Organists

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SharonRose Pfeiffer

SharonRose Pfeiffer has concertized extensively throughout the United States and Europe, including organ solos, recitals, and radio broadcasts in New York City, at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ, Wheaton College in Illinois, and throughout France. The winner of a Fulbright scholarship, Dr. Pfeiffer spent a year in Toulouse, coaching with the late composer and organist Xavier Darasse, and researching organ restorations in southern France. During that year, she won first prize in the prestigious Concours Internationale des Arts Renaissances. On a concert tour of southern France, one reviewer described her playing as “exuberant . . . profoundly sensitive”: La Dépêche.

A native of Ridgefield, New Jersey, Dr. Pfeiffer began her career as a church musician at the age of 13.  She served as organist/choirmaster for several major churches, implementing and developing extensive choir programs.  Currently, she is an Artist-in-Residence for Arts Empowering Life Foundation, and Director of the Children’s Choirs program for the Church of the Transfiguration.

Dr. Pfeiffer received her Bachelor of Music degree from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey, summa cum laude. She earned her Master’s Degree and Doctorate in organ performance at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, where she was teaching assistant to David Craighead in organ and to Arthur Haas in harpsichord. During her time in Rochester, she was also Instructor of Organ and Harpsichord at Nazareth College, and Music Consultant for the Episcopal Diocese of Rochester.

Dr. Pfeiffer is featured on the organ recording Olivier Messiaen: The Mystical Colors of Christ and on her first solo recording, Illuminations, featuring the surround-sound E.M. Skinner organ at the Church of the Transfiguration.

James Jordan, Jr.

James Jordan has performed as an organ accompanist and soloist throughout the United States and Eastern and Western Europe. Cited as performing both “authoritatively and sensitively” by the Boston Globe, and as a “superb performer” by American Record Guide, Dr. Jordan earned his Bachelor of Music Degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, studying with Robert Anderson. As a student of David Craighead, he received his Master’s Degree, Doctorate, and Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. He has published in the American Choral Review and was a contributing author to American Sacred Choral Music—An Overview and Handbook (Paraclete Press, 2001).

Dr. Jordan has done extensive work in Gregorian Chant as a member of the Gloriæ Dei Cantores Schola, studying under Dr. Mary Berry. He has also been featured on numerous Gloriæ Dei Cantores recordings as well as solo organ recordings, including Olivier Messiaen: The Mystical Colors of Christ with David Chalmers and SharonRose Pfeiffer.

David Chalmers, Organist

A performer of wide-ranging interests and experience, David Chalmers has given numerous organ concerts in the United States and abroad, including engagements in New York, Pittsburgh, Nashville, West Point, many American Guild of Organist Chapters throughout the country, the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC, Princeton University, and most recently at Trinity Church in Boston, MA, and Washington National Cathedral. His foreign appearances have included such notable venues as St. Sulpice in Paris, Conservatory Hall and Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow, and St. John’s College Chapel, Cambridge, at the invitation of the late George Guest.

A native of Newark, Delaware, Dr. Chalmers began organ studies with Lee Dettra, and received his Bachelor of Music degree from Westminster Choir College where he studied with George Markey. He received the master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Eastman School of Music where he studied with David Craighead. The winner of a Fulbright fellowship, Dr. Chalmers spent two years studying in Paris with Daniel Roth, specializing in French organ music of the 19th century.

Dr. Chalmers has been featured on the Gloriæ Dei Cantores recordings Leo Sowerby: American Master of Sacred Song and Peace Be With You (J.S. Bach). He also collaborated with James Jordan and SharonRose Pfeiffer on the recording Olivier Messiaen: The Mystical Colors of Christ. He is a contributing author to American Sacred Music – An Overview and Handbook (Paraclete Press, 2001).

 


The Organ of the Church of the Transfiguration

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RECORDINGS

Illuminations Organ Recording

Through the E.M. Skinner Organ at the Church of the Transfiguration in Orleans, Massachusetts, Dr. SharonRose Pfeiffer gives voice to works by master composers from the Baroque to the twentieth century. Recorded on Super Audio CD this disc creates a surround-sound experience, enabling listeners to hear the full effect of this organ. In a unique design by Nelson Barden & Associates of Boston, the organ pipes line the north and south side aisles the full length of the church, allowing the entire building to sing.

The program includes Resurrection: Lament, The Rising, The Ecstasy, Reflection by Larry King, Sonate der 94ste Psalm by Julius Reubke, Job for Organ, 6. Penitence and Realization by Petr Eben, Symphonie VI Op. 42: 1. Allegro by Charles-Marie Widor, Fantasia Super “Komm Heiliger Geist” BWV 651 by J.S. Bach, and Messe de la Pentecote: V. Sortie (Le vent d’Esprit) by Olivier Messiaen. The inspiration for all of these text-based works is outlined in the detailed program notes, giving additional insight to the composers’ thoughts and intentions behind the music.

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Explore the musical sound-world of French composer Olivier Messiaen in this collection of his organ works based on events from the life of Christ. The program booklet includes beautiful original artwork created especially for the recording, and insightful notes on the featured works. Recorded by the organists of Arts Empowering Life Foundation, on the E.M. Skinner organ of the Church of the Transfiguration.

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Burnished Bright Sacred Sounds of Brass Organ and BellsThe heraldic voices of brass, bells and organ announce the majesty of Christ — his human birth as an infant in the stable at Bethlehem, his glorification on the mount of Transfiguration, the descent of his Holy Spirit in tongues of fire. Burnished Bright is a sophisticated and dynamic blend of these sacred instruments. Opening and closing the recording are two fanfares written for the Church of the Transfiguration and based on Gregorian chants. Made in the splendid acoustics of the stone Church of the Transfiguration in Orleans, Massachusetts, the recording features the large E.M. Skinner organ with is grand and colorful sound.

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