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Last updated November 4, 2023.
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.
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. In past years, chapter members have also formed the AGO Chamber Choir which performs a concert of the works of a major composer with chamber orchestra.
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 Justin Smith, Membership Coordinator, at Email.
The mission of the American Guild of Organists is to foster a thriving community of musicians who share their knowledge and inspire passion for the organ.
The vision of the American Guild of Organists is to engage, support, and uplift every organist.
Greetings from the Dean
Dear Chapter Members and Friends,
A number of you have RSVP’ed for our upcoming workshop with Dr. Tim Olsen. If you have not yet done so, please RSVP to me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The title of the two-hour workshop is “Healthful Technique.” Dr. Olsen is a wonderful performer whose relaxed technique yields beautiful results in all styles of playing, from pre-Baroque to contemporary repertoire. He is also a skilled pedagogue who can quickly assess organists’ potential problems and tension points, suggesting solutions which eliminate tension and pain.
If you have ever wanted to improve your trills, fast passages, or overall physical ease at the organ, this workshop is for you! Dr. Olsen will work with individuals during the workshop. If you would like to volunteer for this, please prepare a piece or part of a piece to play.
Here are the details (previously published in our October Newsletter):
Date: Saturday, November 11th, 2023
Time: 10am – 12pm
Place: First Presbyterian Church, Wilmington (lower crypt)
Attendees who wish to have lunch afterwards will proceed to The Pilot House, on the Riverwalk in Wilmington. The lunch will be “Dutch treat.”
To RSVP for the lunch, please email email@example.com by Wednesday, November 8th.
Dr. Olsen will play a recital on the historic Skinner organ in the Sanctuary at First Presbyterian. This is a free concert, no RSVP needed, no tickets needed. Come and bring some friends — it will be spectacular!
Date: Sunday, November 12th, 2023
Place: First Presbyterian Church, Wilmington
I hope to see you at the workshop and/or the concert on November 11/12. After that, no events until our January 9th gathering. Enjoy the flurry and the glory of December and Advent/Christmas in your churches!
Nancy Novelly, Dean
NOVEMBER AGO CHAPTER EVENT
Timothy Olsen Bio
A performer, teacher, and Lutheran Cantor, Timothy Olsen intertwines his passion for musical excellence throughout these three areas.
In his solo organ recital performances for churches, AGO chapters, and universities throughout the United States, Dr. Olsen explores the many colors and sounds of each unique pipe organ on which he performs. He matches repertoire to instrument while creating and performing eclectic programs that excite, inspire, and uplift audiences by presenting works that are both familiar and new. His most recent performances have taken him to St. Patrick’s Cathedral (NY), Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral (Raleigh, NC), Augustana Lutheran (W. St. Paul, MN), Methuen Memorial Music Hall, Duke University, and Cornell University. He has performed across the United States and in Ireland, and his recordings on the NAXOS and Raven labels have been heard on American Public Media’s Pipedreams, WXXI’s With Heart and Voice, and WCPE’s Great Sacred Music. He frequently collaborates with trumpeter Judith Saxton including a recent independently released album, Landfall, as well as on large choral works including Duruflé’s Messe “Cum jubilo” and Requiem, Dubois’ The Seven Last Words of Christ, and Gabriel Fauré’s Requiem.
As Kenan [Associate] Professor of Organ at UNC School of the Arts and Associate Professor of Organ at Salem College (a joint faculty position), Dr. Olsen enjoys working with a wide range of students—from those just beginning their study at the organ to high level graduate students. Meeting the students where they are in their musical journey, he guides them in developing their technique and artistry to attain their goals as performers whether that be in the concert hall, the sanctuary, or elsewhere. Dr. Olsen’s students have won numerous regional competitions, and have gained entrance into some of the most prestigious organ programs in the country.
Dr. Olsen’s desire to expose the organ and its repertoire to young students as well as to wide-ranging audiences has led him to collaborate with local colleagues organizing an annual “Sounds of the Summer” organ recital series in Winston-Salem, NC, as well as an annual Salem Bach Festival for which he plays organ and harpsichord. His desire to engage younger organists has led him to create and host an annual Middle School/High School Organ Festival and Competition at UNCSA and Salem College for the past twelve years. He has also directed two Pipe Organ Encounters (most recently in 2022), served on the faculty of several POEs and POEs-Advanced, and has hosted several summer organ academies for young organists at UNCSA.
A life-long learner, Dr. Olsen continues to explore the instrument’s vast range of repertoire. His current research area focuses on that of the baroque era and the role of improvisation in organ repertoire and pedagogy. During his fall 2022 sabbatical, he pursued further improvisation study with world-renowned improviser and pedagogue William Porter, with the goal of embedding more improvisation into the curriculum at UNCSA and Salem College, as well as into his work as Cantor at Augsburg Lutheran Church.
