Welcome to the official website of the Incorporated Association of Organists
Welcome to the website of the Incorporated Association of Organists (IAO). We are a registered charity set up to provide information, support, education and training to organists, choir trainers and organist enthusiasts. With over 5,000 members worldwide and 90 affiliated associations, we are an influential voice in the classical music world, representing our members on important issues and providing a strong network.
Our quarterly magazine Organists’ Review is the leading publication for lovers of the organ and its music. It is packed full of latest news and events in the organ world with topical articles, in depth features on current themes and regular new music and CD reviews. Organists’ Review is available either through local associations or by direct subscription.
In February/March each year we promote the London Organ Day, a day of related events given by nationally known performers in an interesting venue (2013, Royal festival Hall; 2014, St George’s Hanover Square, 2015, Westminster Central Hall) in 2016 the London Organ Day will be at Southwark Cathedral.
In the Autumn we promote OrganFest, which is similar to the London Organ Day, but held in varying locations outside London (Birmingham in 2015) and takes place over a whole weekend. OrganFest is organised jointly with the Royal College of Organists (RCO) and the British Institute of Organ Studies (BIOS).
Each year we organise a five day Music Festival (formerly Congress); a chance for our members to gather in one place and enjoy the beauty of organ music, usually in a place of historic interest. The Festival comprises a programme of concerts, organ demonstrations, masterclasses, lectures and out of town visits, featuring the organ and the wider world of classical music. The 2015 Festival was held in Norwich; in 2016 I am delighted to say the Festival will be held in my home town, the World Heritage City of Bath. The theme of the 2016 Festival will be the wider musical world of organ composers, with particular emphasis on the 19th century.
It will include a visit to the Roman Baths as well as trips to Salisbury & Wells Cathedrals, an orchestral concert conducted by David Hill, a Festival Choir directed by Huw Williams (Director of Music, HM Chapel Royal), organ concerts by Jeremy Filsell and others as well as choral, piano, harpsichord and song recitals
If you are interested in the world of the organ, whether as performer or audience, amateur or professional, please take a look through our website and get in touch if you would like to join us in exploring ‘The King of Instruments’. In particular, we would love to welcome you to the 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.
Peter King, President