I recently had opportunities to hear five delightful young maestras play at an AGO scholarship recital, this evening. And not one of them could possibly be called a "Left-foot Linda." If people like these young ladies are the future of the organ, then it's in good hands.
This evening, I attended an AGO scholarship recital, featuring five young ladies, ranging in age from a seventh grader (!) to a college freshman, the recipients of the Orange County AGO Chapter's annual scholarships. They performed on the 3-manual Cassavant organ at Concordia University, Irvine.
First on the program was Jennie Kacsir, who played the "Fanfare," Op. 85, by C.S. Lang, "Wenn wir in hoechsten Noeten sein," BWV 641, by Bach, and the "Dialogue sur les Grands jeux" by Francois Couperin. Second was Athalie dela Cena, who played "Da Jesus an der kreuzes" by Samuel Scheidt, "Verso in e minor" by Domenico Zipoli, and the Fugue in g minor, BWV 558, by Bach. Third was Carley Engle, who played the "Verso in g minor" by Zipoli, "Christus der uns selig macht" by Dupre, and the Prelude and Fugue in F, BWV 556, by Bach. She was followed by Betty Lee, who played "Was Gott tut, das is Wohlgetan," by Pachelbel, "Basse et Dessus de Trompette" by Louis-Nicolas Clerambault, and the Prelude and Fugue in C, BWV 553, by Bach. Finally, (and I thought she deserved a standing ovation) Rachel Parker played the Bach Prelude in g minor, BWV 558, Alice Jordan's setting of "Amazing Grace," and the Toccata Brevis of Daniel Gawthrop, which included (near the end) a fast pedal solo that had my head lunging forward, my eybrows shooting up, and my jaw hitting the floor. (In other words, the pedal solo was exciting, flawless, and totally unexpected.) ;-)
If kids like these are the future of the organ, then I submit that we're in for an organ renaissance.
Copyright © James H. H. Lampert, 1998
Revised Thursday, November 19, 2015
Postscript: The young artists and their teachers are pictured on the October, 1998 issue of "The American Organist."
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