Currently serving as Cantor (Organist/Music Director) at Augsburg Lutheran Church in Winston-Salem, NC, Dr. Olsen lives out his Lutheran heritage through sacred music. In his role as Cantor, he directs two adult choirs, plays for two weekly services, oversees an intern program of organ and choral students, and arranges guest concerts for the congregation and community.
Dr. Olsen is a graduate of Concordia College in Moorhead, MN (BM) and the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY (MM, DMA). He currently resides in Pfafftown, NC with his wife, three boys, and their six-pound Chihuahua, Milo Bjørn.
(from AGO Headquarters)
An invoice is created for your next membership year. “Renew Dues and Subscriptions” appears on your ONCARD menu. Your status changes to “invoiced not paid” on your chapter’s member roster. A renewal notice is sent from headquarters, either by email or postal mail depending on your preferences.
Two Months Before Your Expiration Date
A second renewal notice is sent from headquarters, either by email or postal mail depending on your preferences.
One Month Before Your Expiration Date
A third renewal notice is sent from headquarters by postal mail.
Two Weeks Before Your Expiration Date
Chapter officers receive notification of all members who have not yet renewed.
Bill Due Date
AGO dues payments are due on the last day of the month before expiration.
Expiration Date: Always the First of the Month
A membership expires, and a two week grace period begins at the time of expiration.
Two Weeks After the Expiration Date
The grace period ends and memberships are marked canceled. If a payment is received after this date, delivery of The American Organist may be delayed.
Chapter Events 2023-2024
November 11/12, 2023: Workshop and Organ Recital by Dr. Timothy Olsen
Place: First Presbyterian Church, Wilmington
Saturday, November 11: workshop on “Healthful Technique,” 10am-noon, Noack tracker organ in Chapel, followed by lunch (Dutch treat) at the Pilot House
Sunday, November 12: recital on Skinner organ in sanctuary, 5:00pm
(December 2023: no event; Merry Christmas!)
January 9th, 2024: Dinner meeting & Members Recital (Lent/Easter preludes & postludes)
Place: Trinity United Methodist, 1403 Market Street, Wilmington
Sunday, February 25, 2024: Organ Recital by Abigail Crafton
Young organist Abigail Crafton is the 16-yr-old winner of the national AGO Quimby Competition
Place: St. Matthew’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, 612 South College Rd, Wilmington, NC 28403
Time: 4:00pm, with reception following
(March 2024: No Event; Happy Easter!)
Sunday, April 21st, 2024, 4pm: organ recital by Brendan Conner and Kira Garvie, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 16 N. 16th St., Wilmington, Reception will follow.
June 2, 2024: Dinner & Social,
Sunday evening at Julia Walker-Jewell’s home
Time and details TBD
Click on the following links for the most current concert information!
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 Justin Smith, Membership Coordinator, at email. You may also join online by visiting https://www.agohq.org/oncard-login/.
Rose Hill Methodist Church
The church musician/pianist plays the piano and or other related instruments (in his/her skill set) for all worship services and special services such as Ash Wednesday. This position is part-time.
1. Plays for weekly and special worship services directed by the church.
2. Assist the pastor in selecting music for the worship services.
3. Maintain reporting of CCLI related licensing requirements from various worship services.
4. Help the congregation in singing the worship music.
5. Plays for funerals upon request if available.
6. Plays for weddings upon request if available.
The Church Musician works with the minister to provide music for worship services, and is supervised by the SPRC.
Click here to read about the new church building.
Director of Music/Organist (Permanent Position)
Holy Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, Abington, PA
Holy Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, Abington, PA, is seeking applicants for the position of Director of Music/Organist. The Director of Music plans and coordinates the overall ministry of music at Holy Trinity, working closely with the Pastor. This includes playing the organ, directing choirs and ensembles, and leading and teaching liturgical music and hymns in the congregation. Salary will be in the range $37,000–$47,000, based on education and experience. Two weeks’ paid vacation, pension, and health care with employee contribution are included. Candidates must pass a background check and obtain the child abuse clearance mandated by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Submit resume, professional references, and contact information to Sherry Breslin, firstname.lastname@example.org. A full job description is available at https://www.holytrinity.net/open-positions/director-of-music/.
Holy Trinity is a congregation of the North American Lutheran Church (thenalc.org). Our mission is to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ, worshipping, making disciples, and serving in his name. Our worship is Biblical, liturgical, and traditional, grounded in the Holy Scriptures as reflected in the Lutheran Book of Worship (1978) and drawing from other classic and contemporary Lutheran resources. Video recordings of our most recent services may be viewed at holytrinity.net. We have a 20-rank, 2-manual Reuter organ, installed in 1963. An additional 6-rank gallery division was added in 2016, the console was rebuilt with solid-state equipment in 2001, and the reservoirs were releathered in 2022. We also have a 5-octave set of Schulmerich handbells; a 3-octave set of handchimes; a Yamaha U3 upright piano in the sanctuary and four pianos elsewhere; a Yamaha P60 electronic piano; a set of 3 Orff timpani; and digital steeple bells installed by Elderhorst Bells.
