Deck the Hall is a compilation of some of Historic Organ Restoration Committee's guest organists at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall presenting a multitude of holiday classics on both the world’s largest pipe organ - the massive 33,112 pipe Midmer-Losh Opus 5550 - and the beautiful W. W. Kimball Opus 7073 in the Adrian Phillips Theater.
Scott J. Breiner has served as an organist and choir director since he was fourteen years old. Moving to New York City at age twenty-one, he joined Holy Trinity Lutheran Church and became involved with its music program. As a professional chorister, he sang with the New York Choral Artists and performed major works in concert with the New York Philharmonic, at Carnegie Hall, and “Live from Lincoln Center.”
As an accompanist, Scott has worked with students at Rutgers University/Newark campus and with various choruses including the New York Choral Artists. He studied organ with McNeil Robinson at Mannes College of Music in Manhattan, where he also taught keyboard harmony. Scott serves as musical director and accompanist for local choruses and musical theater. He has been guest conductor and organist with the Ocean City Pops Orchestra.
Scott is director of music and organist at Grace Lutheran Church in Somers Point. He is especially proud to be the musical director of the 50 plus mixed voice Cape Shore Chorale, which was founded in July 2004. He is Dean of the Southeast Jersey chapter of the American Guild of Organists and regularly serves as assistant organist at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.
Jonathan M. Bowen has been an Organist and Choirmaster since September 1991. He pursued a B.M. degree in church music at Westminster Choir College, studying organ with Robert Carwithen and choral conducting with Melanie Jacobson.
Mr. Bowen has been a substitute organist with the Philadelphia Orchestra in the past and traveled with them on their U.S. tour in the Autumn of 2001. Jonathan was Organist and Choirmaster at Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel from 2004-2011.
Jonathan has been a guest organist at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall since 2014.
Marc F. Cheban has served as Director of Music for St. Thomas's Episcopal Parish in Newark, DE since 2004. Before that he was Organist/Choirmaster of St. Andrew’s School in Middletown, Delaware for 30 years. Among his many duties, he formed and directed a select ensemble of about 16-18 singers chosen by audition. The Concert Choir made numerous concert tours of Western Europe, appeared several times at the White House, and issued many recordings.
While in college Marc, was an active "Theatre Organist," playing every Friday evening at the historic Lansdowne Theatre, just outside Philadelphia. He has performed many times on the well-known John Dickinson Theatre Organ in Wilmington.
He is known for his accompaniments to major silent films, having played for numerous films over the years all over the Delaware Valley.
Marc has appeared countless times as a recitalist. His programs are marked by a delightful combination of serious organ works, orchestral transcriptions, and colorful novelty works. Since 1981 he has been a regular recitalist (especially during the Christmas season) on the renowned Ballroom Organ at Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, PA and has been fortunate to play informally many of the great cathedral organs of England and France.
A prolific choral composer, Marc also writes and arranges extensively for the organ. Three of his works are published by Warner, Inc. BM West Chester (PA) University; MM Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester; Westminster Choir College; University of Kent, England; General Theological Seminary, New York City.
Peter Richard Conte is an organist whose nearly-unparalleled technical facility, brilliant ear for lush tonal color, and innovative programming style have made him one of the most sought-after “orchestral” organists of this era. In 1989, he was appointed Wanamaker Grand Court Organist at what is now the Macy’s Department Store in downtown Philadelphia -- the fourth person to hold that title since the organ first played in 1911. He performs a majority of twice daily recitals, six days each week, on the largest (29,000 pipes) fully-functioning musical instrument in the world. Mr. Conte is also Principal Organist of Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, PA and Organist/Choirmaster of St. Clement’s Church, Philadelphia, where he directs a music program firmly rooted in the Anglo-Catholic tradition. He is also a frequent collaborator and soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Mr. Conte is highly regarded as a skillful performer and arranger of organ transcriptions. He has been regularly featured on National Public Radio, ABC television's “Good Morning America”, and “World News Tonight.” For 13 years he was heard on “The Wanamaker Organ Hour” radio show, broadcast via the internet at WRTI.ORG. He has been a featured artist at several American Guild of Organists’ national and regional conventions and has performed as soloist with many other orchestras around the country.
Peter Richard Conte has served as Adjunct Assistant Professor of Organ at Westminster Choir College, Princeton, NJ, where he taught Organ Improvisation. He is the 2008 recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Indiana University School of Music, Bloomington. In 2013, the Philadelphia Music Alliance honored him with a bronze plaque on the Avenue of the Arts’ Walk of Fame. His numerous recordings appear on the Gothic, JAV, Pro Organo, Dorian, Raven, and DTR labels. His most recent CD, Virgil Fox Remembered, was released in May 2016 on the Raven label.
Peter Richard Conte is represented exclusively in North America by Phillip Truckenbrod Concert Artists, LLC.
Phillip Lamb serves as Director of Music and Organist at Saint George’s Episcopal Church in Flushing, New York, as well as Assistant Organist at Saint Mary’s Abbey (O.S.B) in Morristown, New Jersey.
