Marie-Louise Jaquet-Langlais, widow of the great French organist and composer, Jean Langlais, is opening the 2012-2013 season Rie Bloomfield Organ Series with a recital on Tuesday, October 2 at 7:30 pm featuring a mini-lecture complete with visual material about her husband and French organ music. In her master class on Wednesday, October 3, she will listen to several young organ students from the organ programs at WSU and KU on the great Marcussen organ in Wiedemann Hall.
Marie-Louise Jaquet-Langlais was born in Casablanca in 1943. After graduating with a law degree from the University of Strasbourg, she studied organ with Jean Langlais at the Schola Cantorum in Paris, where in 1969 she gained the diploma for virtuosity and improvisation. At the same time she completed a masterâ€™s degree in musicology at the Institute of Musicology in Paris. She became organist at the Temple Saint Jean de Mulhouse and then assistant to Jean Langlais at Sainte Clotilde in Paris. Marie-Louise married Jean Langlais in 1979. She has since devoted herself to teaching organ and she has taught at the National Conservatoire of the Region of Marseille, the Schola Cantorum and the National Conservatoire in Paris, where she is currently professor of organ. She is an expert in the Sainte Clotilde School (Franck, Tournemire and Langlais) and, in 1995, she published a book devoted to Jean Langlais, Ombre et LumiÃ¨re, (Editions Combre) for which she was awarded a special prize from the French Institute in 1999.
David Baskeyfield is the winner of the first prize and audience prize at the St Albans International Organ Competition, 2011. Following success in a number of earlier competitions, he has launched a performing career encompassing both interpretation and improvisation.
Aside from solo performance, David is active as an accompanist, continuo player and occasional cocktail pianist. As an outgrowth of his interest in classical organ improvisation, he has taken to accompanying silent movies; recent engagements have featured The Phantom of the Opera (1925) and Nosferatu (1922). He also enjoys occasional access to the large Wurlitzer organ in the Auditorium Theatre in downtown Rochester, and has gone some way to legitimising this private indulgence in being elected as a director on the Board of the Rochester Theatre Organ Society. He has been broadcast a number of times on American Public Media's Pipedreams, playing repertoire and improvisations.
Percussion and organ, a somewhat surprising combination with a surprisingly pleasing sound, now has its own duo of performers. Clive Driskill-Smith, the young English organist sensation, has teamed up with the young American percussion virtuoso Joseph Gramley.
Clive Driskill-Smith is one of the leading organists of his generation. Hailed as a "star of a new generation" (Evening Standard), critics have praised his "blazing technique" and "unbelievable virtuosity" (American Guild of Organists) and described his performances as "intensely moving" and "truly breathtaking" (Organo Pleno Melbourne).
Multi-percussionist Joseph Gramley is a charismatic performer who radiates energy and a magnetic stage presence. As The Post and Courier in Charleston, SC described a Spoleto Festival appearance, "Gifted percussionist Joseph Gramley, playing a formidable battery of instruments, required athletic as well as musical ability to manage this one man band....the overall effect was attention-grabbing and memorable."