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

If you’re reading this you survived the holidays; Thanksgiving, Advent, Christmas, Epiphany and it seems Easter is tomorrow. And, yes we love every second of it. However, no matter how much we love our work, the power bill still needs to be paid and they won’t pump gas in your car for free. So many of us ask for compensation for playing services at our churches. If we are asking for compensation then how do you prove that you have studied and practiced and worked to refine your skills making you a skilled professional worthy of your pay?

One of the easiest ways is to pass the AGO Service Playing Exam. It’s really what you do every Saturday or Sunday morning: Play a service for an examiner and prove you know what you’re doing. Effie Sue Kemerley and Janet Burkett have done it. Judy Bede is our chapter’s examination officer. This is what the test is about.

1. Play a prelude. This year it’s something from Bach’s Liturgical Year or one of the Fugues from the Bach Eight Little Preludes and Fugues.

2. Play a hymn – which you will transpose up or down. Agreed this is the hardest thing on the exam. Fortunately there are tricks to help you do this easier.

3. Accompany two anthems. (Yes, there is a list for you to choose from.)

4. Accompany a Psalm (piece of cake when you actually know what you’re doing.)

5. Two more hymns as though we were singing.

6. A piece from the list for the offertory

7. A piece from the list for the postlude.


Yes, you probably do all of this every Sunday. Doing it in front of an examiner proves that you are a certified service player and play to a certain standard worth your compensation. Want to know more?

On Sunday afternoon, January 21 at 3:00pm at Christ United Methodist Church on Shroyer road, several of your colleagues will demonstrate various parts of the exam and I’ll give several reasons why you should take the time to take it. We will also share some tips for the transposition of the hymn and we have the hymnbook from the AGO to give to you. Hope to see you there!




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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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