Isabelle Demers is Organ Professor and Head of the Organ Program at Baylor University in Texas, where she teaches applied organ and courses in the organ curriculum. A native of Québec, she is rapidly becoming recognized as one of North America’s most virtuosic organists. Her concert at the 2010 national convention of the American Guild of Organists, in Washington, D.C., was received with great acclaim not only by critics, who deemed it “one of the most outstanding events of the convention” (The American Organist), but also by the standing-room-only audience, which called her back five times. A review of her concert for the joint ISO-AIO convention in 2010 said that “she enchanted the entire audience with her virtuoso performance,” leaving the entire congress in an atmosphere of “Demers fever.”
She began piano and organ study at age eleven at the Montréal Conservatory of Music. After graduation in 2003 she studied on scholarship for a year in Paris at the École Normale de Paris-Alfred Cortot. She received her Master’s and Doctoral degrees from The Juilliard School in New York City, where she studied with Paul Jacobs.
Recent engagements include the cathedrals of Cologne and Regensburg in Germany, St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, the Royal Opera House of Muscat, Oman, as well as major universities and concert halls in the United States, among them Davies Hall (San Francisco), Disney Hall (Los Angeles), the Kimmel Center (Philadelphia), the Wanamaker Organ (Philadelphia), Yale University, and the Eastman School of Music. Highlights of her 2013-2014 season include the rededication of the Royal Festival Hall organ (London, UK), concerts at Longwood Gardens (PA), Rockefeller Chapel-University of Chicago (IL), Cincinnati Museum of Art (OH), Cathedral of the Madeleine (UT), Palais Montcalm (Quebec City), as well as tours in Australia/New Zealand and Germany next summer.
Her debut recording on British label Acis was met with critical acclaim. On a recent broadcast of Pipedreams,presenter Michael Barone featured the Fugue from Reger’sOp. 73, describing it as “a masterful score, here masterfully played,” and Isabelle Demers as, “definitely a talent to watch, to hear” The RSCM’s Church Music Quarterly awarded the “exciting, expressive and successful” recording its highest recommendation for its “profound and searching” performances. Fanfare Magazineproclaimed the “superbly produced” and “clear, tightly focused recording” with its “brilliantly played program.” Her second disc, featuring the organ works of Rachel Laurin, was released in June 2011, and her recording of Max Reger’s Seven Chorale-Fantasias in November 2012. Her most recent CD, Bach, Bull, and Bombardes (Pro Organo), was released in May 2013, and includes works of Bach, Bull, Reger, Widor, Tremblay, Mendelssohn, Daveluy, and Thalben-Ball.
Single tickets are available at the door:
Regular Admission $20
Youth 18 & under—FREE!
Students with current student ID—FREE
This concert is in collaboration with First Presbyterian’s Arts for the Soul series.
Isabelle Demers will conduct a church music workshop Saturday, November 1 at 10:00 a.m. at Grace Lutheran Church.