I am pleased to share that I have two wonderful organist/pianists coming to Old First to share their wonderful gifts with us this summer, first of which is THIS coming Sunday, July 24th at the 7 p.m. Interfaith Prayer Service!
A new friend and colleague, introduced to me by our own Jonathan O., will be visiting from Atlanta this week and has offered to be our organist for this Sunday’s wonderful prayer service.
Nicholas Dragone is the Director of Music and Liturgy at St. Philip Benizi Catholic Church in Jonesboro, Georgia. Nicholas is not only a professional organist, but also a tenor and pianist. When he is not creating beautiful music at St. Philip Benizi’s, he is the acting Chair of Pianist’s Division of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians and on the Board of the organization.
Nicholas will be playing two of his own improvisations on different hymn-tunes for the Prelude and Postlude, as well as accompanying on one of our hymns and some of the sung responses. Please don’t miss this very special service, which will also be featuring a wonderful 23-voice choir comprised of our own Old First Choir members and Healing Presence Singers.
On August 14th, when I am away in Maine for a writer’s conference (The TLAN Power of Words conference – Transformative Language Arts Network), my dear friend and amazing colleague, Laurie Rogers, will be at both the piano and organ.
Laurie is one of the finest local pianists, and also one of the most well-respected vocal coach accompanists in the area, as well as nationally. She has worked for some of the U.S.’s most prestigious Opera Houses and Festivals, including Dallas Opera, San Francisco Opera, Opera Co. of Philadelphia (now Opera Philadelphia), Wolf Trapp, Los Angeles Opera and Houston Grand, just to name a few! When she is not running around the globe, she has an active coaching studio in her home in Bryn Mawr, as well as playing organ and piano in area churches. Having just finished up her 6th successful season as the Director of The Young Artists Program and Head of Artistic Staff at Opera Saratoga, Laurie will be returning to her home in Bryn Mawr for the end of the summer, so I am delighted she is available to share her gifts with us on the 14th of August!