Organist Rees Taylor Roberts in “Farewell” Concert tonight

Music director, organist & choirmaster Rees Roberts of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church will play a farewell concert at the church, 4106 JFK Boulevard, at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, August 4.

The performance will be followed by a festive reception in the parish hall to wish him well as he leaves Arkansas to complete his university studies at Arizona State University in Tempe under the tutelage of eminent scholar-performer Dr. Kimberly Marshall. The concert is free and open to the public.

A native of Arkansas, Rees Roberts embarked on his keyboard career at age 12 studying piano with Craig Chotard of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Little Rock, but soon became enthralled by the organ. After graduating from Little Rock Central High School, he continued his musical education at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Ohio, studying organ with Jonathan Moyer and harpsichord with Webb Wiggins. He also sang in Oberlin’s premier early music choir, Collegium Musicum, under director Steven Plank.

He has played in master classes with Wilma Jensen in Memphis, Marie-Louise Langlais in Paris, France, and Kimberly Marshall in Little Rock. During his two and a half years at St. Luke’s, he led an adult choir and oversaw a bell choir as well as an ambitious program of Sunday morning services, evensongs, hymn sings, recitals, and special programs and events.

The program for the concert will include the following works:

  • Fête, Opus 51 – Jean Langlais (1907−1991)
  • Chaconne in E Minor – Dieterich Buxtehude (1637–1707)
  • Ballo del Granduca – Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck (1562–1621)
  • Chaconne in B Flat Major – Johann Bernhard Bach  (1676–1749)
  • Toccata Septima – Georg Muffat (1653–1704)
  • Variations on “Ora Labora” – Gerre Edward Hancock  (1934–2012) 
  • Prelude & Fugue in B Minor, BWV 544 – Johann Sebastian Bach (1685  1750)
  • Sicilienne, from Pelleas et Melisande – Gabriel Fauré (1845 –1924)
  • Symphonie No. 3, Opus 28, IV. Adagio – Louis Vierne (1870-1937)
  • Fugue in E Flat Major, “St. Anne,” BWV 552 – Johann Sebastian Bach