January 2012 Newsletter

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The Opus – January 2012 – PDF file

Gerre Hancock to lead Master Class January 23, 2012

Date: Monday, January 23, 2012
Event: Organ Master Class with Gerre Hancock
Location: Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis (West entrance)
4431 Lindell Boulevard
St. Louis, Missouri 63108
Time: 6:30 PM – Dinner in Boland Hall behind cathedral, Newstead & Maryland
7:30 Master Class in the cathedral (enter through the west doors off the parking lot between the school and cathedral)
Host: Dr. Horst Buchholz
Cost: $10 for dinner
Reservations Kathleen Bolduan (314-725-1251 or kathleen.bolduan@gmail.com)
(Please confirm reservation by January, 18)
Driving Directions:
From I-64/US Route 40 East/Westbound and I-44 East/Westbound-: Exit at Kingshighway North. Go north on Kingshighway to Lindell Blvd. Turn RIGHT (east) onto LIndell. The Cathedral is several blocks east on the left. Parking is available in the lot behind the cathedral, on Maryland behind the cathedral, and on Lindell Blvd.

Gerre Hancock, one of America’s most highly acclaimed concert organists and choral directors, will lead a Master Class at the January 23, 2012 Chapter meeting at the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis, (4431 Lindell Boulevard, St. Louis, Missouri 63108). Please make arrangements to join your colleagues for a catered dinner at 6:30 PM in Boland Hall adjacent to and behind the cathedral followed by the Master Class in the Cathedral Basilica at 7:30 PM. For the pro-gram, enter the cathedral through the West entrance nearest Boland Hall. Please make your dinner reservations ($10/person) with Kathleen Bolduan via e-mail kathleen.bolduan@gmail.com or by phone at 314-725-1251 by January 18, 2012. Master class participants will include three local organists and will feature the music of Bach, Mendelssohn, and Sowerby. We eagerly invite you to join us for this evening of insight and enlightenment as we observe, listen and learn from one of the most esteemed pedagogues of our time.

Dr. Hancock will be presenting a concert on the previous afternoon, January 22, 2012 at 2:30 PM as part of the Cathedral Concerts series. Tickets are $12 and the St. Louis AGO Chapter will have a designated seating area for the concert. Dr. Gerre Hancock is professor of Organ and Sacred Music at The University of Texas at Austin, where he and Dr. Judith Hancock direct the Organ Performance and Sacred Music Center programs; they teach organ and are developing a curriculum for the study of Sacred Music. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Hancock held the position of Organist and Master of Choristers at Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue in New York City where, for more than thirty years, he set a new standard for church music in America. Dr. Hancock received his Bachelor of Music degree from The University of Texas at Austin and his Master of Sacred Music degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York from which he received the Unitas Distinguished Alumnus Award. A recipient of a Rotary Foundation Fellowship, he also studied in Paris and during this time was a finalist at the Munich International Music Competitions. His organ study has been with E. William Doty, Robert Baker, Jean Langlais and Marie-Claire Alain.

A Fellow of the American Guild of Organists, Gerre Hancock has been a member of its National Council and is a founder and past president of the Association of Anglican Musicians. He has served on the faculty of The Juilliard School in New York City and taught improvisation on a visiting basis at the Institute of Sacred Music, Yale University in New Haven, CT, and The Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. In 1981 he was appointed a Fellow of the Royal School of Church Music and in 1995 was appointed a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists.

Gerre Hancock has received honorary Doctor of Music degrees from the Nashotah House Seminary, and The University of the South at Sewanee, Tennessee. In May 2004 he was awarded the Doctor of Divinity degree (Honoris causa) from The General Theological Seminary in New York. He is listed in “Who’s Who in America,” and his biography appears in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd edition. In 2004 he was honored in a ceremony at Lambeth Palace in London where he was presented the Medal of the Cross of St. Augustine by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Gerre Hancock’s consummate skill is clearly apparent in his concert appearances. Possessing a masterly interpretive ability, he is an artist of taste, warmth, perception and style. A featured recitalist and lecturer at numerous regional conventions of the American Guild of Organists and at national conventions of the Guild in Philadelphia, Cleveland, Boston, Washington DC, Detroit, Houston and New York City, he also represented the AGO as recitalist at the Centenary Anniversary of the Royal College of Organists in London. Considered the finest organ improviser in America, Dr. Hancock has been heard in recital in many cities throughout the United States, Europe, South Africa, and Japan. On occasion he performs in duo recitals with his wife, Judith Hancock.

Compositions by Dr. Hancock are published by Oxford University Press. His compositions for organ and chorus are widely performed and his textbook, Improvising: How to Master the Art, is used by musicians throughout the country. He has recorded for Gothic Records, Decca/Argo, Koch International and Priory Records, both as a conductor of The St. Thomas Choir and as a soloist.

— Dr. Bill Wade, CAGO

From the St. Louis Chapter Dean…


There is life after Christmas! By the time you are reading this issue of The Opus, all of us will have managed to survive another hectic music schedule and will be breathing a sigh of relief—a reason to celebrate! Here is something to think about–100 Titles for 100 Years.

