August is here, a reminder that summer is two thirds over! For the Drewes family, it’s been a great one so far – camping, hiking, and of course, the Seattle AGO National Convention, which was just superb. And now, even while anticipating another getaway before the summer is over, I find myself on alert as September approaches, with all its attendant duties resumed, wonderful even if hectic at times.
Gardening helps me appreciate the measure of time. At our house, the garlic has cured, the second planting of peas has popped through the soil, as has the first planting of beans. We’ve been eating blueberries for a month, and strawberries are finally taking off. We are too hot with this heat wave, but the tomatoes, basil and peppers are basking in glory. Even the notoriously fussy carrot seeds have sprouted. Successive harvests are coming, and by September, plans for the over-wintering garden will have begun.
The TAGO board has also been planting seeds, cultivating ideas for a year’s worth of varied and engaging programs. I encourage you to join us for the first three:
- Saturday, September 17: Opening Picnic Hosted by David Dahl and Loi Le in their beautiful backyard garden. Social time is from 4:30 – 5:30, with food served at 5:30. Bring a food item as you are able.
- Monday, October 17: Fright Night Cheryl Drewes performs spooktacular organ music and accompanies the silent movie “Haunted House,” starring Buster Keaton. Spanaway Lutheran Church.
- Monday, November 14: Celebrating Margaret Sandresky Wyatt Smith presents a program celebrating the life and organ compositions of Margaret Sandresky. Wesley Homes Gardens, Des Moines.
One more seed to plant: the application process for the TAGO organ scholarship is now open. The scholarship is intended to encourage young musicians to study organ by assisting in the cost of private lessons with a teacher who is a member of the TAGO. Applications, which require a written essay and audio recording, must be received by September 30, 2022. For more information, please see our website.
Cheers, and enjoy the rest of the summer!
Now at the beginning of my term as dean, I find myself so thankful as I think about the past two years. I was asked to be sub-dean near the beginning of the pandemic, and though there were challenges, the executive committee continued to give time, imagination, and creativity to bring events of the highest quality to our members, all via Zoom meeting that first year. As well, our presenters were willing to dive into the unfamiliar – after all, none of us were taught videography and broadcasting – to create stellar programs well suited to the novel technology. During the transition to in-person gatherings, everyone kept at it, for a fruitful and engaging two years. A huge thank-you to all: executive committee, presenters, and especially Sheila Bristow, for her positive, levelheaded leadership as Dean!
Looking ahead, the convention is very soon to begin. It is sure to be a wonderful week of concerts, workshops, and the chance to get reacquainted with colleagues near and far. I’m particularly interested in the convention’s focus, “The Well Tempered Future” given that Tim and I have made church music our life’s work – so many decades – and now our son, Isaac, is following the same path. The landscape is different now, with both opportunity and promise, and it is so encouraging to watch the next generation, in their creativity and initiative, find their way!
In closing, I would like to recognize those on our executive committee who have completed their terms: Sheila Bristow, who will pass the baton and continue as member at large, and Satya Jaech and David Dahl, who both completed their terms as member at large and will remain actively involved in chapter events. I am delighted to introduce new executive board members Wyatt Smith as sub dean, and Jan Regier as member at large. Welcome, and thank you for stepping up!
This is my final column after serving two years as Dean and two years as Sub Dean. I had an inkling things might not be a cakewalk four years ago, when the newly-elected Dean moved out of the state–but that of course was nothing compared to the pandemic! Many thanks to Cheryl Drewes for facilitating online programming, and to those folks who created it. Helping the chapter continue in education and connection during the shutdown was a labor of love. I look forward to remaining on the board for one more term, and cheering on Cheryl and Wyatt Smith as the new Dean/Sub Dean team. Please give them all your support as well!
As I’m writing this I am also creating a packing list for a LONG overdue vacation. I hope that you have wonderful summer plans as well, but before digging out the luggage may I suggest a quick checklist of guild-related matters?
- Make sure you have this Monday’s picnic on your calendar!
- If you’re tidying your desk, console, music files (piles!), etc–jot down any ideas you’d like to share with the board regarding future programming/events.
- I hope you already have this year’s National Convention in your book (July 3-7). Monday, July 4, is the “Tacoma Day”, and there are events scheduled from 9 AM to 4 PM at Christ Church, Pacific Lutheran University,Trinity Lutheran, and the University of Puget Sound. The current “day registration” rate for July 4 is $200 for regular AGO members; that day rate would of course also include the evening activities in Seattle (a cocktail hour concert with Carol Williams, and a theater organ concert/silent movie at the Paramount with Tedde Gibson). The convention steering committee is also seeking volunteers to help host the Tacoma events–if you’d like to lend a hand, let me know and I’ll get you connected up.
Hope to see you Monday!
National Convention schedule
Yesterday I had the pleasure of joining fellow chapter members for an organ tour in Seattle. It was fascinating to hear four wonderful trackers in four very different rooms, played by a number of organists! I also appreciated getting info on a lot of organ building details. Many thanks to David Dahl for his organizing efforts, and to Kyle Haugen, Tim Drewes, and Tom Clark for hosting at their respective churches.
As the program year winds to a close, stay tuned for news of a closing social event–and also watch your inbox for a slate of officers. As always, if you have ideas or suggestions for chapter events, please pass them along to any board member (I’ll continue to serve as past dean, so you can certainly send them to me). Happy spring!
As the pandemic wanes I’ve celebrated every little “new” reason to leave the house: in-person rehearsals! Libraries! Trader Joe’s without a line! And, finally, concerts. During March I’ve managed to attend Seattle Opera–twice (a full production and an artist recital)–plus a Seattle Symphony concert. This week I also made it to the Tacoma Art Museum (FYI free every Thursday night). The pandemic has fostered an incredible flourishing of art experiences and education available online, but that is not a replacement for experiencing art in the physical world.
Our March meeting featured lovely performances on the beautiful instruments at Spanaway Lutheran, plus an opportunity to chat with fellow guild members over a glass of wine. I am so grateful to all the folks who helped out with planning, playing, and hosting–particularly Cheryl Drewes. Next month’s meeting will feature an organ crawl in Seattle on Saturday, April 30th. Please watch the website and your inbox for details!