Thunder Bay is the most populous municipality in Northwestern Ontario, and the second most populous in Northern Ontario after Greater Sudbury. The city takes its name from the immense bay at the head of Lake Superior. The city is often referred to as the Lakehead or Canadian Lakehead beacuse of its location at the end of the Great Lakes navigation. Though a somewhat isolated community, the RCCO members are 18 strong and devote ourselves to getting young people to discover the pipe organ and to putting on organ concerts to show off the instruments in the region.
There are 11 pipe organs in the area; one is not sounding as it needs repair. Some of the other ten are sometimes abandoned for a keyboard or recorded hymns as nobody knows how to play them. Our mission at the RCCO here is to keep the pipe organs sounding! Part of our efforts are directed towards our Scholarships offered by applicaion and audition each fall for ten FREE organ lessons. We offer up to four scholarships and each candidate is judged on their own merit as students of piano are at many different levels of expertise. If you are a member of the public reading this, you should know that this largest of instruments, the pipe organ, is in churches because they are generally the largest buildings about. This however does not mean that all the organ literature is church oriented and I would venture to say probably about 80% is secular music. Should you be a younger person reading this, you need to know that as an organist you will be able to play higher than any instrument, lower than any instrument and make more noise than any instrument...including amplified rock bands. And we do it all with just air! In addition, being an organist is a great way to make some extra money!
Another objective of our RCCO centre is to provide members of the public with enjoyable concerts featuring the pipe organ. If we can't find a recitalist, we put on concerts ourselves!
You don't have to be an organist to belong to our Centre and anyone with an interest in choral music or organ music is most welcome.
Have I interested you? Want to know more? Would you like to just "fiddle around" with pipe organ and see what music you can make using some of your piano music? We can arrange for you to do this!
Herman Dost (President)
Patricia Mark (Recording Secretary)
Verna Puhalski (Treasurer)
Betty White (Professional Support)