Winnipeg Organ Festival

WOF 2If you love organ and choral music, then you should mark July 4 to 9, 2015 on your calendars. The Winnipeg Organ Festival (WOF) will bring to Winnipeg organists from across Canada and beyond to enjoy 5 days of concerts, workshops and worship featuring “The King of Instruments”. The general public is welcome to attend all the concerts.
This Festival is being organized by the Winnipeg Centre of the Royal Canadian College of Organists, Canada’s oldest musicians’ organization which aims to “promote and facilitate opportunities for access to, appreciation of, and participation in all facets of the organ …”. The WOF planning committee has been working hard for 2 years already to develop a program which will rival the phenomenal artistic success of the 2004 Festival which some of you may recall.
For the complete program, check our website at
Some of the highlights are:
Gala Concert at Westminster United Church with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Alexander Mickelthwate conducting. Renowned American organist James David Christie will be the soloist in a program that includes the well-known Organ Concerto by Poulenc and the exciting concerto for Organ and Strings by Canada’s Denis Bédard.

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Deitrich Bartel. Photo Credit: Canadian Mennonite University

Choral Concert at Westminster United Church featuring the Festival Chorus directed by Dr. Elroy Friesen with organist, Jenny Vincent. The program will have a human rights theme and we are looking forward to the world première of newly commissioned works for choir and organ by Andrew Balfour, Timothy Corlis, Leonard Enns, Stephanie Martin and Heidi Ouellette.
Hymn Festival at Knox United Church led by Christine Longhurst, with organist Richard Greig and praise band. Here’s your opportunity to actively participate!
Competition for young organists from across Canada. Both semi-final and final rounds will be free admission!


Tanis Kolisnyk
Tanis Kolisnyk

Anglican churches will figure prominently throughout the Festival. Holy Trinity with its newly expanded organ, will be setting of an evening recital and the Competition Finals. St. John’s College Chapel (University of Manitoba) will be used for workshops. All Saints will host the RCCO College Service, with Dietrich Bartel and Tanis Kolisnyk involved in leadership. St. Margaret’s will host a Morning Prayer service, Ruth Widdicombe Music Director. The RCCO convocation will take place at St. George’s Crescentwood. The winner of the 2012 RCCO Competition will perform at St. Luke’s. Finally, to reflect the reality that pipe organs are often out of reach due to financial constraints, Russ Greene, Music Director at St. Andrew’s Woodhaven will discuss “The Digital Alternative” using the Phoenix digital organ there.


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Russ Green. Photo Credit: Winnipeg Free Press

Single tickets will be available in the New Year for all concerts but passes to the evening concerts will be available in early November at the early bird price of $70 ($60 for students under 25 with a valid card). This is a very significant saving over the single ticket prices so don’t delay – this offer is in place until Dec. 31, 2014. Call Karen at 204-453-6962 or email [email protected] Passes would make a wonderful Christmas gift for the music lovers on your list!
Linda Fearn
Music Director, St. Peter’s Anglican Church
Vice-chair of the Winnipeg Organ Festival committee

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