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Alfred Fedak
1953 -
United States of America, NJ
A. Fedak
Alfred Fedak (04/07/1953), an American composer. He was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey, is a graduate of the Pingry School. He earned baccalaureate degrees in Organ Performance and Music History with high honors from Hope College, and holds a master’s degree in Organ Performance from Montclair State University. He has done additional study at Westminster Choir College, at the Cambridge Choral Studies Seminar in Cambridge, England, and at the Institute for European Studies in Vienna, Austria. His principal organ teachers were Prudence Curtis, Roger Davis, Roger Rietberg, and Jon Gillock.
Mr. Fedak has held church and synagogue positions in New York, New Jersey, and Michigan, and currently serves as Minister of Music and Arts at Westminster Presbyterian Church on Capitol Hill in Albany, New York, where he directs the fine adult choir, plays the church’s historic four-manual 1929 E. M. Skinner pipe organ (restored and reinstalled by Austin Organs, Inc. in 2003), and oversees the church’s Ministry of Music and Arts, assisted by his wife, Susan, who directs the church’s youth and handbell choirs.
A Fellow of the American Guild of Organists, Mr. Fedak also holds the AGO’s Choirmaster Certificate, and serves on the Guild’s Board of Examiners. During the years 1995-2000 he was Director of the AGO’s national Professional Certification Committee, and is presently serving as Dean of the AGO’s Eastern New York Chapter. He has performed and led workshops for many local AGO chapters, and at regional and national conventions of the Guild and at National Conferences of the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, of which he is a Life Member. He has written articles and reviews for The American Organist, The Hymn, Reformed Worship, and Music and Worship, and has served on the Reformed Church in America’s Hymnal Supplement Committee.
Mr. Fedak has won many awards in organ performance and composition, including the AGO’s prestigious S. Lewis Elmer Award for national high score on Guild certification examinations. (His score of 95% on the AGO’s Fellowship paperwork remains the highest grade ever recorded on that seven-hour exam in the 108-year history of the Guild.) He won top honors in MTNA state and regional organ playing competitions, was a finalist in MTNA’s national auditions, and a winner in the Kalamazoo Bach Festival Competition. His compositions have earned prizes from the American Guild of Organists, the Hymn Society, St. John’s University (Collegeville, MN), the John Ness Beck Foundation, ASCAP, the Diocese of Lansing, and many others. In 1995 he was named a Visiting Fellow in Church Music by the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, Texas, and in 1999 was the recipient of an Individual Artist Grant in composition from the New York State Council on the Arts.
A prolific composer of church music, Mr. Fedak has published nearly 100 individual compositions, mostly sacred works for organ and for voices, which appear in the catalogs of a dozen different publishers. In addition, he has composed nearly 100 hymn tunes, which appear in many hymnals and collections throughout the US, Canada, England, Scotland, New Zealand, Japan, and Hong Kong. Two anthologies of his hymn tunes have been published by Selah Publishing Company of Pittsburgh: The Alfred V. Fedak Hymnary (1990), and Sing to the Lord No Threadbare Song (2002). In recent years, nearly all of Mr. Fedak’s composition work has been done on a commission basis; he has received numerous commissions from colleges, seminaries, cathedrals, churches, community choruses, chamber ensembles, AGO chapters, individual artists, and private benefactors. He welcomes new commissions at any time.
Besides his duties at Westminster Church and his freelance work as a composer, concert artist, and workshop leader, Mr. Fedak also serves as Chapel Organist at the Emma Willard School in Troy, New York, and accompanist for the Burnt Hills (NY) Oratorio Society.
For us the living
Period:21st century
Composed in:2007
Musical form:free
In memory of:William & Ethel Lamere
For us the living: Requiem for William & Ethel Lamere, world premiere April 2007, Memorial Chapel, Union College, Schenectady, NY (Burnt Hills Oratorio Society, Rand Reeves, director)
Contributor:Peter Gerdine