The 2012-13 Performance Season, the Passport to Great Entertainment Series, opens on Sunday September 23rd at 3 p.m. at Fayette’s historic Opera House with guest organist Rodney Jantzi performing in the first of the Glasgow Reed Organ Series.
Jantzi, from Toronto, Canada, returns to the Opera House to perform on the newly retuned Mason & Hamlin Organ. Jantzi’s talents and versatility will be further displayed when he performs on the turn of the century Seybold Organ and 1860 vintage Alexandre Harmonium.
Rodney Jantzi first became interested in organs when he was 5 years old, after his parents purchased a small plastic chord organ. Always fascinated by it, he would pick out his favorite songs by ear. At age 15, he entered a classical organ competition hosted by Baldwin Organs and won 1st prize, and then was awarded 3rd prize at the Central Canada semi-finals.
His reed organ interests began in 1994, when he visited Zion Lutheran Church in Northern Ontario, a small rural church where his wife’s family lived for many years. The organ in that church was in rather poor condition, but it was there that he realized the potential of reed organs, and started to wonder how they would have sounded when new. When the church closed, the organ was given to Rodney.
He restored the organ over the next 5 months, and new hobby was launched. When it was almost complete, he posted a few videos on YouTube, in an attempt to show that reed organs can sound great when they are carefully restored. The YouTube channel (featuring that organ) has since become one of the most popular channels for reed organs, with over a quarter of a million video views to date and growing.
Rodney continues to play pipe organ, piano and reed organ for church and for fun. He also continues to collect and restore reed organs between woodworking and working with computers.
In addition to his appearance at the Opera House in Fayette, Rodney will also give a concert on Friday, Sept. 21st at 7p.m. in Hanover, MI at the Conklin Reed Organ Museum. (For further information: Conklinreedorgan museum.org).
Season Passes and General Admission Tickets will be available at the door or may be reserved by calling (419) 237-3111 and leaving a request for tickets.