February 2018
New and Improved Chapter Directory!

NSAGO Dean Andrea Handley
NSAGO Dean Andrea Handley

Andrea Handley

Finally, we have posted the long-awaited and hot-off-the-press updated chapter directory!  Find it from the home page of our website by clicking on the About Us tab.  Please note that we have streamlined this process now and will be updating the directory regularly by using the detailed information that you each provide through Oncard when you join or renew your membership. So please take a moment to take a look at your details in the updated chapter directory now – and if there is anything missing or incorrect (not only basic personal information, but where you work, professional credentials, titles, etc), please go to Oncard on the national site (agohq.org) and make those corrections there. That information will then be used in our next update of the chapter directory.

While we are well into 2018 now and the memory of Christmas is dim, I’ve just recently read an article that was in the Evanston Round Table in December, called “Christmas Sing at Raymond Park Led for Years by NU’s Dean Lutkin”. It is full of fascinating historical details of what sounds like a wonderful event that happened every December for 15 years, from 1915 to 1930. Churches in Evanston collaborated with NU and Dean Lutkin by gathering in Raymond Park (called ‘the park between the churches’ back then) to sing Christmas carols with the help of the NU a cappella choir and brass players playing from high in the bell tower at First Presbyterian Church. As we’re focusing on the history of our chapter this season, it’s fun to look even further back and see the rich heritage of church music that has existed on the north shore for over a century. Below is a scan of the article that someone sent to me below for your perusal. Enjoy!

Andrea Handley, Dean

February 2018
A Circuitous Journey

Phillip Kloeckner

My life as a musician, organist, conductor, and harpsichordist has been much more enjoyable and rich than I could have ever imagined when I set my sights on this path in earnest, some thirty years ago.  Above all else, I value the opportunity to immerse myself in beautiful, interesting, and complex music of all genres on a daily basis, and to meet and work with wonderful, inspiring, and brilliantly creative people.  So, I feel particularly fortunate to have the opportunities I have been given to create a life centered in the musical arts.

Having started playing other people’s music and improvising my own at the piano at age six, it is a small wonder that my life is configured as it currently is.  Taking my first organist/choir director position at age thirteen, and making a detour through an undergraduate biology degree at Swarthmore College, followed by work in a plant physiology laboratory, a jaunt to the south Pacific to study bird migration, and biomedical research at the Wistar Institute at the University of Pennsylvania (all the while studying organ, piano, music theory, harpsichord, and conducting), I set myself firmly on the path of preparing myself as a professional musician by enrolling in the Oberlin Conservatory of Music.  With my second undergraduate degree in hand, I headed south to Houston, where I was among the first wave of organ students to earn masters and doctoral degrees in organ at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University.  One of my first jobs in Houston was playing a beautiful little Kilgen organ for three or four funerals a week at a large funeral home where this Yankee was quickly indoctrinated into the culture of Southern hymns and cultural songs, including “Cool, Cool Water” and “Oh, My Papa!”  I quickly learned the fundamental importance of singing as part of rituals in these contexts.  After a lifetime of learning to read and speak German and French, wouldn’t you know that my doctoral thesis required the acquisition of some Spanish, as I headed to Perú to study nineteenth-century organs in that country.

While pursuing my graduate degrees, I was tapped to teach undergraduate music theory, aural skills, secondary organ lessons, figured bass, continuo, church music, and hymn playing.  A theory/composition mentor invited me to co-author an aural skills textbook, Functional Hearing, with him.  After graduation, I was asked to join the full-time faculty at the Shepherd School as an assistant to my organ mentor there, Clyde Holloway, continuing to teach the many subjects I had been teaching as a graduate student.  During this time, the stunning new building for the Shepherd School, designed by Ricardo Bofil and Larry Kirkegaard, opened, and I found myself at the center of the creation, installation, and inauguration of the Fisk-Rosales organ at the school.  Throughout this period, I was enjoying my first performing tours of Europe and really appreciated the opportunity to get to know many of the historic organs of Germany and France, and how the music I had played for my entire life came alive like never before on these unique instruments.  In addition to church choirs, I began to conduct the United Nations Association International Choir in Houston and further expanded my awareness of global cultures and musical traditions.  I began to incorporate many of these strains into my improvisations at the organ.  Through my contact with the international community in Houston, I was able to introduce the organ to many people who had never heard the instrument before.

