On April 17, 2024

Organist James D. Hicks in concert in Rutland

Courtesy gracechurchvt.org
James D. Hicks, a concert organist, will perform at Grace Church Sanctuary in Rutland, showcasing his extensive Nordic music research and releasing a a new commissioned work.

Sunday, April 21 at 4 p.m.—RUTLAND— Organist James D. Hicks will perform at Grace Church Santuary, 8 Court St., Rutland. Hicks is a concert organist living and working out of Califon, NJ. A graduate of the Peabody Conservatory of Music, Yale University, and the University of Cincinnati, Hicks has also studied at the Royal School of Church Music in the UK. James held liturgical positions throughout the USA over the course of 35 years and now devotes himself to concert, publishing, and recording .

Over the past 15 years, James has researched the music of the Nordic lands and the result is an ongoing venture entitled “Nordic Journey.” The endeavor places emphasis on new music; he has commissioned over sixty compositions from Nordic composers, as well as researching repertoire from the past that has hitherto never been recorded or published. With the December  2023 release of “Nordic Journey Volume XV,” ” Baltic Sojourn,” the series will now comprise 24 discs, all produced for the American label Pro Organo as well as being distributed by Naxos and the usual digital streaming platforms.

A parallel aspect of the “Nordic Journey” project is the production of hardbound editions that include premiere publications of many of the works Hicks has commissioned as well as several previously unavailable compositions from earlier eras. The Norwegian firm Cantando released the “Nordic Journey Series” Volume I in 2018 (now available at musikkforlagene.no) and Norsk Musikforlag published “The Nordic Journey Series” Volume II in 2020 (musikkforlagene.no). Norsk Musikforlag has most recently produced the third volume in October 2022. A fourth volume of this series is set for a mid 2024 release. In addition, James has collaborated with the Finnish publisher, Edition Tilli (editiontilli.fi), in the production of premiere editions of Finnish and Baltic organ music.

Upcoming recording projects include the double-disc “Nordic Journey XVI-North Atlantic Voyage,” an August 2024 recording of music from Norway, mainland Scotland, the Hebrides, Orkney, Shetland, Faroe, Iceland, Greenland and Newfoundland. This endeavor will be produced in northern Norway at Bodø Cathedral. This recording will include a new piece by Alastair Stout called “Skylark Variations,” commissioned by James Hicks. Hicks will give the world premiere of the “Skylark Variations” on the church’s Aeolian-Skinner pipe organ.

Free admission. 

For more information, visit: gracechurchvt.org

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