Home » Amenia » New York Philharmonic’s Kent Tritle returns to Smithfield Church for organ concert on Sept. 9

Kent Tritle Photo submitted

New York Philharmonic’s Kent Tritle returns to Smithfield Church for organ concert on Sept. 9

AMENIA — Kent Tritle, New York Philharmonic organist and acclaimed choir master, will once again bring his lively and intimate performance style to Smithfield Church on Saturday, Sept. 9, at 3:30 p.m., after a three-year hiatus brought about by COVID-19.

A favorite of Smithfield Church concertgoers, this will be the eleventh organ recital given by Tritle on the historic tracker organ meticulously restored from its original location at the First Congregational Church in Kent, Connecticut, to the Smithfield Presbyterian Church in Amenia. Far from the massive custom pipe organs with multiple keyboards and stops that Tritle is familiar with playing, the organ virtuoso says the sweet sound of the Smithfield instrument reminds him of one of the first organs he ever played as a youngster in Iowa.

He will be performing works by Buxtehude, Hancock, Coleman and Bach on the 1893 Johnson & Son tracker organ. For a complete program listing, go to www.kenttritle.com

Kevin T. McEneaney, music director for the Smithfield Church, said that, as a high school student in Rochester, New York, Tritle worked on tuning and repairing Johnson tracker organs. The upcoming concert “will be a special opportunity for people in our area to hear a master organist play this historic instrument within the superior acoustics of the historic Greek Revival church designed by noted architect Nathaniel Lockwood.

Tritle also leads an impressive array of choral performances each season in his various capacities as director of cathedral music at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine; director of New York’s elite professional choir, Musica Sacra; and as director of the Grammy Award-nominated 150-member amateur chorus, The Oratorio Society of New York, which includes several local members, performs each season at Carnegie Hall, and will be the beneficiary of funds raised from Tritle’s performance in Smithfield.

The Rev. Douglas Grandgeorge, pastor of the Smithfield Church, commented that it is simply amazing that a small country church in a remote location in northeastern Dutchess County could be hosting annual concerts by a renowned virtuoso, the full proceeds of which will benefit a New York City performing organization.

Suggested donation is $20 at the door. A reception will follow. For more information, call 718-473-4623 or email swebb00@icloud.com. The Smithfield Church is wheelchair-accessible.

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