In 2012, the call to move on to yet new opportunities and challenges, and to move closer to my family in Vermont, came in the form of a position on the faculty of the University of Chicago, teaching musicianship in the Department of Music, and in 2013, the invitation to establish a formal organ teaching studio at Rockefeller Chapel.  In 2014, I released my first solo CD, Exotic Variations, recorded on the Rice organ shortly before I came to Chicago.  In 2015 and 2016, I served on the board of the Chicago AGO.  In late 2016, I became organist at First Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple where I am now fully engaged in the process of restoring the church’s 94-year-old organ, E. M. Skinner, Op. 414.  And last year, I inaugurated a new organ teaching studio at First Methodist, Chicago International Organ Academy, which offers students of all skill levels several options for studying organ remotely.  Highlights of my time in Chicago have been to join colleagues of the NSAGO in presenting a creative members’ recital last June at St. Giles in Northbrook, a turn at the charming Dobson organ at Elliott Chapel, and playing organ with the Evanston Symphony in, among other works, Mahler’s 2nd Symphony.

I have found a wonderful community of organists and fellow musicians in the greater Chicago area, which, after five years, I feel I am just beginning to know and appreciate fully.

Phillip Kloeckner

February 2018
Treasurer’s Corner


January was a quiet month, as we had no income.  We did have expenses of $427.

  • Our chapter will have an ad in the National Convention program book!  This ad is just one more way to celebrate our 60th anniversary!
  • Andrea Handley was reimbursed for a portion of her expenses for the Epiphany party that she hosted in her home.
  • I was reimbursed for expenses paid to “FatCow” for our website domain name.

Our ending balances are:

Checking         $2,036.45

Scholarship     $5,317.11

Savings            $24,020.46

All Balances    $31,374.02

Laurie Stivers headshot

Laurie Stivers

Laurie Stivers, treasurer

January 2018
When You’re Good You’re so Good, and When You’re Bad You’re so Bad!”

Eileen Baumgarten

I got my start playing the organ when I was in 7th grade in Powhattan, Kansas, and was a member of Zion Lutheran Church.  The elders decided that they needed some new blood at the organ bench and asked my friend and me if we would take organ lessons and be willing to play for church for $1.00 a Sunday.  We accepted and took lessons that summer.  The church was unheated except for Sunday mornings so taking lessons in the summer and piano in the winter months was the way it all started.  (There were those times getting ready for Christmas Eve I practiced with a winter coat on until fingers were frozen.)  The biggest revelation sitting on the bench was seeing the minister go back into his study during the hymn right before the sermon when I assumed he was praying over his sermon and seeing from the organ bench that he was actually going out the side door and having a cigarette!  After high school I attended St. John’s Lutheran College in Winfield, Kansas, where I planned to study parish work with an emphasis in organ.  My organ teacher there persuaded me to audition at the University of Oklahoma with Mildred Andrews.  I was a very naive country girl had no idea what I was doing, but went with him for the audition and was accepted as a student.  I entered OU after finishing my second year at St. John’s in the fall of 1969.  It was an eye opener as well as awe inspiring when I walked into the music school’s opening program to hear Charles Benbow play Messiaen’s “Dieu parmi nous.”  I knew I was among some great talent and wondered what I was doing there.  Everyone loves to hear stories about Miss Andrew’s style of teaching.  All girls were required to wear skirts to all lessons.  Once I showed up in culottes which I considered a skirt, but Miss Andrews thought was too much like pants.  We went out into the hall to try to find another one “of her little chickens” to trade with so I could go home and change my clothes and come back with a skirt on so I could take my lesson.  We had two 30 minute lessons a week which she believed was more efficient than a once a week one hour lesson.  No time was ever wasted.  When your lesson was finishing, the next student would be at the edge of the stage, and she would wave you forward.  Then as one student was leaving the bench on the left, the other student was sliding on on the right, and the next lesson began no minute wasted. There was great respect, love and fear of our “Dear Teacher”.  I was never a prodigy or one of her outstanding students to go on and earn a Fulbright or major competition.  I was just glad to learn many good techniques and be able to complete my degree without being one of the students who would be asked to come in a room and told it was time to select a new major.  Lessons learned that I still use are practicing the alto line alone of a fugue, playing a difficult line backwards, if your feet make a mistake, it’s probably because your hands don’t know what they are doing, and one of the most valuable is the use of the Brahms Fifty-One Exercises For the Piano—specifically Nos. 24a, 24b, 27, 30, 33, 34, 39, 40a, 40b, 41a, 41b, 42a, and 42b.  The organ department at OU struggled some after her death, but is now flourishing with the American Organ Institute run by Dr. John Schwandt.

