After the resounding success of our first Organ Music competition on the theme of 'Organ Music for Quiet Moments', we were delighted to receive so many entries from around the world for our second competition on the theme of 'Organ Music for Joyful Moments' and would like to thank each and every person who entered for your support and interest. The standard was extremely high and made judging very hard - so much so that we have ended up with not five, but SIX, winning entries. We are greatly indebted to Viscount Organ Wales (https://www.viscountorgans.wales/) for sponsoring the prize money for this competition and our outright winner claiming the prize is:
'Jubilation in C', by Wayne L. Wold
Wayne Wold started playing piano at age four and organ at age sixteen, and has played at church nearly every Sunday for the past fifty years. He was born and grew up in northern Minnesota but has lived in Maryland near Washington, D. C. since 1979. The most unique place he served as music director was the chapel at the presidential retreat, Camp David, where he served for seventeen years. You can find more about Wayne via his website.
Wayne's piece was adjudged as follows...."The piece fits the requirements very well and needs only a modest organ and player ... It is a very attractive piece and after looking through the entries I (the judge) was tempted to try this one first and will probably play it in our first service back at my Church!"
A few words from the winning composer
"I am so very pleased and honoured to have been chosen for this award. Snatches of melody are always going through my mind, especially when I am taking a walk, so that is probably where this piece had its beginnings. I improvise a great deal, so that is where I came up with ideas to expand the initial ideas. Let's hope we all have many joyous occasions where we can play the pieces from this collection!" - Wayne L. Wold
We are once again indebted to Jerry Martin for providing us with this wonderful recording of the winning piece, 'Jubilation in C' ...
The five other winning entries (in no particular order!), which will be published with 'Jubilation in C' in an anthology booklet (see below for our special pre-release offer price) are as follows:
'Festivities!', by Phil Lehenbauer
Phil grew up in Ohio, USA, the son of a Lutheran minister father and an organist and pianist mother. He attended The Ohio State University, studying Music Education with trombone as his major instrument, and performing with the Concert Band, the Symphonic Chorus, and the world-famous OSU Marching Band. After graduation, he spent thirty years serving as a public school band director in Ohio, and is now retired in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, playing organ for Shepherd of the Coast Lutheran Church. You can find many of his compositions at his YouTube channel “OrganGuyPhil”. Phil's piece was adjudged as "an attractive and lively dance" and Phil himself says, "During the pandemic, music has been a saviour in helping to deal with the uncertainty, fear and loneliness and all the other feelings we've all experienced. Music brings me joy and I'm hoping this work brings joy and a smile to those who play and hear it!"
'Fete', by Alastair Johnson
Alastair has a Music degree from the University of Southampton and teaching qualifications from the University of Winchester and Bath Spa University and received organ lessons from Jeremy Blandford in Southampton and Roger Bryan at Lincoln Cathedral. He has recently notched up forty happy years teaching Music and running Performing Arts in secondary and middle schools, has sung with choirs at parish and cathedral levels and has been a ‘village’ church musician in deepest Wiltshire for twenty five years. He uses improvisation as an integral part of his work and wanted to convey some of the 'joi de vivre' of later French organ composers and his piece was indeed adjudged to be "a joyful piece with some tricky moments but these are confined to the manuals, so could be of interest to a competent pianist who is still finding their way around an organ pedalboard".
'Paean', by Richard Dunster-Sigtermans
Richard works as an organist, accompanist, conductor and teacher and is a graduate of the RCM and the universities of London and Birmingham, holding a PhD in the performance practice of British organ music. He taught in independent schools for over 30 years and was until 2012 Director of Music at Rugby School; he is Director of Music of Rugby Parish Church and ABRSM’s Chief Theory Moderator, and examines on their practical, diploma and jazz panels. 'Paean' evokes the world of French toccatas and was written for an adult pupil who loves the thrill of loud and energetic pieces. Richard revelled in the challenge of keeping within the three minutes and tailoring the piece for an organist of moderate standard and his piece was adjudged to fit the brief perfectly being "certainly bright and cheerful and not very difficult."
'Fanfare', by Leigh Harrison
Leigh Harrison has composed music for almost all his life and first studied composition with John Howard in Durham. At Leeds University, he studied with James Brown and Philip Wilby where he obtained his 1st Class Honours degree in Music and was chosen by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies to attend his international composition master class at the Dartington Summer School. Leigh then studied with Edward Cowie at Lancaster University where he obtained his Ph.D. in composition. After a lifetime of music teaching, Leigh has now retired to Kielder in Northumberland where he continues to compose. The "Fanfare for Organ" is the first movement of an organ suite that Leigh wrote for the engagement of his son, Chris. Leigh is delighted that it was chosen to be published and is extremely thankful for this opportunity. The judge commented: "As the composer acknowledges, there are some Mathias influences in the outer fanfare moments...".
'Jubilate', by Graham Twist
(You may recognise this Composer's name from last year's competition, when his 'Idyll' was chosen as one of the winning entries and has become immensely popular!) Born in West Yorkshire, England, in 1958, music has been important throughout Graham's life. Whilst not a trained musician, Graham has been passionate about all things organ from the age of eight, but had to wait until semi-retirement to return to the joy of playing the organ and rediscovering music that he had first performed many years ago. . . as well as attempting to learn some new repertoire. Now fully retired, 'Jubilate' was composed in February 2021 for the competition and is a celebratory response to the growing hope that the Covid vaccinations will enable people to once again take delight in greater social interaction, especially when sharing in the joy of live music both in church and the concert hall. Graham's piece was adjudged to be "Triumphant, with an attractive melody".
The Anthology booklet will be released later this month priced at £14.95, but we have made it available only via our website at the pre-order price of just £11.95 until 22nd March 2021 ... Click on the cover page below to take you to the order page ....
If you have any queries, please just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Look out for our next competition later in the year for Organ Music for Christmas!
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