Music

Spivey Hall Celebrates ‘King Of Instruments’ In New Season

The 2016-2017 season marks Spivey Hall's 25th year with the grand Albert Schweitzer Memorial Organ.
The 2016-2017 season marks Spivey Hall's 25th year with the grand Albert Schweitzer Memorial Organ.
Credit Courtesy of Spivey Hall

Spivey Hall is pulling out all the stops for their upcoming season; 2016-2017 marks Spivey’s 26th year as one of the world’s finest concert halls, and its 25th year with the grand Albert Schweitzer Memorial Organ. 

Sam Dixon, Spivey Hall’s executive and artistic director, knows the value of this organ well.

“To think of Spivey Hall without the organ is impossible,” Dixon told Lois Reitzes on “City Lights,” “because the organ was central to Emilie Spivey’s conception of the Hall from the very beginning.”

Since its completion, the instrument has attracted organ virtuosi the world over, but it’s a home-grown talent who will benefit first from a new endowment.

Decatur-born Alan Morrison is the recipient the McGehee Family Organist Residency, a five-year residency made possible with the financial support of Shelley, Terry and Linda McGehee. Dixon said that Morrison, who is now head of organ studies at the Curtis Institute of Music, “will help us celebrate season 26 in  a very special way.” 

But Spivey’s 26th season will kick off not with a concert, but with an “Organ Discovery Day” on September 10.

This free event features Spivey Hall’s new educational video, “The King of Instruments: History, Science, and Music of the Pipe Organ.” Morrison, along with two other organ experts, will be on hand afterwards for a Q&A session. The “Organ Discovery Day” also features a screening of the documentary “Architects of Sound,” which follows the creation of the Albert Schweitzer Memorial Organ from inception to dedication.

Dixon and Lois Reitzes also talked about returning artists in Spivey Hall’s upcoming season, as well as Spivey debuts and approaches to programming.

The complete season brochure is available on Spivey Hall’s website.