The title “When You’re Good You’re so Good, and When You’re Bad You’re so Bad” was taken from a quote Miss Andrews spoke to me at one of my lessons.  I just try to make “good moments” coming and keep the “bad moments” at bay.

Eileen Baumgarten

January 2018
Dean’s Column

NSAGO Dean Andrea Handley

A very happy new year to you all!  If you’re a typical organist, you’re heaving a bit of a sigh of relief at this point, having a mountain of extra rehearsals and services for another Advent/Christmas season behind you. Welcome, “Ordinary Time”, in more ways than one!

Many of us had much fun this past Friday evening at the fourth annual Epiphany party (scroll down to see Sharon Peterson’s review of the event). Part of the evening was a trivia game, created by Bob Woodworth, with 40 questions about the history of our chapter – part of our commitment to have every program this season reflect some aspect of our history together. I’ve listed the questions below, and then the answers separately below the questions, so that you can take the quiz for yourselves. Although we didn’t keep score, I think we’d all agree that Morgan Simmons got the only A+ for the evening with his many correct responses!

NSAGO Dean Andrea Handley

Andrea Handley

Andrea Handley, Dean





North Shore AGO History Questions
Epiphany Party – January 5, 2018 

  1. The North Shore AGO Chapter organizational meeting was chaired by ________. 
  1. _________was elected Dean of the Chapter at the first meeting. 
  1. St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Evanston was served for a long time with a Hammond B-3, or a Hammond Grand 100 or an Austin Organ. 
  1. _________served St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Evanston for over 30 years. 
  1. _________served two non-consecutive terms as Dean of the Chapter. 
  1. What husband and wife both served terms as Dean of the Chapter? 
  1. _________played the dedication recital at the First United Methodist Church in Glenview on the ____________Organ. 
  1. What other husband/wife teams were also organists? 
  1. What four famous organists played recitals in the first year of the Chapter? 

    10._________was the Chapter’s first Regional Convention of the AGO. 

    11._________was the long-time Editor of The Diapason Magazine. 

    12._________initiates the Chapter newsletter Overtones. 

  1. In 1972 Han Wurman demonstrates the _________for the Chapter. 
  1. What four international organ artists played for the Chapter more than once? 
  1. Emmanuel Methodist Church in Evanston is home to the 1892 ___________. 
  1. _________was a long-time organ professor at Northwestern University and also Organist at Trinity Episcopal Church in Highland Park. 
  1. Speaking of Trinity Episcopal Church, the Aeolian-Skinner Organ installed there had a __________console. 
  1. What famous organist from St. Eustache in Paris played a recital for the Chapter in 1975?
  1. What newly appointed organist at Notre-Dame in Paris played a recital for the Chapter in 2016? 
  1. Who was organist at Fourth Presbyterian Church in Chicago, then at First Presbyterian Church in Evanston and finally at First Presbyterian Church in Lake Forest? 
  1. What English college choir performed for the Chapter? 
  1. the Chapter helped to sponsor the Romantic Organ Symposium in __________. 
  1. What Dean of the Chapter was the long-time musician at Northfield Community Church? 
  1. What concert organists from England presented recitals for the Chapter? 
  1. _________was long-time organist at First Baptist Church of Evanston – now the Lake Street Church – following William Barnes. 
  1. How many Deans of the Chapter are still alive? 
  1. Karel Paukert presented at least _________programs for the Chapter. 
  1. Many of the North Shore Chapter AGO programs were held at Alice Millar Chapel at Northwestern University. Who was Alice Millar? 
  1. Vail Chapel houses a Casavant Organ that was formerly at _________ that was formerly at _________. 
  1. Karel Paukert was originally from _________. 
  1. _________ and __________are the only Dutch organists to have presented programs for the Chapter. 
  1. _________is the only Belgian organist to have presented a recital for the Chapter. 
  1. _________is the only Italian organist to have presented a recital for the Chapter. 
  1. The 1938 _________Organ is located at the former First Church of Christ, Scientist in Winnetka – now called Grace Church. 
  1. Glenview Community Church installed a _________Organ in 1999. 
  1. The First Presbyterian Church of Evanston 1958 Aeolian-Skinner Organ contains pipes/ranks from previous organs _________ and _________. 
  1. The Winnetka Congregational Church is home to the 2008 __________Organ. 
  1. The Music Institute of Chicago (formerly the First Church of Christ, Scientist) in Evanston is home to the 1914 _________Organ. 
  1. The Chapter hosts its second AGO Regional Convention in __________. 
  1. ________, a member of the North Shore AGO Chapter was National President of the AGO in 1994. 

