fred Hohman – Listen to The Organ Icons and a discussion with Fred Hohman.
2018 Composer, Chris LaRosa – Listen to Monument and discussion with Dr. LaRosa.
Listen to Monument in an orchestral version!
2017 Composer, Christopher Adler – Listen to Construct: for organ and a discussion with Professor Adler.
2016 Composer, Claude Baker – Listen to  Sept Hommages and a half-hour interview with Dr. John Levey.

Committee on New Music
Louise Mundinger, MM, Director  Email
David J. Hurd, Jr., MusD  Email
Carol Feather Martin, MM Email
Alexander Meszler, MM  Email

Eileen Hunt, AAGO, DMA, ex officio (Vice President/Councillor for Competitions and New Music)  Email
AGO Headquarters Email