Organ Composition Premier

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Organist David Arcus opens the 2010-2011 Duke Organ Recital Series
Friday, September 17, 2010

David Arcus, chapel organist and associate university organist at Duke University, will present the first concert of the Duke University Organ Recital Series 2010-2011 in Goodson Chapel on Sept. 19.

His program will include the world premiere of Marianne Ploger’s Toccata and Fugue in G Minor, which was commissioned by Duke Divinity School to commemorate the installation of the Richards, Fowkes & Co. organ that was installed in Goodson Chapel in 2008. The composition was written specifically for the two-manual, 30-stop organ and is its first commissioned piece.

The free, hour-long recital is open to the public and will be performed twice: at 2:30 p.m. and again at 5 p.m. The organ recital series is sponsored by Duke Chapel and the Duke Department of Music.

Ploger, the director of the Musicianship Program at the Blair School of Music of Vanderbilt University, is also a performer (early and modern piano), composer, conductor, teacher, coach, and author. Her specialty is in musical perception and aural analysis.

“An original composition is often commissioned for a new organ and also for organs that have reached a significant milestone in years of existence, such as 50, 75, and certainly 100,” said Arcus. “In addition, a work might be commissioned for the organist who presides at the organ and who is celebrating a significant anniversary in the post.”

Although the composition written for the Goodson Chapel organ is new, Arcus said it references the organ’s historically-informed tonal disposition and design, as well as references Psalm 114 as a scriptural context.

Learn more about the organ series »

See a video about the installation of the Divinity School’s Goodson Chapel Organ in 2008 »