He holds degrees in organ performance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and Manhattan School of Music. His major teachers have been Lee Harris, Jack Mitchener, Erica Johnson, Timothy Olsen, McNeil Robinson, and Renée Anne Louprette. Phillip has performed in venues such as New York’s Riverside Church, the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin, Brick Presbyterian Church, Grace Church (Episcopal), and the National City Christian Church in Washington, DC. Phillip has been performing at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall since 2018.
Monte Maxwell has been Chapel Organist, Director of Chapel Music and the Midshipmen Symphony Orchestra at the United States Naval Academy since 1997.
Mr. Maxwell, a native of San Angelo, Texas, earned his Bachelor of Music degree from Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, studying with Emmet G. Smith. He was then invited to study at the Curtis Institute of Music with John Weaver where he received an Artist Diploma, Curtis' highest degree. Mr. Maxwell earned his Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School of Music in New York City, also studying with John Weaver. While studying in Philadelphia, Mr. Maxwell was an Associate Organist at the John Wanamaker Store, playing the famed six-manual organ, the largest fully-functioning organ in the world.
At the Naval Academy, Mr. Maxwell serves as the principal organist for the Protestant and Catholic services as well as playing for weddings, memorial services, funerals, and performances throughout the year. He commands the five-manual, 268-rank organ in the main chapel, which has recently undergone substantial enhancement under his direction and design. His additional responsibilities include working with the Protestant and Catholic Chapel Choirs, the Protestant Chapel Chorale, the Men's and Women's Glee Clubs, and conducting the annual winter musical theater productions as well as the Naval Academy Midshipmen Symphony Orchestra. He oversees the annual Chapel Organ Concert Series which features guest performing artists from across the United States. He has also served as the Chairman of the Naval Academy Music Department and Director of Instrumental Activities.
Mr. Maxwell's annual All Saints' Day Organ Concert has become a staple of the Naval Academy and greater Annapolis cultural community. The standing-room-only event drew some 3,000 people into the Naval Academy Chapel in 1998, breaking all records in attendance for any event throughout the Chapel's history. Due to the popularity of this event, the Academy now offers two ticketed performances of this concert each year. He has performed in the United States, South America, Eastern and Western Europe, and Canada and is an active member of the American Guild of Organists. In his free time, Mr. Maxwell is an avid roller coaster enthusiast and a member of the American Coaster Enthusiasts.
Brett Miller was the youngest of the three finalists in the American Theatre Organ Society’s Young Organist Competition in June of 2018. He has attended and performed organ concerts and silent films for the past five years around the Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York area as well as Chicago and Boston. He recently played for the 35 mm Film Fest Awards Program honoring the Library of Congress and their work. Along with his brother, he founded “musicalpromise.org” a musical initiative to help fund the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
Brett and his brother received the White House Student Film Festival honorable mention for a film featuring their community service work. Brett was also the recipient of the Kohl’s Care, Prudential Spirit of Community Awards as well as the Music and Spirit award for his high school and marching band. He is a member of the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra Organization where he received an award in May of 2019 for his performance of the “Leroy Anderson piano concerto”. He also performed in his high school band and jazz ensemble where he was recognized at the Cavalcade Champions as a superior soloist. He has been featured as a pianist at the Pennsylvania District Orchestra and in October 2018 at the New York All State Band and Orchestra ensemble.
Aside from music, he enjoys travelling, biking, skiing and spending time with family and friends. He studies with Jelani Eddington and has played as a featured organist at his church in Bucks County Pennsylvania, Rahway, The Colonial, Union County Performing Arts, Lowe’s Jersey Theater in Jersey City, the Brooks Performing Arts Center and the Trenton War Memorial. In the Fall of 2018 he opened for the sold-out appearance of George R.R. Martin, author of the “Game of Thrones” and on New Year’s Eve was featured on the Möller with the Capital Philharmonic at the Trenton War Memorial. He is currently studying at the Eastman School of Music to pursue a BM in Music Education and is thrilled to be performing at Boardwalk Hall!
The meticulous technique, innate yet highly mature musicality, and constant musical engagement exhibited by Joshua Stafford unanimously and quickly compelled the jury of the 2016 Longwood Gardens International Organ Competition to name him the Pierre S. du Pont First Prize Winner of this illustrious event.
Already in demand as a recitalist, improviser, and choral accompanist, Joshua has performed at many notable venues, including the Wanamaker Organ in Philadelphia, the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C., Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, and Spivey Hall in Georgia. His recital at the 2015 Conference of the Association of Anglican Musicians was hailed as “technically flawless yet exceptionally nuanced and spontaneous.” His performances have been aired on MPR’s Pipedreams and WRTI’s Wanamaker Organ Hour. In June 2018, Joshua gave the premier performance at The Kimmel Center in Philadelphia of a transcription for organ of Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite which accompanied the animated film “Who Stole the Mona Lisa” produced and directed by Micah Chambers-Goldberg. Highlights of his 2018-19 season included performances at the Basilica of Notre Dame in Montréal and at the Christopher Cohen Center at California Polytechnic University.
A native of Jamestown, New York, Joshua Stafford received the Bachelor of Music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in 2010 and his Master of Music degree from the Yale School of Music. He is the Director of Music at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, New Jersey.
Joshua Stafford is represented in North America exclusively by Phillip Truckenbrod Concert Artists, LLC.