View "The Music of the Pipe Organ" by the news magazine NH Chronicle, highlighting two YOC students and the work of Young Organist Collaborative.
Who We Are
The Young Organist Collaborative (YOC) is a program designed to invest in the next generation of organists. While we are an outreach program of St. John’s Church, our separately administered funds come from direct donations to the YOC. All (100%) of our donations are spent on scholarships and promotion of the program.
YOC became a ministry of St. John's in November, 2001 when Bishop Douglas Theuner gave the parish $1,000 at the blessing and dedication of St. John's new Letourneau organ. Presenting the check to Dianne Dean, who was at that time organist and choir director, he charged St. John's with the responsibility of helping young people learn to play the pipe organ and become the next generation of church organists.
YOC was formed to develop this ecumenical ministry and has enjoyed great success. The first group of students began lessons in the fall of 2002. Thanks to scores of donors since then, we have given scholarships for organ lessons to more than 100 youth of various denominations in New Hampshire, Maine, and Massachusetts, enabling them to take lessons with area organists.
The Young Organist Collaborative has former students who have gone through prestigious conservatory organ programs and won major competitions. Some are now serving as career church musicians.
How It all Works
Who is eligible? Students may apply for the YOC scholarship if they will be 10 years old by September of their audition year, have a minimum of two years’ piano lessons, read music, and are able to play equally with both hands. Each year in May we audition students who have applied to the program. The application form and informational flyer can be found at the bottom of this webpage.
Where do lessons happen? Those who are accepted are paired with organists who teach near where the students live. This enables us to accept students from the tri-state area of northern Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and southern Maine. Our range has been as far as Peru, ME, Nashua, Manchester and Concord, NH, and Amesbury, MA. Students practice at their home churches or are helped to find other alternatives if an organ is not available where they worship.
We also give students opportunities for further exposure to the pipe organ by arranging field trips. In the past these have included visits to local organ builders' workshops and open console organ crawls in the region. We arrange annual master classes and recitals for our students.
How much does this cost? Accepted students receive a 100% scholarship for their first year of lessons. YOC pays the teachers directly and the lessons are given every other week during the school year. Second-year students may be eligible for a partial scholarship. Students beyond the second year may audition for the prestigious Penn Brown Scholarship.
Anyone interested in learning more about YOC and/or interested in joining our committee may email Crystal Joos at firstname.lastname@example.org
Donate online to Young Organist Collaborative at our St. John's Online Donation Website managed by EasyTithe.