Welcome to the official website of the Incorporated Association of Organists

Welcome to the website of the Incorporated Association of Organists.  The IAO is a registered charity that provides information, support, education, and training for organists, choir trainers and organ enthusiasts.  With over 5,000 members worldwide and over 80 affiliated associations, we are an influential voice in the classical music world, and provide a strong network and representation for our members. Organists’ Review is the leading publication for lovers of the organ and its music, and the IAO is justifiably proud of this quarterly publication.  It is packed full of the latest news and events in the organ world, and includes topical articles, in-depth features on current themes, and new music and CD reviews. Organists’ Review is available through local associations or by direct subscription.

Each year in February or March, we promote the London Organ Day, a programme of themed events given by performers of international standing.  We place particular importance on the quality of the venues and instruments featured:  2013, Royal Festival Hall; 2014, St George’s Hanover Square; 2015, Westminster Central Hall; 2016 Southwark Cathedral; 2017, the Dutch Church; and in 2018, Notre Dame de France, Leicester Square.

We promote OrganFest, which has been held in varying locations outside London, and comprises a weekend of events.  OrganFest is organised jointly with the Royal College of Organists (RCO) and the British Institute of Organ Studies (BIOS), and in recent years has taken place in Birmingham, Edinburgh, and Hull.

The most significant event in the IAO calendar is the Music Festival, which offers a wonderful opportunity for members and guests to gather and enjoy a varied programme of concerts, lectures, masterclasses, and visits to local points of interest.  The festival aims to feature the organ, and place it within its wider classical musical context.  Recent festivals were held in Bath and Oxford and received plaudits for their musical and historical qualities, as well as their warm and friendly atmosphere.  The 2018 Festival will be held in Peterborough and Cambridge, and will include a new competition promoted jointly by the RCO and IAO.

If you are interested in the world of the organ, whether as a performer or listener, amateur or professional, please browse our website, and do get in touch if you would like to join us in exploring ‘The King of Instruments’.  In particular, we should be delighted to welcome you to the Music Festival, where you can enjoy the company of like-minded people, make new friends, and experience world-class musicians performing great music in wonderful venues.

You can find out more about the activities and performances in your local area through our affiliated local associations. I encourage you to go along and see what they do.

Steven Grahl, IAO President