Epiphany Party – January 5, 2018 Answers 

  1. Margaret Budd
  2. Thomas Matthews
  3. Hammond Grand 100
  4. Porter Heaps
  5. Morgan Simmons
  6. Morgan Simmons and Mary Simmons
  7. Grigg Fountain – Holtkamp Organ
  8. Enright’s – Fountain’s
  9. Fred Swann – Virgil Fox – E. Power Biggs – Austin Lovelace
  10. 1961
  11. Frank Cunkle
  12. Leora DeFord
  13. Mood synthesizer
  14. Flor Peeters – Marie-Madeleine Durufle – Marie-Claire Alain – Gillian Weir
  15. Roosevelt Organ
  16. George McClay
  17. Schlicker
  18. Andre Marchal
  19. Vincent Dubois
  20. Richard Enright
  21. St. John’s College, Cambridge
  22. 1988
  23. George Williams
  24. Simon Preston, Gillian Weir, John Scott
  25. Jack Goode
  26. 22
  27. Three
  28. Mr. and Mrs. Foster G. McGaw gave money for the construction of Alice Millar Chapel in honor of his mother Alice S. Millar McGaw.
  29. Seabury-Western Seminary Chapel – Lutheran Church in Rockford
  30. Czechoslovakia
  31. Piet Kee and Gustave Leonhardt
  32. Flor Peeters
  33. Mario Duella
  34. W. W. Kimball
  35. Buzard
  36. Johnson & Son – Votteler-Holtkamp-Sparling
  37. Pasi
  38. E. M. Skinner
  39. 1973
  40. Margaret McElwain Kemper

January 2018
Fourth Annual Epiphany Party

On Friday evening, January 5, Dean Andrea Handley hosted the festive Annual Epiphany Party at her home, once again. It was a delightful evening of fellowship, absolutely delicious food, fun, and music. Andrea & Sharon (Peterson), as usual, played a 4-hand version of LeRoy Anderson’s Sleigh Ride; Bob Woodworth led the members in a game of answering questions about the NSAGO’s history, (it was great fun!); and then we enjoyed a sing-a-long of Epiphany Carols from the Oxford Book of Carols.  New friends were made and old friendships renewed.

The evening was so much fun that we all forgot to take pictures….:-) But nevertheless, it was a wonderful beginning to 2018. Thanks to all who planned, cooked, and attended. We have a great chapter!

Sharon Peterson, Sub-dean

January 2018
Treasurer’s Corner

Happy New Years to you and yours!

We welcome members Howard Eckdahl and Jerry Hall.  We also thank Jerry for his contribution to both the Scholarship and Chapter contributions.

During December our only expense was a $335 payment to our webmaster for his 6 months of support for our website.  All expenses for the Fishell concert have been paid.  So our balances are:

Checking account balance less outstanding checks     $2,463.44

Scholarship (saving account)         $5,316.97

General saving account              $24,019.81

Total         $31,800.22

Laurie Stivers, Treasurer

December 2017
The 60th Anniversary Fun Continues

NSAGO Dean Andrea Handley
NSAGO Dean Andrea Handley

Andrea Handley

We have now had two incredible programs in our 60th anniversary season. Scroll down – after reading this, of course – to see a review of Janette Fishell’s thoughtfully planned and beautifully executed recital at Millar Chapel on November 10, and then read about the very enjoyable and informative masterclass the following morning.

