The Richmond Chapter of the AGO will award up to three scholarships to qualified adults and young persons who will be entering grade 8 or above in the Fall.
There is a critical shortage of trained organists in this country and in our locality. Smaller churches struggle to find organists to play services, and even larger churches struggle to find qualified substitutes. We wish to encourage the training of talented pianists and aspiring young organists to serve churches of any denomination or size.
A part-time church organist position can provide valuable experience and supplemental income for competent players. A solid keyboard technique is important to success. If students are currently taking piano lessons, we encourage their continuance, as these lessons provide a foundation to build organ technique upon.
The student must:
- Have a strong commitment to serving in the music ministry
- Demonstrate a high degree of musicianship
- If auditioning on piano, here are the requirements:
- two prepared classical pieces of contrasting period and style (one pre-19th century, one 19th century or later) lasting about five minutes each and at least grade 4 in difficulty (e.g., Clementi Sonatinas, faster movements);
- major scales of up to 4 sharps and 4 flats hands together in parallel motion, two octaves ascending and descending;
- sight reading a hymn and a short composition in two-part counterpoint.
- simple aural and music notation tests
- Obtain piano teacher’s approval (for young persons currently studying piano)
- If auditioning on organ, here are the requirements:
- two prepared pieces of contrasting period and style (one pre-19th century, one 19th century or later) lasting about 3-5 minutes each. Pedals are optional. (e.g., a Bach Little Prelude & Fugue, a Vierne free style piece.)
- major scales of up to 4 sharps and 4 flats hands together in parallel motion, two octaves ascending and descending (no pedals)
- sight reading a hymn and a short composition in two-part counterpoint. (no pedals)
- simple aural and music notation tests
- Obtain organ teacher’s approval (for young persons currently studying organ)
For those awarded a scholarship, the Richmond AGO chapter will:
- Arrange organ lessons with a local Guild member who is a recognized organ teacher
- Pay one-half ($25 each lesson/$375 each semester) of the fee for fifteen 45-minute lessons each semester, September – December and January – May. In order to retain eligibility for continuation in the second semester, the student must attain a grade of C or better in the first semester.
- Arrange for practice time on an appropriate organ
- Provide a free one-year subscribing membership in the AGO which includes subscriptions to the chapter newsletter and to the national monthly magazine plus the privilege of attending monthly chapter programs
- Introduce the scholarship recipient at a Guild chapter meeting early in the Fall
- Arrange a performance opportunity in an AGO Richmond Chapter program in May, 2024
- Evaluate the recipient for scholarship renewal when exceptional achievement is demonstrated
Scholarship recipients (and parents when applicable) must sign and abide by an agreement to:
- Practice faithfully and attend lessons regularly
- Promptly purchase organ playing shoes and music
- Pay the balance of the lesson fees:
- Lessons are priced at $50 each.
- There are 15 lessons per semester.
- The student is responsible for 50% of the fees per semester.
- This amounts to $25 per lesson or $375 per semester.
- For the entire year, the student’s responsibility is $750.
- Play in a public recital at the May, 2024 meeting of the Richmond AGO Chapter
If you have other questions about this program, contact Scott Hayes at firstname.lastname@example.org
How do I apply?
Applications must be received by Monday, July 31, 2023.
Auditions will be held on Tuesday, August 8, beginning at 7:00pm, at All Saints Church, 8787 River Road, Richmond, VA 23229.