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KEN COWAN is one of North America’s finest concert organists. Praised for his dazzling artistry, impeccable technique and imaginative programming by audiences and critics alike, he maintains a rigorous performing schedule, which takes him to major concert venues across America, Canada and Europe.
Recent and upcoming feature performances include appearances at Grace Cathedral San Francisco, Philadelphia’s Verizon Hall, Spivey Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall, and the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Paris, France. In addition, Cowan has been a featured artist in recent years at the national conventions of the American Guild of Organists held in Los Angeles and Minneapolis, has performed at many regional conventions of the AGO, and has been featured at several conventions of the Organ Historical Society and the Royal Canadian College of Organists.
Numerous critically acclaimed compact disc recordings by Cowan are available. His most recent releases are Ken Cowan Plays Romantic Masterworks (on the Raven label), which was recorded on the 110-rank Schoenstein organ at First Plymouth Congregational Church in Lincoln, Nebraska, and The Art of the Symphonic Organist, Vol. 4 (on the JAV label), which was recorded on the Michael Quimby organ at First Baptist Church in Jackson Mississippi. In addition to his solo recordings, Cowan also joined organist Justin Bischof in the world premiere recording of American composer Aaron Miller’s Double Concerto for organ, recorded with the Zurich Symphony Orchestra on the Kleuker organ in the Tonhalle, Zurich, Switzerland (Ethereal Recordings). Many of Cowan’s recordings and live performances are regularly featured on the nationally distributed radio show, Pipedreams, from American Public Media.
A native of Thorold, Ontario, Canada, Cowan received a Master’s degree and Artist Diploma from the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, studying organ with Thomas Murray. Prior to attending Yale, he graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where he studied with John Weaver.
Cowan is Assistant Professor of Organ at Westminster Choir College of Rider University in Princeton, New Jersey, where he was recently awarded the 2008 Rider University Distinguished Teaching Award. Previous positions have included Associate Organist and Artist in Residence at Saint Bartholomew’s Church in New York City and Assistant Organist posts at St. James Episcopal Church, the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin in New York City, and Saint Clement’s Church in Philadelphia. He has also been on the roster of Associate Organists for the famous Wanamaker Grand Court organ in Philadelphia.