As we all face collectively hundreds of rehearsals, services and concerts in the coming weeks, I ask you all to consider adding one quick thing to your to-do list.  Invite a non-AGO organist friend or a non-active AGO friend to come with you to the Epiphany party on Friday, January 5.  It’s a great time for organists to celebrate – all our hard December work is done and we can relax and share stories.  This year, in keeping with our anniversary theme, we will feature a trivia game involving the history of our chapter. So most especially if you are a long-time member, WE NEED YOU to come play this game! We will gather at 6pm for drinks and appetizers, followed by dinner at 6:30pm.  Look for an Evite in the next few weeks, and just add the number of your guest/s to your RSVP.  We look forward to seeing many of you.

On another topic, we are in the midst of updating our chapter directory, and need your help. In the past we have asked you all to send your more detailed information to us via an email directly to us. But we’ve decided that it’s more efficient to ask you all to make sure your personal/employment information is added/updated in ONCARD. We will then take the info you have in ONCARD and import it into our chapter directory.

Stay warm, play well, and hope to see many of you on January 5.

Andrea Handley, Dean

December 2017
Fishell Concert a Perfect Tribute to Richard Enright

On Friday evening, November 10, the North Shore Chapter continued celebrating its 60th anniversary season with a recital honoring the life of one of its founding members, Richard Gordon Enright (1923-2016), who was also Professor Emeritus of Church Music and Organ, at Northwestern University.   The venue was Northwestern’s Alice Millar Chapel, home of Aeolian-Skinner Opus 1413 (4 manuals, 74 stops, 100 ranks), where Enright taught for 35 years. The organ was installed in 1964 when Enright had already been serving on Northwestern’s Organ Faculty for 15 years; he later served as chair of the department from 1969 to 1989.

Longtime North Shore member Morgan Simmons opened the evening’s program with anecdotes from his 54 years of friendship with the Enright family, comparing Dr. Enright to Old Faithful, El Capitan, and the Rock of Gibralter! Simmons also introduced Enright family members who were in attendance, and then the evening’s recitalist, Janette Fishell.

One of Enright’s most distinguished students, Janette Fishell completed doctoral studies at Northwestern in the 1980’s as a student of both Enright and Wolfgang Rübsam. Following graduation, she headed the Organ Performance and Sacred Music degree programs at East Carolina University from 1989 to 2008, and then became Professor of Music and Chair of the Organ Department at Indiana University. Her former students have won numerous competitions and serve in churches and on university faculties throughout the US and Asia. In addition to teaching, Dr. Fishell has, for over three decades, traveled the world, giving critically acclaimed recitals on significant organs in the US, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

Members of the Enright family with recitalist Janette Fishell

To honor her former professor, Fishell chose unique repertoire, juxtaposing (1) music tied to World Wars I and II, reflecting Richard Enright’s life as a veteran and part of the “greatest generation” and (2) works associated by Fishell with her studies at Northwestern under Dr. Enright.

Dr. Fishell titled her program “Requiescat in Pace” and opened with Leo Sowerby’s work of the same name, which was composed in 1920 to honor soldiers killed in World War I. It began quietly, using colorful solo flutes and reeds (and also – in place of organ chimes, which do not exist on Millar’s organ – mysterious bell-like sounds that we later learned were played by North Shore Dean Andrea Handley on handbells!). A masterfully registered crescendo and then descrescendo outlined the arc of this work.

Three Bach works followed, including a trio setting of Allein Gott in der Höh sei Ehr (BWV 664) that Fishell played for her audition at Northwestern and the Prelude and Fugue in E Minor (BWV 548) which Fishell played for one of her doctoral recitals. Fishell’s delightfully dance-like and playful interpretation of the trio setting was followed by another much more contemplative setting of the same chorale (BWV 662), played with charmingly limpid ornamentation and Baroque-appropriate rhythmic flexibility. The E-minor Prelude and its “Wedge” Fugue showed off Fishell’s virtuosity and masterful technique.

