By Convention Coordinator, Rhonda Furr
As Convention Coordinator for the 2016 AGO National Convention, I am thrilled to see our Houston convention take shape! An AGO Convention has many dimensions and provides an opportunity to experience world-class performances and hear new organ compositions. It also brings us enlightening workshops and inspirational worship services. It is a time for renewed and new friendships.
Yet there is another element about AGO conventions that maybe recognized only by those who have been involved in past or future convention planning: the gift of time. Unlike many professional conventions that have a designated staff to plan, coordinate and execute each detail of national conventions, the AGO conventions are designed by volunteers who usually are seated at an organ bench rather than learning how to build a registration platform, create precise language of convention contracts, or map out spaces of a convention hall. While we have a National Headquarters office that provides guidance, the detailed planning of each AGO convention is dependent on the volunteers that make up the Executive Team, Steering Committee, and the100 individual committee members. Most of these folks have full-time jobs. A number of them have a full-time job and a part-time organist position. Some have performing careers in addition to full-time positions.
Most of you reading this post offer the gift of time at your churches/synagogues, your children’s schools, in civic organizations, and/or in your neighborhood communities. You understand the commitment and hours involved in such a gift. Those of us planning your 2016 National Convention (beginning in 2010) are pleased to offer our time to bring together friends of the organ and organ music. We are eager to showcase the exquisite instruments in Houston and are excited about the events planned for June 19-23, 2016. As we work toward creating memorable events for you, with opportunities to demonstrate to our community and beyond that the organ is relevant in today’s society, we are mindful of the significance of this gift. Remember that a gift given must be received! We hope you will join us to experience the results!