Fred's Facts ... a lot of background and details.
Fred's concise, professional bio,
is found in the column at right.
Frederick Hohman's musical life and career is multi-faceted. His 40-year career has been shaped and aided by diverse musical training, diverse religious training, and by a constant awareness of the power and effect of recorded and broadcast media.
Early Beginnings in St. Louis
Fred's primary piano and organ teacher in St. Louis from 1967 to 1974 was Charles Cordeal of Webster Groves, Missouri. Mr. Cordeal saw the opportunity to spotlight Fred, then age 12, as a model student for the then-new St. Louis Archdiocesan Organist Training Program (AOTP), a program designed by Mr. Cordeal to attract a wide pool of keyboard players at a basic level, and to advance them through a program, with the goal of placing pianists as organists in Catholic parishes. Fred progressed through the program and presented his first solo organ recital at age 14, with Mr. Cordeal at his side turning pages, in November, 1969, at St. John's United Church of Christ in St Charles, Missouri. While studying with Cordeal, from age 12 through 17, Fred served as organist in two churches in St. Charles, Missouri: Good Shepherd United Church of Christ (playing a Baldwin electronic), and Faith United Methodist Church (playing a Hammond C-3).
Fred's father, Marvin, a jazz and big-band style dance band musician, and a teacher of woodwinds and brass, schooled Fred in jazz theory, and transported him for weekly lessons with jazz pianists in St. Louis, as well as for study of the "classics" with Professor Cordeal. On Fred's 13th birthday, Marvin arranged for Fred to join the Musicians' Union (A. F. of M.) Local 2-197. Father Marv put son Fred to work on weekends, employing him as his sideman pianist (sometimes with portable electronic organs by Farfisa and Acetone (!). Gigs ranged from jazz combo to big band gigs, with wedding receptions, bar and bas mitzvahs and other private and corporate parties around greater St. Louis. It was in this environment that Fred learned the value of a musician who also serves as an entertainer.
Fred's open acceptance of a wide scope of religious belief was tempered by his having completed confirmation courses during his youth in three different Christian denominations: United Church of Christ, Missouri Synod Lutheran and Roman Catholic.
Prior to leaving St. Louis at age 18, Fred served as Associate Organist for 19 months at Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Webster Groves (1973-1974), where his mentor in Anglican church music and hymn-leadership style was the Rev. Zane Wesley Gordy, a student and disciple of renown Philadelphia organ professor Alexander McCurdy. It was during his 19-month stay at Emmanuel Episcopal Church that Fred presented 3 organ recitals (memorized) on the church's 3-manual Holtkamp organ, drawing upon organ literature ranging from the "Wedge" Prelude and Fugue of J. S. Bach to the organ works of Maurice Duruflé and Paul Hindemith. Two of these events drew critical notice in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Prior to his entry into the Eastman School, Fred also studied organ for collegiate academic credit with Kathleen Thomerson and composition with James Woodard, both of whom taught then as faculty at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville.
Eastman Years - First Venture into Radio Broadcasting
Although he could have pursued a film career in Hollywood, on the advice of his musician father, and already having a level of comfort from teenage performing experience, and with the encouragement of a full scholarship from the Eastman School of Music (University of Rochester, New York), Fred entered the Eastman School in 1974 as a sophomore level undergraduate in the organ class of David Craighead. He would remain at Eastman to earn the Performer's Certificate in Organ (1977), Mus.B., Applied Organ (1977), Master of Music in Performance and Literature (Organ), 1979, and the Doctor of Musical Arts in Performance and Literature (Organ), 1990.
Fred is distinguished as the only student to have taken all available degrees at the Eastman School while remaining in the organ studio of David Craighead. David Craighead led a remarkable life as an organ virtuoso and teacher, with more than 35 years at the Eastman School. Fred studied early Italian music with Russell Saunders one summer, while Dr. Craighead recovered from an abdominal surgery.
