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Maior Dei Gloria Organ Makes Its Concert Debut


Ken Cowan Contributed photo

The first concert of the season will feature the new Maior Dei Gloria organ and an internationally acclaimed young concert organist to showcase the organ’s range of music.
A concert featuring Ken Cowan will take place on Sunday, Sept. 8 at 4 p.m. in the University Church at Fordham’s Rose Hill campus.

Schoenstein & Co. built the massive custom made instrument, which replaced Fordham’s Tracker organ last year. The Maior Dei Gloriaorgan was completed in November 2012 after years of preparation and construction. The organ is used regularly to accompany liturgies and concerts at Fordham.

“The new Maior Dei Gloria organ consists of over 2,776 pipes that combined create a myriad of tonal sounds, ” said Robert Minotti, director of Fordham University Choirs.

In what Minotti says is the instrument’s “debut concert,” Cowan “has prepared a program specifically to showcase the many different sound possibilities of the new organ.” He will perform standard works such as those by Johann Sebastian Bach and Charles-Marie Widor, unusual works such as an organ transcription of the Prelude to Act III of Wagner’s romantic opera Lohengrin, and a new work by composer Rachel Laurin titled “Beelzebub’s Laugh.”

Cowan is an associate professor of organ and head of the organ program at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University.

The new organ was made possible by the generosity of Stephen E. Bepler, FCRH ‘64; his wife, Kim B. Bepler; the late George Doty, FCRH ‘38; Joelle and Brian Kelly LAW ‘95; and John C. Walton, FCRH ‘72 and Jeanette D. Walton, TMC ‘71, GSAS ‘73.

The concert is open to the public. For more information, contact Jake Braithwaite at 212-636-7501 or visit Fordham’s Campus MInistry page.  

The Maior Dei Gloria Organ at the University Church Photo by Chris Taggart


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