Baylor Student Wins National Organ CompetitionApril 14, 1997
WACO, Texas -- Baylor University senior Eric Mellenbruch has placed first in the Collegiate Artist Organ Competition of the Music Teachers National Association. Mellenbruch is a student of Joyce Jones, the Joyce Oliver Bowden Professor of Music and Organist-in-Residence.
The MTNA competition took place in Dallas as part of the organization's annual national convention, which ran from April 6-10. Preliminary rounds--at the state and regional levels--were followed by the finals on Tuesday, April 8, on the organ of the Highland Park Presbyterian Church.
Each competitor was required to perform four pieces--one written prior to 1700, one by Johann Sebastian Bach, one from the Romantic period, and one from the modern era (after 1960). For his performances, Eric Mellenbruch chose the "Toccata No. 10 in D Major" by Georg Muffat, the "Toccata and Fugue in F Major" by Bach, the "Chorale No. 1 in E Major" by César Franck, and the "Fantasia on 'Salve Regina'" by Anton Heiller.
A first-place finish in the MTNA national organ competition carries with it a cash award of $2,000. It also earned Mellenbruch the honor of presenting a special recital on the morning of April 9, also at the Highland Park Presbyterian Church in Dallas.
Mellenbruch will graduate in May with a degree in church music. A native of Corpus Christi, he plans to enter graduate school at Baylor, where he will study with Dr. Jones toward a master of music degree in organ performance.