“Pipes, Dances, and Drums” features dances from different countries including Hungary, Mexico, and the United States. Guest organist and Macon native, Robert McCormick, grandson of Mary Jean and Charlie Yates, will join us for two of the pieces, including the Organ Symphony by French composer Camille Saint-Saëns. Plentiful percussion in each piece will leave you energized and refreshed!
In Honor of Charlie Yates and In Memory of Mary Jean Yates
Travis Jürgens, 2nd place winner of the American Prize in Orchestral Conducting (2011), is in his fourth season as Music Director of the Philharmonia of Kansas City. He is also the Associate Conductor of the Boulder Philharmonic and a cover conductor for the Colorado Symphony. Previously he served as the Associate Conductor of the Lamont Symphony. For two consecutive summers, Travis was selected by Marin Alsop to attend the Conductors Guild Workshop at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music.
Jürgens has performed in the United States, Europe, and Japan. He has been praised as “a superior conductor” and “well on his way to becoming a major conductor in the world of symphony orchestras” (Opus Colorado). He has conducted the Alabama and Colorado Symphony Orchestras, Denver Philharmonic, Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic, Illinois Valley Symphony, Rose City Chamber Orchestra, South Carolina Philharmonic, and the Orquestra de Cadaqués.
He earned his Bachelor’s in Piano from Indiana University, and his Master’s in Orchestral Conducting from the University of Illinois. Additionally, he studied at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien and the Institut für Europäishe Studien in Vienna, Austria, where he guest conducted the IES Vienna Chamber Orchestra. Travis’ primary conducting teachers include Donald Schleicher, David Effron, and Lawrence Golan. Additionally, he has received instruction from Michael Tilson Thomas, Marin Alsop, Gustav Meier, Larry Rachleff, Steven Byess, and many others. As an advocate of new music, Jürgens has performed many world premieres by emerging composers, and continues to create innovative programs to engage communities.
Robert McCormick, described by Choir and Organ as “indomitable and immensely gifted” and as “an artist of rare sensitivity and passion” by The Macon Telegraph, is Director of Music at St. Paul’s Parish, K Street, Washington, D.C. At St. Paul’s he conducts the various choirs of adults, boys, and girls in approximately 175 choral services yearly (including weekly Evensong, year-round). From 2001—2008 he served as Organist and Music Director at the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, New York City. He holds the Bachelor of Music degree in organ performance, summa cum laude, from Westminster Choir College, Princeton, New Jersey. Concurrently, he was Assistant Organist at Trinity Church, Princeton. His teachers have included McNeil Robinson and Robert Carwithen. Known for his ability in organ improvisation, McCormick was named a semi-finalist in the 2005 St. Albans International Organ Festival Improvisation Competition. Concert appearances across the United States include the Riverside Church (New York), the Jongen Symphonie Concertante with the Macon (Georgia) Symphony Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Organ Artists Series, the East Texas Organ Festival, Basically Bach Festival at St. Peter’s Lutheran (New York ), the Great Organists series at St. John’s Cathedral in Albuquerque (New Mexico), a New York City Pipe Organ Encounters, the Atlanta Summer Organ Festival, and recitals and workshops for local American Guild of Organists chapters nationwide. He has been a featured artist and clinician at numerous conventions and conferences of the AGO and the Association of Anglican Musicians. As a composer, his choral works are published by Encore (UK) and Selah. He served for two years as sub-dean of the New York City chapter of the AGO and is a member of the Alumni Council of Westminster Choir College. The most recent recording from St. Paul’s, K Street, We Sing of God, was released in June 2010 on the Pro Organo label. Choir and Organ’s review of the disc describes the choir as “one of the most responsive and adaptable choirs on the Eastern seaboard” and further states that “[McCormick] also shines at the organ.”