Following intermission, Fishell presented two works associated with French composer Jehan Alain, who died at the age of 29, fighting heroically in World War II. As stated in the recital program, these works were presented “as tribute to the bravery of the young Enright, who served in Patton’s Third Army of the 26th Infantry Division in the European theatre from 1943 to 1946.” Alain’s Postlude pour l’Office de Complies is a quiet work and, in this recital, began the second part of the program quietly like the first part, with serenely stretched phrasing of the Gregorian chant melody. Maurice Duruflé’s Prelude et Fugue sur le nom d’ALAIN followed, providing another opportunity to witness Fishell’s masterful registration and dazzling virtuosity.

The rest of the recital featured music by Czech composer Petr Eben, the subject of Fishell’s doctoral dissertation (she is considered a leading authority on Eben’s organ music). Fishell chose Eben’s Song of Ruth (based on the biblical story of Ruth) to honor Enright and his wife Sandy who were married for 67 years (Mrs. Enright was also a musician, a talented soprano and organist). Beautifully sung by Hannah Dixon McConnell, this composition featured piquant harmonies and frequent duets between organ solo stops and the voice.

Appreciate audience gives standing ovation for Fishell’s performance

The final Eben featured the third and fourth movements from Nedělní Hudba (“Sunday Music”). Depicting the story of Christ’s encounter with a possessed man (see the fifth chapter of Mark in the Bible), the third movement Moto Ostinato is one of Eben’s most frequently performed pieces. It features devilishly (!) dissonant repetition and varying registration – Fishell commented that she liked the way this work demonstrates the variety of sound available on Millar’s organ. The fourth movement Finale, depicting the battle between Good and Evil, reflected the composer’s firsthand experience as a prisoner in Hitler’s Buchenwald. Fishell’s performance communicated brilliantly what she wrote in the program notes: “The trumpet summons all to battle; a sacred Kyrie struggles against twisting chromatic ‘cat calls.’ Ultimately, the Salve Regina resplendently proclaimed on full organ, leaves no doubt for the listener that the Good has triumphed.” It was a perfect way to show off yet again Fishell’s dexterity (e.g. trill upon trill on both pedals and manuals) and assured mastery of the resources available on the Millar organ, including its Festival Trumpet.

Evan Duvall, Margaret Kemper, Janette Fishell, Andrea Handley, Hannah Dixon McConnell

For an encore, Fishell related that she asked Morgan Simmons if Dr. Enright had a “party piece” – and Simmons said it was Jacques-Nicolas Lemmens’ Fanfare … Fishell’s interpretation was the perfect segue to a festive reception that was (as Morgan Simmons described it) a “feast for the eyes and palate.” Thank you to North Shore board members, Judy Kohl, who created the “feast” with an abundance of bundt cakes (many flavors!), drinks and other goodies. Gratitude must also be expressed to board member Evan DuVall who organized so much behind the scenes for this event and prepared the beautifully informative printed program.

Janette Fishell was a classmate of mine at Northwestern, and I’ve long admired the talent and depth of understanding she brings to organ performance – her splendid technique and unerring ear for registration always serve the music she presents. I can’t think of anyone else from my student years who could have created a recital so uniquely fit and so well performed in honor of Dr. Enright and his years at Northwestern University as well as his place in the history of the North Shore Chapter.

Fishell with Will Schlueter

Following the recital Friday night, Prof. Fishell returned to Millar Chapel on Saturday to teach a performance masterclass for 5 area students. Participants included: Adam Chlebek, student of Richard Hoskins, playing Dupré’s Cortège et Litanie, Op. 19, No. 2; Nick Curry, student of James Brown at the Music Institute of Chicago, playing Bach’s Prelude and Fugue in c, BWV 549; Daehee Kim, student of Beth Naegele at Moody Bible Institute, playing Bach’s Toccata in d, BWV 565; Will Schlueter, student of Edward Zimmerman at Wheaton College, playing Dupré’s Variations sur un Noël, Op. 20; and Bill Wilson, student of James Brown at the Music Institute of Chicago, playing Vierne’s ‘Prelude,’ from Twenty-four Pieces in Free Style, Op. 31. Some 30 chapter members, students’ family members, and teachers crowded into the chapel’s choir loft for the 2.5-hour masterclass. Professor Fishell masterfully balanced musical insight, technical expertise, and rigor with approachability and wry humor. Her teaching effortlessly matched the caliber of Friday’s performance and was every bit as much a pedagogical model for the teachers in the room as it was instructional for the students.

Beth Naegele

Elizabeth Naegele, board member