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Organ Competition To Focus On Younger Performers

Posted By: Catherine Good | Posted on: 04-25-2014

Rodgers Instruments Corporation is pleased to announce that the Rodgers North American Classical Organ Competition has been revamped and will have a new focus on young performers starting in 2015.

When the competition began in 2011, it was open to organists up to the age of 35. Now, with the spectacular performances that the judges have seen from younger musicians during the past several years, it will become an event exclusively for 14- to 22-year-olds.

Audition recordings will be accepted starting this fall. The deadline to submit audition recordings is January 5, 2015. Judges will select finalists based on the recordings, and the winners will be determined after a final round of performances on May 5, 2015.

Equally exciting is the change to a new venue for the competition. Finalists will perform in the Music Theater of the stunning Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona. MIM is dedicated to offering a shared experience of the history of musical instruments throughout the world to visitors who tour its 200,000 square feet of exhibit space displaying instruments from 200 countries and regions.

Rodgers also announced that the first place award in the competition will be named in honor of Dr. Frederick Swann. “Dr. Swann stands as an incredible example of lifelong dedication to excellence in artistry as well as organist education through hiswork with the AGO,” said Rodgers President Duane Kuhn. “It’s appropriate to recognize his vision and leadership by presenting the highest award in this competition in his honor.”

Cash awards for competition winners are $3,000 for first place, $2,000 for second and $1,500 for third. Winners of past competitions have gone on to appear as recitalists playing for audiences around the country.

The competition will not be held in 2014 due to preparations involved in the transition to the new format.

For the first round of the competition, applicants will submit recordings of the following required repertoire:

  • J.S. Bach: The “Little” Fugue in g minor, BWV 578.
  • A romantic style work (composed 1850-1950). This may be a single movement, or it may be an excerpt from a multi-movement work.
  • A selection of the performer’s choice, not longer than 10 minutes. Finalists chosen by the judging panel will be invited to the final round of the competition in Phoenix.

Rodgers Instruments Corporation is a premier builder of classical digital and pipe combination organs with church, home and performance installations that span the globe. Rodgers is a member of the Roland Group, headed by Roland Corporation, a world leader in electronic musical instrument technologies and electronic musical instrument sales and manufacturing. More information is available at www.rodgersinstruments.com.