During his first years at Eastman, 1977-1979, Fred produced, engineered, hosted, and performed all the organ literature for a weekly 30-minute radio program, entitled Pro Organo. This series was syndicated by Hohman in the USA to 20 affiliates with National Public Radio. The Pro Organo radio series had 26 weekly episodes. One broadcaster who encouraged Hohman the most in his radio series was Michael Barone, now renown host of the Pipedreams series, but then, a staff producer at Minnesota Public Radio's FM affiliate in Collegeville / St. Cloud, Minnesota. The Pro Organo radio series pre-dated Barone's Pipedreams series by two years. The name "Pro Organo" that once applied to Hohman's radio show was adopted by Hohman as the name of his CD label in 1984. The Pro Organo radio series was produced at first using an array of 4 condenser microphones, fed to and mixed by a Revox A700 open-reel recorder, configured as a professional 2-track stereo deck, and later, with an Ampex ATR-102 recorder.
Compositions, Competitions, Writings, Essays
After having been a semi-finalist and finalist in a number of competitions, including the J. S. Bach International Organ Competition (Leipzig, 1976) and the Diane Bish International Organ Competition (Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 1982 and 1983), in 1984, Frederick Hohman won First Prize in both the Clarence Mader Organ Competition (Ruth and Clarence Mader Memorial Scholarship Fund, Pasadena, California) and the Arthur Poister national organ-playing competition (American Guild of Organists, Syracuse, New York).
Fred's original compositions and organ transcriptions are published by Wayne Leupold Editions and by Zarex Scores. Only a small portion of Fred's compositional output is published as of this date. Only one of his many choral anthems is published (Lawson & Gould). Among the most secular of items in Fred's diverse output are a series of singing "jingles," composed during a stint as a jingle writer in 1980-81. In 1984, Fred took First Prize - winning over several composition majors at Eastman - for his anthem "Jerusalem, the City," with his entry in an anthem competition, held in conjunction with the sesquicentennial celebration of the city of Rochester, New York. During his years at Eastman, Fred's composition and orchestration professor was department chariman Samuel Adler.
Fred's Eastman School doctoral essay (1988), entitled "The Art of the Symphonic Organist" and his many CD recordings of original organ music and organ transcriptions by the king of symphonic organists, Edwin Henry Lemare (1865-1934), have cast Fred as a symphonic organist; however, most people in the profession forget that Fred has always performed the gamut of organ literature.
Church Work and Recital Tours
Between the years 1974 and 1993, Frederick served the following parishes as organist and choirmaster or as director of music and organist: First Lutheran Church of Lyons, New York; First Presbyterian Church, Durham, North Carolina; Union United Methodist Church, Saint Louis, Missouri; First Presbyterian Church, South Bend, Indiana.
During his career as a recitalist, Frederick Hohman has performed hundreds of recitals in the USA, including tours of the Caribbean (1997 and 1999), Australia (2000 and 2003), the UK and Finland (1986 and 2004). He has presided as the featured recitalist at the dedication of new American organs, and has been featured as a concerto soloist with a number of American symphony orchestras. He has appeared in concert and recital before regional and national conventions of the American Guild of Organists (2008 and 2009), and before national conventions of the Organ Historical Society and American Institute of Organbuilders. He is presently active with the American Guild of Organists at the national level as its Director of the Committee on Educational Resources.
Television Broadcasting and Educational Roles
From 1996 to 2000, Hohman produced and hosted a weekly television series about the organ and organists, entitled "Midnight Pipes." This series ran for 24 half-hour episodes, and was aired in the Los Angeles market and on over 12 other affiliates with public television (PBS) in the USA. Today, segments from the Midnight Pipes series may be found posted on a "channel" at YouTube.com: midnightpipes
Although Fred has presented mastercasses for American Guild of Organists Chapters and although he served a 14-year tenure (1997 through 2011) as permanent juror and festival artist in the annual Albert Schweitzer Organ Festival and Competition USA, to date, Fred has never held a full-time academic position as an applied music teacher. Since 2008, Fred is having a peripheral effect for educating organists in his recent roles serving the American Guild of Organists, as Director of the Committee on Educational Resources, and as Director of the Committee on Continuing Professional Education.
