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Upcoming Performances

July 2, 6:00 pm
Guest recitalist, Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, Cazères, France

July 18
Guest recitalist, Church of St. Jacques, Muret, France

August 20, 3:00 pm Central
Inaugural recitalist, Christ the King Lutheran Church, Enterprise, Ala.

September 10
Guest recitalist, First United Methodist Church, Charlotte, N.C.

October 1, 4:00 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, First Presbyterian Church, Gainesville, Ga.

October 15, 4:00 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, First United Methodist Church, Gastonia, N.C.

March 9, 2018, 12:15 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, National City Christian Church, Washington, D.C.

March 11, 2018
Guest recitalist, Waldensian Presbyterian Church, Valdese, N.C.

May 13, 2018, 5:00 pm Eastern
Guest recitalist, First Presbyterian Church, Wilmington, N.C.

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Thursday
Dec192013

Another nunc dimittis

I just got word that my teacher and mentor Clyde Holloway died this week. As of this writing, details are unknown, but reflection on my long relationship with him is already heavy.

I met him at my Rice audition in the spring of 1990. The music building was not yet finished, and the School of Music was still scattered all over the campus. My audition was in the chapel, and Clyde's office was in the basement of a language building of some sort. I still remember standing outside Fondren Library, where there were more music offices, when I saw him walk out with another student in conversation. That was the first time I ever saw him in person, but I was too shy to speak up, and we didn't meet until later that day at our official rendezvous time. Fast-forward to just last week, to my final conversation with him. He was at First Presbyterian in Houston, helping a former classmate of mine get ready for her recital at "my house" next March. He called me several times to ask about specifications of the organ here, and he and she were working within those parameters where they were. He and I also briefly spoke of a draft I had just sent him of an interview a couple years ago, intended for The American Organist magazine. He never had a chance to review that and get back to me, and so I'll be sending it to the magazine as a memorial tribute rather than a retirement tribute.

Virtually everything I do as a professional is informed and infused by the mentoring of both my organ teachers. Thanks to H. Max Smith, I have the job I have. And thanks to Clyde Holloway, I know how to do that job. Max's example taught me how to behave, how to be there for students, how to network, and how to be diplomatic. Clyde taught me all the rest: the teaching, the practicing, the performing. And it's all working!

The four most important father figures in my life are now gone: my father Donald Bell, my first boss Richard Woods, and my two organ teachers H. Max Smith and Clyde Holloway. There is absolutely nothing I do in my life that does not remind me of at least one of these men. I am living proof that all of them lived! To meet me is to meet them on some level, and I say that proudly.

Rest in peace Clyde Holloway, 1936-2013.

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