The Dayton Chapter is a diverse group of people who love the pipe organ and its music. We are teachers, students, part-time composers, singers, office workers, music directors, professors, engineers, full-time and part-time organists, keyboard and electronic organ aficionados.

We hold programs throughout the year ranging from workshops and concerts to youth programs and fun events like Slilent Movie Nights.  Most of our events are free and open to the public. Please come join us this coming year!.

Dean's Note - Jerry Taylor

Jerry Taylor

As I transition my position as Sub-Dean and begin as Dean, I want to start by a huge “Thank you” to Matt Dierking for his past four years as Sub-Dean and then Dean. He worked hard to grow our chapter and to put into place guidelines and job descriptions for the chapter’s board. A huge “Thank you” also goes to our board that skillfully assisted in the wonderful direction Matt was taking our chapter.

Then I’d like to make some observations on our strengths and weaknesses. Our biggest and most unique success is the Organ Academy started many years ago by Wilma Meckstroth, who passed the leadership on to Rachel Lammi, who has served faithfully the last few years and is passing the baton on to Dr. David Crean. The Academy has produced a number of organists in the past many of them faithfully serving their churches as organists and some in the university preparing for a career as an organist. The training of new organists is the only way the organ will stay alive in the future. Our February recitalist this year, Matt Phelps, is one of these students. A huge thank you also goes to those who are willing to teach these students. The only remuneration our teachers get is their guild dues paid, which virtually means they are teaching for about $2.50 a lesson. After you figure what it cost them to drive to the lesson, we owe a big debt of gratitude to our chapter’s teaching staff! I taught in the Academy for over 25 years and it is not always a lot of fun, but it is rewarding to know that by teaching someone new to play the organ, I am part of the future of the organ. I’m so glad this program continues.

The second strength that I see in our chapter is the officers who have experience and willingness to keep on serving. Decker Jones has been our chapter’s treasurer forever and we can be so grateful to him for keeping track of our money, dues and all that goes with having good financial records. I am so thankful he continues in this roll. Priscilla Acuff, is the chapter secretary and handles so much of the paperwork including auditions and every other year Priscilla presents a Pipes and Pizza presentation. Ellen Bagley already has been a huge source of knowledge, information and encouragement. She handles membership questions and so many details that keep us running smoothly. We are all eternally grateful to Ellen for all that she does for our guild. Effie Sue Kemerley will assume the job of placement coordinator from Terry Donat who now assumes the job of the Sub-dean. Matt Dierking has agreed to be our Trumpetings editor and has taken on the job of producing the document you are currently reading.

After attending the regional convention in Youngstown this past July, I have gotten excited about encouraging each of you to look at the Service Playing Exam. We have a lot of very fine talent in the Dayton Chapter, and I would like to see how many of us could pass the Service Playing Exam in the next two years. The exam is like playing a church service well, and I think it would be fun to show the National Chapter how many quality organists there are in Dayton. Your first assignment is to learn a piece (yes, any piece) from Bach’s Orgelbüchlein (Liturgical Year.) Need music? We have a music library that can supply music for you.

I hope to see you at our first meeting for this season on Sunday, September 17, at 5:00pm. The meeting will be at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church on Wayne Avenue. This is a unique opportunity to see a very historic church from the beginnings of Dayton that is sadly going to close its doors in December.

- Jerry



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The Mission of the AGO is:

To advance the cause of organ and choral music, to increase organ and choral music contributions to aesthetic and religious experiences, and to promote the understanding, appreciation and enjoyment of organ and choral music.

To improve the proficiency of organist and choral conductors. To evaluate, by examination, attainments in organ playing, choral techniques, conducting, and the theory and general knowledge of music, and to grant certificates to those who pass such examinations at specified levels of attainment.

To provide members with opportunities to meet for discussion of professional topics, and to pursue such other activities that contribute to the fulfillment of the purposes of the guild.

Soli Deo Gloria
Soli Deo Gloria

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Happy New Year Everyone!


I hope everyone had a great Christmas music season. From the Messiah at Wittenberg to the Carillon Brass at the Loft to Noonday Carols at Westminster, Lynn and I enjoyed some really great Christmas music.


Now it’s time to start thinking about the year to come. So what’s your resolution?  Perhaps there’s that one piece you’ve always wanted to learn, an area organ you always wanted to play or maybe you just want to stay on top of the year’s music schedule.  No matter what your resolutions are, hopefully there’s room for one more: To Get Engaged with the Chapter.  We’ve had some great programs so far, and there’s much more to come. I hope you’ll plan to attend the programs, or even better, volunteer to help with your favorite one, or suggest a new one for next year. Working the programs with other members can be very enjoyable, and it is definitely a great help to the chapter.


Priscilla Acuff and Jerry Taylor are working on the next program now. “Meet the Church Organ for Pianist and Organ Enthusiasts” is meant to introduce pianists, or just folks interested in the organ, to the pipe organ.  It will be held Saturday, February 8th, at 10:00 AM at South Park United Methodist Church. If you know a pianist who would like to learn to play the organ or a parishioner who is just curious, encourage them to come. If you’d like to help just call or email Jerry Taylor, and he’ll get you involved.


Hope to See You Soon!

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