Vol .  62,  No . 3
November 2011

In This Issue
From the Dean
Next Chapter Event
Members from the Past
Can you Identify this Member from the Past?
Saint Thomas Choir School
  Keith S. Tóth - Dean, NYC Chapter, American Guild of Organists
  Keith S. Tóth, Dean

From the Dean

Dear Colleagues,

October saw two wonderful events in the life of this chapter. On Monday, October 24 the chapter sponsored a splendid members’ recital at First Presbyterian Church to celebrate the anniversaries of Guilmant and Liszt. The chapter extends its thanks and gratitude to our performers: Joseph Arndt, David Crean, George Davey, William Entriken, James Kennerley, Daniel Kirk-Foster, Marie Mercier, Gregg Patruno, and Craig Scott Symons. We also thank First Presbyterian Church and Dr. William Entriken for hosting us for this recital.

The second major event in the life of this chapter was the membership’s ratification of the chapter’s Operating Procedures. I am very thankful for the many members who took the time to review the online document and to register their vote online. The final count was 90 votes for and 4 votes against ratifying the procedures. These operating procedures will next be sent to AGO regional and national officials for their approval. Clear and thorough operating procedures are vital to the organizational health of a chapter. I am delighted that we now have these ratified by the membership!

Our Annual Directory will be published in February 2012. We are now soliciting advertisement for the directory. Since we have a large readership, this beautifully produced volume is a wonderful vehicle for advertising your programs. I encourage all to visit our chapter website, www.nycago.org, where you can find information about advertising. Our rates are very reasonable and one of the most effective ways of advertising organ and sacred music events. Please note that the deadline for submission of ads for the Annual Directory is November 30. If you have any questions, please contact the Directory advertising director, Bernadette Hoke.

November is a busy month of preparations for those of us involved in church music. On behalf of the chapter, I extend best wishes to all during this busy period and for an appropriately enjoyable and restful Thanksgiving holiday.

Respectfully yours,

Keith S. Tóth

Next Chapter Event

19 & 20 February 2012
Presidents’ Day Conference: “Les Autres”
Special Topics in French 19th and 20th Century Music

Church of the Ascension (Episcopal), Fifth Avenue at 10th Street
Brick Presbyterian Church, Park Avenue at 91st Street
Church of St. Mary the Virgin, 145 West 46th Street (Broadway & Sixth Avenue)

Partners: Church of the Ascension
Palazzetto Bru-Zane – Centre de Musique Romantique Française

Vierne & Widor Chamber Music and Music of Batiste & Dubois – Recital
Bernadette Hoke, piano; Daniel Kirk-Foster, piano; Diego Innocenzi, organ
Brick Presbyterian Church

Organ Recital – Stephen Tharp, Church of St. Mary the Virgin

19th C. French Church Music & Interpretation
Diego Innocenzi, Rémy Campos

Marie-Madeleine Duruflé-Chevalier – Remembrances
Dr. Dennis Keene, Dr. Matthew Lewis

Early Organ Works of Tournemire – Lecture–Recital
Dr. Andrew Henderson

Jehan Alain: Life and Works – Lecture–Recital
Renée Anne Louprette

Clarion Music Society; Steven Fox, director
with Diego Innocenzi, organ & chamber ensemble

Requiem des Rois de France
David McK. Williams
David McK. Williams (1887-1978)

Members from the Past

Donald McDonald, Richard Alexander, and John Bishop each correctly identified David McKinley Williams (1887-1978) in last month's issue. The photo of him in his Canadian army uniform appeared in the January 1920 issue of The American Organist.

Born in Wales he came to Denver at an early age and was trained as a chorister by Henry Housley at the Cathedral of St. John in the Wilderness. At age 13 he became organsit and choirmaster of St. Peter's Church in Denver.

In 1908 he came to New York as organist of Grace Church Chapel and studied with Clement Gale. He spent the years from 1911 to 1914 in Paris where he studied with Vierne, D'Indy, and Widor. Returning to New York, he was at the Church of the Holy Communion from 1914 to 1916, when he joined the Canadian Artillery and saw service overseas. In 1920 he returned to Church of the Holy Communion, leaving six months later to become organist and choirmaster of St. Bartholomew's Church upon the death of Artthur Hyde. There, for the next twenty-seven years, he developed an already outstanding program into one of tremendous popularity and superlative influence.

Inspired by the organ in the dome of St. Paul's Cathedral in London, it was his vision that led to the placing of the Celestial Organ in the new dome of St. Bartholomew's Church in 1930 and by all accounts he was very creative in his service playing and accompanying. He was precise and demanding of his choir and was vivid and dramatic in his music and in his speaking. Virgil Fox was a great admirer of David McK. Williams and quotes him at some length in his 1968 masterclasses, recordings of which are extant. In fact, much of Fox's own theatrics are the result of his infatuation with DMcKW, including his wearing of a cape!

After his retirement from St. Bartholomew's he traveled widely and maintained many friendships throughout the country with students, colleagues, and others, including James Michener, with whom he traveled to the South Pacific.

He died in 1978 and is buried in the crypt of St. Bartholomew's Church.

David Enlow, F.A.G.O.   Arthur Lawrence, D.M.A., A.A.G.O.   Yvonne Sonnenwald-Melin

Can You Identify this Member from the Past?

. . . now deceased?
The next chapter newsletter is the December 2011–January 2012 issue. The deadline for submissions is November 15, 2011. Material may be submitted to Neal Campbell, Editor. Nine issues are published through the year on a monthly basis with combined issues for December/January, May/June, and July/August. To make changes in your email address or to subscribe to the e-newsletter, please contact Christopher Jennings, Registrar.