The exceptional talents of George Wiese, director or the Mountain Top Music School in Conway Village provided an afternoon of music created specifically for the reed organ.
Our Afternoon Musicale appealed to folks of all musical tastes. The reed organ’s incredible versatility made it the prominent musical instrument of rural American homes and meetinghouses between the years of 1880 and 1940. Unlike its European cousin, the harmonium, the American reed organ is not confined to classical music. As New England’s villagers gathered for town meetings, community suppers, church services, or just for the heck of it, a reed organs were often on hand to accompany communal singing. An entire genre of “American Revival Hymns” owes its existence to the reed organ’s stylistic versatility. It is for these reasons that our Musicale program includes a little of everything: classical music, popular songs of yesteryear, some hymns, and a good old-fashioned community sing-a-long. Some very special – and “surprise” – musical guests will be in attendance to assist Maestro Wiese in creating a mesmerizing musical montage sure to delight all who attend.
About the Performer:
George Wiese has been the Executive Director of Mountain Top Music Center in Conway Village since 2011. A noted performer an educator, George is a graduate of the Juilliard School (New York) and the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore.) Active as a conductor, pianist, and trombonist, George has enjoyed a diverse musical career. His infatuation with reed organs began in 2005, when a dilapidated reed organ “followed him home” from an antiques barn in Solon, Maine. Over the past 10 years, George has accumulated seven reed organs (currently all in various states of spare-time-project restoration.) Upon becoming a full time Mainer in 2009, George restored the 1905 Williams Reed organ at the North Pownal United Methodist Church, where he serves as organist. After enduring nearly 50 years neglect in a back room, the almost forgotten organ was re-installed on Easter Sunday, 2010, and once again accompanies Sunday services – much to the delight of the congregation. George is a member of the International Reed Organ Society, and enjoys every opportunity to play, restore, or talk about all things reed organ.