08.25.11_John Cannon_Organ Alumni Concert Series- John Cannon ’01,’03Image of

Alumni Concert Series- John Cannon ’01,’03

As the fall semester begins, so does our Alumni Concert Series at Colorado State University. The series is an opportunity for our alumni to engage with the department, current students, former colleagues and professors. Our second Alumni Concert will feature John Cannon ′01, ′03, organist and Director of Music at Saint Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Estes Park, Colo.

John was introduced to CSU’s Casavant Frères organ, and former organ professor and Music, Theatre and Dance chair Robert Cavarra, when he was nine years old.

“The organist at a church in Estes Park suggested that I visit the Casavant organ at CSU. I was so young at the time that I couldn’t even reach the pedal board. After that, I fell in love with the organ and Fort Collins,” says John.

As a senior in high school, John chose to perform a hymn he had written for his senior project at the First Methodist church in Fort Collins; an experience that wouldn’t have been possible without the church’s organist at the time, Robert Cavarra. With his love of the city of Fort Collins and the exceptional Casavant mechanical action organ housed at the university, CSU was John’s first choice to study organ performance; and now, it is the Casavant organ that is bringing John back to the university.

“The Casavant is the most difficult organ I have ever had to play because it is so articulate and clear, but it’s one of the things that make it so special,” says John.

John’s performance is a collection of pieces that have a connection to his time as a student at CSU. Among works by J.S. Bach and Girolamo Frescobaldi, John will perform a piece by Swiss organist Lionel Rogg, who was present at the dedication of the Casavant organ in the 1960s, and a chorale prelude that John chose for his senior recital in 2001. He will also perform one of Mr. Cavarra’s favorite pieces, Toccata Prima from Apparatus musico-organisticus by Georg Muffat, and he will also premiere an original composition by David Briggs, written for John and based on the hymn Lobe den Herren, o meine Seele.

Aside from performing for our patrons at the University Center for the Arts, John is also performing for current students in the music program.

“I hope that my performance is an inspiration to the students here at CSU,” says John. “I want to convey that if you pursue your dreams and continue to work hard, you will never know where you will end up as a music student.”