In the early fall, I was having a sparkling conversation with Barbara Harbach, distinguished professor and composer at the University of Missouri, St. Louis. In the midst of the discourse, our thoughts turned to accessible organ music. On occasion, most organists have a desire, if not a dire need, for literature that requires minimal preparation and sounds fantastic. As part of our 100th anniversary, Barbara suggested that we compile and publish a list of 100 easy and accessible organ pieces. What a splendid idea! Our Executive Committee was thrilled with Barbara’s suggestion and we are now in the beginning phase of this project.

This project requires your help. We are asking our membership to make submissions. Titles can be e-mailed to opusSLAGO@gmail.com. Anyone not having access to e-mail may send submissions to Henry Evans, 404 South Long St., Caseyville, IL 62232. With your submission, please include the following: title, composer, publisher and product number. The work should be currently in print. You may submit more than one title. Our goal is 100 titles. The deadline is January 31, 2012. The titles will be compiled and published on our website. Paper copies will also be available.

— Henry Evans, Dean

KU Italian Organ Study Tour

100 Years poco a poco

From May 16-28, 2012 the University of Kansas will sponsor an organ study tour of Italy. This tour is open to anyone. It will be directed by Professor Michael Bauer working in conjunction with the noted Italian organist Francesco Cera. The tour will focus on restored Renaissance and Baroque instruments. There will be ample time available to take in the art and architecture of the various cities. Sites include Rome, Rieti, Assisi, Siena, Florence, Bologna, Mantova, and Venice. For further information see www.organ.ku.edu or write mbauer@ku.edu.

Upcoming Concerts

Saturday, January 21 — 7:30 p.m.
The Doane College Choir of Nebraska will present a concert at Second Presbyterian Church, 4501 Westminster Place, St. Louis, MO 63108. For further information, call 314-367-0366 The concert is free and open to the public.

January 22, 2012 – 10:15
Traditional Worship Service Elise LaBarge, soprano . Webster Groves Presbyterian Church 45 West Lockwood Ave., Webster Groves, MO 63119 Contact Shawn Portell, Director of Music Ministries/Sr. Organist

Friday, February 3, 2012
– 7:30 p.m. 7th Annual Valentine Concert featuring MUSIC OF ‘FIDDLER ON THE ROOF’ excerpts performed by members of St. Paul Music Ministry. Public invited to attend. Freewill offering. St. Paul UCC Activity Center, 115 West ‘B’ Street, Belleville, IL 618-233-3303

Sunday, February 12 – 4:00 p.m.
The Cornet Chop Suey Jazz Band will present a concert. The seven-member band plays jazz, swing, blues, and more. Second Presbyterian Church, 4501 Westminster Place, St. Louis, MO 63108. For further information, call 314-367-0366. The concert is free and open to the public.

Friday, February 24, 2012
– 7:30 p.m. COTTEY COLLEGE WOMEN’S CHOIR & DANCERS In Concert. Public invited to attend. Freewill offering. St. Paul UCC Sanctuary, 115 West ‘ B’ Street, Belleville, IL 618-233-3303

Sunday, February 26 — 9:00 and 10:15
Worship Services. Chloe and Stevie Gonzalez, Worship Dancers. Webster Groves Presbyterian Church, 45 West Lockwood Ave. , Webster Groves, MO 63119. Contact: Shawn Portell, Director of Music Ministries/Sr. Organist.

Positions Available


St. Mark Presbyterian Church, 601 Claymont Drive, Ballwin, Missouri is seeking an organist. Position will become available in January, 2012. St. Mark has a 28 rank Quimby organ. The key duties and responsibilities are: select and present music for the Prelude, Offertory and Postlude; accompany hymns for two Sunday worship services; accompany choirs/soloists as needed during rehearsals and worship services; provide music for other services such as weddings, funerals and memorial services, as requested. Please send resume with references to: beckster918@yahoo.com. For further information or questions please contact the church office at 636-394-2233.

SECOND ANNUAL JANUARY JUBILEE Day-Long Conference in Albuquerque, N.Mex., January 28, 2012 Designed to Support and Inspire Musicians in Part-Time Employment

American Guild of Organists (AGO), through its Committee on Musicians in Part-Time Employment, is presenting its second annual JANUARY JUBILEE, a day-long conference on Saturday, January 28, 2012, at First Presbyterian Church, Albuquerque, N.Mex. The nondenominational musicians’ conference will be a festival of workshops that will focus on organ and choral repertoire, transitioning piano to organ, service planning and playing, the digital organ, and public and pastoral relations—all designed to improve the skills of organists working in part-time church positions. Generous support for the conference is provided by Rodgers Instruments Corporation.

The cost to attend the conference is $15, which includes a box lunch. All who are working in part-time positions are encouraged to attend: students, new organists, members of the AGO or denominational music organizations—all are welcome. Membership in the AGO is not required in order to attend. A complimentary six-month membership in the Guild will be offered to non-members as an added benefit for their participation. Complete conference information and registration are available online. The conference registration deadline is January 24, 2012.

F. Anthony Thurman, DMA, Director/Development & Communications
American Guild of Organists
National Headquarters and THE AMERICAN ORGANIST Magazine
475 Riverside Drive, Suite 1260
New York, NY 10115
212-870-2310 or 212-870-2311 Ext. 4308 (Direct)
FAX: 212-870-2163 E-Mail: fathurman@agohq.org