Summer Youth Adventure – 2018

Student Youth Adventure 2018

Written by Luke Staisiunas

The organs for the week provided a wide and varied selection of instruments, to give the students good playing experience on different types of instruments, and installations, that they might encounter during a concert career. The main teaching organ was the Page at Stephenson High School, a recent installation from the Atlanta chapter. The Page was built as a jazzy organ, and as such features brighter, bolder sounds than a Wurlitzer, including some color stops not often found. These include a gorgeous French Horn, and a Copper Saxophone, which unlike the Wurlitzer Brass models features longer resonators, creating a different tone color well suited for solo lines. The Clarabella flute was another sound not often found, very closely resembling the orchestral instrument in the upper octaves of the stop. Those three stops alone are worth a trip back to Atlanta, not to mention the Krumet Horn undergoing renovation, a twin to the famous set found at Mundelein Seminary. (It will be installed and playing for the 2020 Convention, put it on your calendars and book your tickets—you won’t be disappointed!) Day trips included a visit to the famous Atlanta Fox (my new favorite in-theatre organ!), with its world-famous Moller organ, with 13 ranks of strings and countless color reeds giving it a very warm orchestral tone. A very different instrument to the Page, it provided a different pallet of sounds from which to work, in a MUCH larger room. A trip to Alabama provided a chance to play Big Bertha in the Alabama theatre, another contrasting organ in a contrasting room! Lastly, we visited two residences, one outside of Birmingham with an absolutely stunning recently built Walker digital organ, replacing a small pipe organ destroyed by fire.  The other was an Allen in a private studio attached to a home outside of Atlanta.

At the end of the week, the students performed in an informal recital for the visiting parents, and members of the Atlanta ATOS chapter. This was an opportunity to show off how much progress they all made in such a short time, as well as showcasing the talents of the future performers and technicians of ATOS. All in all, the week was a worthwhile experience, and very worthy of continued support! Of all the programs that ATOS supports, this is one of the most important, as year after year, new students with an interest in the theatre pipe organ come to join, and many continue to return!


Written By:  Brett Miller

This year’s Summer Youth Adventure was held in Atlanta Georgia. All of the students had the opportunity to play the fantastic instruments around the region. These included the Atlanta Fox, Stephenson High School, the Alabama Theatre, Fred Dove’s residence 3-manual Walker and our other hosts on their Allen GW-4.  There was an equally fantastic team of instructors. This year my fellow students and I received instruction from: Jonas Nordwall, Donna Parker, Martin Ellis, Jelani Eddington, and Chris Elliot. 

The Summer Youth Adventure has always been a week to which I look forward. With GSTOS’ support throughout  the past couple of years I’ve been able to advance  my knowledge and build life-long friendships as a result of this great program. With such wonderful instructors I find myself learning so much within the five day span, each instructor and guest covering a different subject. I can’t express enough my gratitude to the GSTOS membership for their support!