Shallotte Presbyterian Church
Director of Music
Shallotte Presbyterian Church located in the town of Shallotte, NC in Southeastern, NC (Brunswick County) announces a staff opening for the position of Organist/Pianist. The Organist/Pianist is responsible for two weekly traditional services (8:30 and 11:00 AM) and accompanying the Chancel Choir at weekly rehearsals. Additional special services include Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Christmas Eve, etc. The church owns a Rogers Trillium 928 Organ and Baby Grand Piano.
We also have an opening for a Director of Music. The Director of Music is responsible for selecting and planning music for weekly traditional Sunday services and directing the Chancel Choir and Handbell choir at weekly rehearsals. The director also plans choral music for special days within the church calendar which include Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Christmas Eve, etc. There may be occasional additional rehearsals for special services and other work with soloists, ensembles, etc.
To apply for the position, submit a cover letter, resume and supporting materials to our email, email@example.com.
Church of the Good Shepherd, Episcopal
Church of the Good Shepherd Episcopal is seeking a Music Director.
Church of the Good Shepherd is a 112 year old historic church at 515 Queen St,. Wilmington, NC.
The congregation employs supply priests, with eucharists at a 10 am service. We are a traditional, welcoming, and diverse group and utilize the 1982 hymnal extensively.
The Music Director would provide leadership for the music program and manage a small choir. It is preferred to have a Wed. evening choir practice. We recently installed a 3-manual Allen electronic organ and have a George Steck grand piano in excellent condition.
This is a contract position, with no benefits. Regular bonus compensation is in place. Compensation for the 10 hour weekly position is negotiable, based on education, and years of experience. Episcopal service and music experience is preferred.
Please contact Dr. Peter Perschbacher, Senior Warden at 1-870-534-0650, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Zion Episcopal Church
Contact: The Reverend Alan Neale (215-510-1518, email@example.com)
Zion is looking for an organist to lead us in Episcopal worship. The weekly congregation is now about 35 and shows real signs of growth. The congregation is welcoming and appreciative of ministry and service.
Sunday worship at 10am, introducing small choir to hymns etc. at 9:30am.
Probably, but not necessarily, midweek services such as All Saints, Ascension Day, Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday and Christmas Eve.
Probably, but not necessarily, two-three Sundays each month.
The salary range is $12,500-$13,000
Darlington Presbyterian Church, EPC
Darlington Presbyterian Church, EPC is located in the lovely county seat of Darlington. Founded in 1827, Darlington Presbyterian Church has 400 plus members who enjoy a rich history of worship, ministry, and missions. Our worship services are centered on the Word of God as we celebrate our Savior through a meaningful liturgy in the Reformed Tradition. DPC offers a live-stream 11am morning worship that is musically led by the Chancel Choir, is accompanied by a 1988, 3 manual, Schantz Pipe Organ, and is supported with an occasional soloist, Handbell Choir, and other instrumental groups. The Chancel Choir presents each year two seasonal offerings, a Maundy Thursday service and a Christmas Festival of Lessons and Carols. Additionally, DPC continues its annual tradition of holding two Christmas Eve services for the community.
Church Organist / Choir Accompanist (PT)
Darlington Presbyterian Church, EPC is seeking a committed Christian whose desire it is to use his/her God given talents in service to the Lord and His people. This position requires skill in organ performance as a soloist, and in piano and organ performance as an accompanist to choirs, instrumentalists, soloists, and congregational singing. The ability to sight read and to play choral parts are needed skills as well. Salary: $15,000 (plus $2,000 for traveling expenses)
Responsibilities include playing for the weekly 11am Sunday morning worship service which includes pre-worship rehearsals with the Chancel Choir and other musicians as needed; accompanying Wednesday evening choir rehearsals with the Children’s and Chancel Choirs; playing for seasonal worship services and their respective rehearsals; and being available to play for the weddings, funerals and memorial services of church members and their families, for which additional compensation is given.
Interested candidates should email a cover letter and resume to Dr. Teresa Irwin, the Director of Music Ministries, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dean: Nancy Novelly – Email
Subdean and Program Coordinator: Bill Weisser – Email
Secretary: Bob Norem – Email
Treasurer and Membership Coordinator: Justin Smith – Email
Member at Large: Martha Hayes – Email
Member at Large and Chaplain: Barrett Ingram – Email
Member at Large: Julia Walker Jewell – Email