Kilgore’s annual Pipe Organ Festival to feature range of performances

Kilgore’s annual Pipe Organ Festival to feature range of performances
Published: Oct. 26, 2023 at 2:23 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 26, 2023 at 8:37 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

KILGORE, Texas (KLTV) - If you’ve never heard a professional organist cut loose on a church pipe organ you might want to check the East Texas Pipe Organ Festival coming up in Kilgore. And it’s been advised to attend an early recital. That way if you like what you hear you can go to another one before the fest is over.

Lorenz Maycher loves the organ. So much so he started the East Texas Pipe Organ Festival over a decade ago. But he admits it wasn’t his idea. Lorenz was very aware that a man named Roy Perry helped build several Aeolian-Skinner church organs in East Texas in the mid 20th century. Then one day he got an email from a student saying:

“I’ve always wondered if there could be a festival featuring Roy Perry’s work in East Texas because there’s so many wonderful instruments there. Have you ever thought of that? No, I hadn’t thought of it. It is a good idea though,” Maycher said.

So, he organized one. Just one. That was going to be it. But after the festival a reporter for the local paper wrote that it was:

“The first annual East Texas Pipe Organ Festival. So, he cooked my goose,” Maycher said.

So now there have been 12, even through COVID. Lorenz knows an organ recital may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but he said people should try it.

“We’ve got five different organists, artists, playing the same organ. And with an organ you’ve got all these different sounds. It’s like a palette of different colors that you can deal with,” Maycher said.

He said there are over a dozen organists coming to the festival playing pipe organs in Kilgore, Longview and Shreveport. But even if several use the same instrument it’s like:

“Having five chefs with the same ingredients in the same kitchen coming up with different recipes, they’re all going to come up with a different dish,” Maycher said.

He said the showcase organ at the First Presbyterian Church in Kilgore could sound like five different organs. Lorenz plays some pretty mean pipes himself, although he is not one of the festival organists.

But he says try it, you might like it. The recitals are free to attend.

The East Texas Pipe Organ Festival runs November 5-9 culminating in a Buster Keaton silent film with organ accompaniment.

Performance schedule:

Sunday, November 5

8:00 p.m. Opening Concert

Clara Bartz, organist

First Presbyterian Church

815 E. Main St., Kilgore, Texas

Monday, November 6

- 10:00 a.m. Organ Recital

Grant Smith, organist

St. Luke’s Methodist Church

401 E. Main St., Kilgore

- 3:00 p.m. Organ Recital

Marshall Joos

St. Luke’s Methodist Church, Kilgore

- 8:00 p.m. Organ Recital

Christopher Marks, organist

First Presbyterian Church, Kilgore

Tuesday, November 7

- 10:00 a.m. Organ Recital

Emily Amos

First United Methodist Church

400 N. Fredonia St., Longview, Texas

- 2:00 p.m. Organ Recital

Elena Baquerizo

First United Methodist Church, Longview

- 4:00 p.m. Organ Recital

George Bozeman

Trinity Episcopal Church

906 Padon St., Longview

- 8:00 p.m. Organ and Violin Recital

Ken Cowan, organ

Lisa Shihoten, violin

Chan Teague, tympani

First Presbyterian Church, Kilgore

Wednesday, November 8

- 10:00 a.m. Organ Recital

Scott Dettra

First Presbyterian Church, Kilgore

- 2:00 p.m. Organ Recital

Joby Bell, organist

St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, Kilgore

Thursday, November 9

- 10:00 a.m. Organ Recital

David Hurd

St. Mark’s Cathedral,

908 Rutherford St.

Shreveport, Louisiana

- 2:00 p.m. Organ Recital

Frederick Teardo

St. Mark’s Cathedral, Shreveport

- 4:00 p.m. Organ Recital

Richard Elliott

St. Mark’s Cathedral, Shreveport

- 8:00 p.m. Silent Movie

“The Camerman,”

Starring Buster Keaton

Clark Wilson, organist

First Presbyterian Church, Kilgore

East Texas Pipe Organ FestivalP. O. Box 2069

Kilgore, Texas 75663-2069

Tax-deductible donations may be sent to:


P. O. Box 2069

Kilgore, TX 75663