Frederick Hohman served as the president of Zarex Corporation from 1995 through 2015. He has supervised production and post-production at its audio / video facility, opened in 2005 in South Bend, Indiana: Zarex HD.
Further information may be sought at these related websites:
Fred's full CV, suitable for publication.
Frederick Hohman is known as a concert organist, and also as a composer or organ and choral music, a creator of organ transcriptions, and a classical music audio-video producer / engineer; therefore, his contributions to the organ music field span many facets. Frederick earned the Performer's Certificate, Mus.B., M.M. and D.M.A. degrees while in the organ class of David Craighead at the University of Rochester's Eastman School of Music. In 1984, he won First Prize in two prestigious organ competitions, each named after a legendary American organ professor: Clarence Mader and Arthur Poister.
Since 1984, Frederick's concert tours have taken him throughout the USA, and to the Caribbean, Australia, the UK and Finland, where he has appeared in venues ranging from the largest and most opulent to the most humble and intimate. He has performed before regional and national conventions of the American Guild of Organists (AGO), The Organ Historical Society, and The American Institute of Organbuilders.
The audio recording label Pro Organo was founded by Frederick in 1985. In the 30 years of the label's existence, Frederick has overseen the production and release of nearly 300 titles (featuring organ and choral music) including about a dozen releases where he appears as both producer and artist. Frederick built the label's audio & video post-production facility, Zarex HD, in South Bend, Indiana in 1996. In the late 1990s, Frederick expanded upon his audio production experience by producing a television series about organs and organists, entitled "Midnight Pipes." Segments of this series are seen today on YouTube, where one segment, of his performance of the Toccata from the Fifth Organ Symphony by Charles-Marie Widor, has topped 1.1 million views. www.youtube.com/midnightpipes
Acclaimed by a critic with The Diapason magazine as "one of the symphonic organ's strongest exponents," Frederick championed the cause of the Symphonic School of Organ-Playing during the 1980s, during a time when it is was not well known or understood. His 1984 doctoral essay, "The Art of the Symphonic Organist," and his 1985 CD "Lemare Affair" ignited a revival in symphonic organ literature and performance practices. This led to his first organ transcription publications, and to the appearance of sequel "Lemare Affair" CDs as well as a popular organ CD entitled "SympHohmania."
Frederick Hohman's organ transcriptions and original organ music can be found published by Wayne Leupold Editions - www.wayneleupold.com - and by Zarex Scores. He has also penned music under the nom de plume "Carlos Xavier Santiago." Works for organ and orchestra - penned under both identities - were premiered to a warm reception with the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Joseph Schlefke, before the 2008 Twin Cities National Convention of the American Guild of Organists.
Since 2008, Fred has become active at the national level in The American Guild of Organists (AGO). He has served as the Director of the AGO's Committee on Educational Resources and presently serves as AGO's Director of the Committee on Continuing Professional Education, to which he brings both his academic and well as manufacturing and publishing experience. His volunteer efforts have helped the AGO to develop, publish and distribute to its membership timely and relevant educational resources in print, on CD, on DVD, and on-line.
Frederick has served as an adjudicator at several noted national and international organ-playing competitions, including the Arthur Poister competition (2011), Albert Schweitzer Organ Competition and Festival / USA (1997-2011 ASOF), the Fort Wayne National Organ-Playing Competition, and the Herbert Davis State Organ Prize (2000-Victoria, Australia).
When not on tour with concerts or recordings, Frederick works in his music studio, shared with spouse Elizabeth, where he practices on a D280 C. Bechstein piano, and a Hauptwerk-converted, 1927-vintage, 4-manual Austin organ console.
Frederick Hohman's independent, entrepreneurial American artist's life became a lead story in the issues of The Organ and Choir & Organ, two of the British organ trade "glossies."
His website is: www.frederickhohman.net and his CD label website is: www.proorgano.com .
Frederick Hohman (December, 2010.)