The Wichita Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, Established 1954
Since the Children’s Pipe Organ Project POPs for KIDs was established in 1991, it has reached many children each year. Requests come in from all over the country for the project’s Organ Crawl video and numerous other materials available now. It has also received national recognition through articles in The American Organist, and program spots in recent AGO conventions. As POPs moves into its third decade, it is developing an Internet-based Teaching Unit that was released in August, 2012, introduced nationally in the May 2013 issue of The American Organist, and was demonstrated at the national convention in Boston in 2014.
In 2002, after five years raising funds, the Wichita Chapter began sponsoring an Organ Study Scholarship program which awards scholarships to young keyboard players. Recipients are able to apply their scholarship to 10 lessons with Wichita Chapter organists or to attend one of the POE’s sponsored by the AGO. Annual auditions are held in March for these awards, and the application form is available on line.
AGO members have the option of professional certification by examination in the following categories: as Service-Player and Choir Master; as well as Colleague, Associate, and Fellow of the American Guild of Organists. (The Guild is a degree-granting institution via its 1896 charter with the Board of Regents of the State of New York.)
The Chapter’s newsletter, The Air Capital Clarion, is issued on a monthly basis during the school year. It includes news about Chapter programs and special events; a calendar of upcoming organ and choral events; listings of open organ and choral positions; occasional listings of instruments for sale; and a list of substitute organists available for churches needing them.