Organ Dedication Concert at St. Martin’s a Winner!
By Gerard Montana
It is Sunday evening, Feb 21, 2010 - 6:00. I’m wondering how many people in Davis are thinking, “Should we go to church for a pipe organ recital? Or stay home and watch the Olympics?” For the ones who decided to go to the organ recital - the decision was not a mistake. The church was almost full. After all, the Olympics can be recorded. For live music, one has to be, well… live!
At 7pm a very young looking Nathan Laube walked out to the new console of the pipe organ at St. Martin’s Church in Davis and bowed. Nathan’s bright smile complimented his “white tie and tails.” Wow, he sure looked young. But, Double WOW, he sure could play the organ! The church vibrated from the thundering bass of the organ. His nimble fingers and feet flew around the new instrument with obvious deep concentration. He played the entire hour and 20 minute program from memory. There was music for everyone. He smiled as he introduced each piece and explained a little of what we were going to hear. It was marvelous. Even the children in the room were quiet and attentive. The organists there got to hear the French Romantic music of Cesar Franck, an erudite Mendelssohn Sonata, and the newbies got to hear the “Die Feldermaus” waltz and the “William Tell Overture.” Wonderful! The concert ended with a standing ovation.
Nathan has a lot of charisma at 21 years old. He just graduated from college last year. He is going on to begin his post-graduate degree in the fall in Europe. I was so happy we got Nathan to play this concert for us. I had done my part on Sunday mornings to show the congregation what the new organ was capable of - including playing the “Cal Fight Song” for Bishop Barry Beisner during his visitation! (In case you’re wondering, yes, Barry sang along.) But Nathan showed us again what a great gift the pipe organ was to the parish. It enhances our worship today and it will be here for future generations to enjoy as well. The Olympics couldn’t do that!
Director of Music and Organist, Church of St. Martin, Davis, California
Dean, Sacramento Chapter, American Guild of Organists
Member, Association of Anglican Musicians