Kola Owolabi


  • Playing The Organ Works of Georg Muffat
    911 Stewart St
    July 6 @ 11:00 am
    Georg Muffat (1653-1704) studied in Paris, where he learned the orchestral tradition of Jean-Baptiste Lully, and in Rome where he met Arcangelo Corelli.  Muffat served as organist to the Strasbourg cathedral chapter and the archbishop’s court in Salzburg, and ended his career as kapellmeister in Passau.  His Apparatus musico-organisticus (1690) contains twelve toccatas, of which the first eight are ordered according to the church modes, and the remaining four feature “modern” keys such as Bb Major and E minor.  The collection concludes with a ciacona, a passacaglia and a variation set, Nova Cyclopeias Harmonica.  Muffat’s toccatas are noteworthy for their perfect integration of French and Italian musical styles, and his ability to create a unique affekt for each key.  This workshop will explore aspects of musical style and performance practice in South German baroque repertoire.  We will discuss the challenges faced by performers, including considerations of where the stylus phantasticus, French inégalite, or 17th century Italian vocal mannerisms might be employed.  

Kola Owolabi

Kola Owolabi is Professor of Organ at the University of Notre Dame. There he teaches the graduate organ performance majors in the sacred music program, as well as courses in hymn playing and improvisation. He previously held faculty appointments at the University of Michigan and at Syracuse University. Dr. Owolabi has performed at national conventions of the American Guild of Organists, The Organ Historical Society, and the Hymn Society. Notable venues include St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue in New York, St. James Episcopal Church in Los Angeles, St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Toronto, Cornell University, Yale University, Klosterneuburg Abbey in Austria and Église du Bouclier in Strasbourg, France. He has performed numerous concerts as organist and harpsichordist with the Grammy-nominated vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire and Firebird Chamber Orchestra, based in Miami, FL. He has released two solo CD recordings on the Raven label: “Sacred Expressions: Twentieth-Century Music for Organ” featuring works by Olivier Messiaen, Petr Eben and Calvin Hampton performed on the historic Holtkamp organ at Syracuse University; and Jacques Boyvin: Four Suites from the Second Livre d’Orgue (1700), performed on the 1732 Andreas Silbermann organ in Saint-Maurice Abbey, Ebersmunster, France. Dr. Owolabi is a published composer and has received commissions from the Royal Canadian College of Organists and the Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto. His choral works have been performed internationally by ensembles such as the Santa Cruz Chorale, CA, Nashville Chamber Singers, Illinois Wesleyan University Choir and the Elmer Isler Singers in Toronto.