Sunday, January 22, 2017, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Cathedral Organist Mark Babcock will present an organ recital showcasing the variety of colors on the prestigious Cathedral Casavant organ. Music of Bach, Mendelssohn, Vierne, and Alain will be included. The program entitled, Light, will focus on the season of Epiphany and will incorporate appropriate connections for the season. Cathedral Art’s events are opportunities to invite people to this beloved place. Our organ and the Cathedral music traditions are worth sharing with the community. A reception follows the program. Invite, come, and enjoy Light.
Mark A. Babcock, Cathedral Organist, is a native of Iowa who received a Bachelor's degree in music education from Central College, Pella, Iowa. He holds a Master's degree in choral conducting and organ performance from the prestigous Westminster Choir College - Princeton, New Jersey. While in Princeton, Professor Babcock sang in the Westminster Choir which performs regularly with the New Jersey Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, and the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has worked with great musical leaders such as Joseph Flummerfelt, Joan Lippincott, Robert Shaw, and Riccardo Mutti. In addition, he has pursued doctoral studies in organ and choral conducting at the University of Iowa.
Professor Babcock has taught vocal music at Union Middle and High Schools, La Porte City, Iowa, was the Director of Music/Organist at St. Paul's United Methodist Church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, taught at Kirkwood Community College, and directed the Cedar Rapids Symphony Discovery Children’s Chorus.
Currently, Professor Babcock, Associate Professor of Music, is in his seventeenth year of teaching at Central College. He is the Chair of the Music Department and the Director of Choral Activities. As the director of the Central College A Cappella Choir, he led the choir on a prestigious tour of Italy in the spring of 2009, Washington, D.C and the National Cathedral in 2010, Brazil in 2013, and the East Coast and St. John the Divine NYC in 2014. His duties at Central include private organ instruction; courses in church music, music education, and music theory; and directing three auditioned choirs. He was awarded the M. Joan Farver Endowed Professor of Music at Central College in 2011.
Professor Babcock is active in the church music and music education fields in addition to his work at Central College. He has been the Dean of the Central Iowa Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, was the chair for the AGO Region VI Convention held in June of 2011, was elected to the AGO National Council as Councillor for Conventions in the summer of 2012, is on the Board of the Iowa Choral Director’s Association as Repertoire and Standards Chair for Music and Worship, is the ICDA 2015 Summer Symposium Chair, and is the Cathedral Organist at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Des Moines. He provides choral and organ consultation, festival leadership, and music training in a variety of settings.
As a recognized organ recitalist, he was honored by Iowa State University as the 2005 “Organist of Iowa.” His organ performances demonstrate the versatility and virtuosity that draw audiences to the “King of Instruments.” In addition, he regularly collaborates with other instrumentalists and shares his mastery of organ improvisation.