Organ and Harpsichord

The organ and harpsichord programs at Illinois are designed to develop excellence in solo performance and ensemble playing, and to encourage knowledge of different national styles and schools within a wide range of repertoire.

The organ and harpsichord faculty is dedicated to historical keyboard practices, offering courses in historical performance practice, basso continuo accompaniment, tuning and temperament, organ history and design, organ & harpsichord literature, and ensemble performance.

In addition to private instruction and courses directly related to organ and harpsichord, the curriculum includes study in history and theory, composition, choral conducting, and pedagogy.

Performance opportunities include participation in a number of ensembles, including choral groups and Concerto Urbano, the university’s period instrument group.

Our students have won top prizes in organ and harpsichord competitions, including national competitions sponsored by the American Guild of Organists, and the Jurow Competition sponsored by the Historical Keyboard Society of North America.

The university owns eight harpsichords, including a double manual French harpsichord by John Phillips (Berkeley, CA), a double manual Saxon by Willard Martin (Bethlehem, PA), a double manual French by William Dowd (Boston, MA), and a Flemish virginal by Malcolm Rose (London, UK).