Organ Studies News

Organist Thomas Mellan takes first place at San Diego competition

August 9, 2016

Thomas Mellan, a USC Thornton junior double-majoring in Organ Studies and Composition, recently took first place in the keyboard division of the Musical Merit Foundation’s competition for instrumentalists and vocalists, earning the distinction of Fenstermaker Scholar. Mellan, who also took the top prize in the 2015 competition, performed at the foundation’s 70th Annual Awards Concert […]


Organ student Weicheng Zhao takes AGO competition prizes

June 27, 2016

Weicheng Zhao (MM ’14), a doctoral candidate in the USC Thornton Organ Studies department, recently won both 3rd Place and the Audience Prize at the American Guild of Organists (AGO) National Young Artists Competition in Organ Performance (NYACOP). Zhao studies with Thornton faculty members Ladd Thomas and Cherry Rhodes. The NYACOP competition, which took place […]


Extraordinary young organist begins studies at USC Thornton

September 15, 2015

Incoming USC Thornton freshman Organ Studies major Ethan Haman was the subject of a recent feature profile by the Los Altos Town Crier. The 17-year-old began serving as his church’s official organist three years ago and has since gone on to study with master organists in Europe. Haman’s Northern California community bid him farewell with […]


Organ Studies faculty Cherry Rhodes and alum Christoph Bull reviewed in the Los Angeles Times

December 2, 2014

Organ Studies faculty Cherry Rhodes and alum Christoph Bull (MM ’93, organ performance) joined an elite group of organists for a birthday celebration of the Walt Disney Concert Hall’s organ, Hurricane Mama, with a concert on Nov. 23. The program, which featured nine performers, was reviewed by music critic Mark Swed in the Los Angeles […]


Happy Birthday, Hurricane Mama! USC Thornton faculty and alumni celebrate the LA Phil’s famed organ this weekend

November 19, 2014

Beginning on Thursday and running through the weekend, the Los Angeles Philharmonic celebrates the anniversary of the Walt Disney Concert Hall’s famous organ, Hurricane Mama, with a series of concerts. As Mark Swed wrote in the Los Angeles Times, “But no other organ looks like French fries, a thrilling trademark of the Frank Gehry hall’s […]


Weicheng Zhao and Fang Gao to perform at Calgary Organ Festival and Symposium

October 28, 2014

Current USC Thornton doctoral candidate Weicheng Zhao (MM ’14, DMA ’16) is one of two organists to perform on the Young Artists’ Platform during the Calgary Organ Festival and Symposium.  His wife Fang Gao (GCRT, ’16), who is currently a student in the Early  Music program, will join him in a concert at the Cathedral Church of the Redeemer in […]


Francine Nguyen-Savaria (GCRT, ’13) to perform at Calgary Organ Festival and Symposium

October 24, 2014

Francine Nguyen-Savaria (GCRT, ’13) is one of two organists selected to perform on the Young Artists’ Platform during the Calgary Organ Festival and Symposium in Canada. She will perform the complete works for organ by Brahms over two recitals: at the Cathedral Church of the Redeemer in Calgary on October 29, and at the Wyatt Recital […]


Cherry Rhodes to perform at Organ Artists Series of Pittsburgh

October 21, 2014

USC Thornton faculty member Cherry Rhodes will play the opening recital on the Organ Artists Series of Pittsburgh, presented by the Pittsburgh Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, on October 26 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Rhodes will play selections by Brahms, Bach, Moussorgsky and Antalffy-Zsiross. The series is dedicated to promoting the performance, recognition and appreciation of organ music as an art form.


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