International artists test Victoria pipes

July 25, American organist Peter Richard Conte will play Alix Goolden Hall’s historic 1910 Casavant instrument.

The Victoria Centre of the Royal Canadian College of Organists’s Pipes Around the Pacific 2010 festival garnered such enthusiasm for Victoria’s organ venues and the music heard within them, that the decision was easily made to present subsequent festivals.

Next week three of the world’s finest concert organists will arrive in Victoria, offering the opportunity to hear brilliant performances on each of the city’s three largest pipe organs.

Wednesday, July 25, American organist Peter Richard Conte will play Alix Goolden Hall’s historic 1910 Casavant instrument.

Conte is Grand Court Organist of the world famous Wanamaker Organ at Macy’s Philadelphia department store. It’s the largest fully functioning musical instrument in the world. In addition to his concert career, he serves as Choirmaster and Organist of St. Clement’s Church, Philadelphia.

Thursday, July 26, Canadian native David Enlow performs on St. John the Divine’s remarkable 1961 Casavant. He is Organist and Choir Master of the Church of the Resurrection in New York City.

Friday, July 27, the final festival concert will feature Montreal organist Isabelle Demers at the magnificent 2005 Helmuth Wolff organ of Christ Church Cathedral.

The public is invited to come and enjoy three wonderful musical evenings – and the chance to compare and contrast three distinctive musical personalities performing at the three very different pipe organ venues on Quadra Street in downtown Victoria.

All concerts begin at 8 p.m. Tickets are available in advance at Long and McQuade, Ivy’s Book Shop, Munro’s Books, offices of St. John the Divine and Christ Church Cathedral, or at the door on concert evenings. Single Ticket: $25, Festival Pass – for all three concerts: $65. Performers’ bios and program details are on the festival website at rcco-victoria.org/festival.