Concerts at Saint Thomas opens its 2020-21 Season with digital performances from Joy-Leilani Garbutt, Nicholas Quardokus, and pianist Adam Golka

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Concerts at Saint Thomas opens its 2020-21 Season with digital performances from Joy-Leilani Garbutt, Nicholas Quardokus, and pianist Adam Golka

Organist and Fulbright scholar Joy-Leilani Garbutt opens the season with a program of works composed by rarely-heard 20th-century French women on the Miller-Scott Organ on October 3

On October 17, Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue’s Assistant Organist, Nicholas Quardokus, will perform music from the German tradition on the Loening-Hancock and Miller-Scott organs

Pianist Adam Golka will present the first two concerts of his Complete Beethoven Sonatas on October 24 and 31 in celebration of the composer’s 250th anniversary

For immediate release — New York, NY — On October 3 at 3:00 pm, organist and Fulbright scholar Joy-Leilani Garbutt will open the season with a performance on the Miller-Scott Organ. The performance, which was rescheduled from March, will feature French organ music composed by female composers of the early 20th century including Claude Arrieu, Elsa Barraine, Nadia Boulanger, and more.

Concerts at Saint Thomas continues their season on October 17 at 3:00 pm, with Assistant Organist, Nicholas Quardokus, who will pay homage to centuries-old German chorale on both the Loening-Hancock and Miller-Scott organs. The program will explore the Baroque, late-Romantic, and Neoclassical eras of organ music with compositions by J.S. Bach, Hugo Distler, Dieterich Buxtehude, and Max Reger.

Pianist Adam Golka will close out Concert at Saint Thomas’s October concerts on October 24 and October 31 at 3:00 pm with the first two parts of an eight-part concert series that will survey Beethoven’s complete Piano Sonatas in celebration of the composer’s 250th birthday.

Listing Info

October 3, 2020 | Saturday at 3:00 PM
Les Compositrices Françaises: 20th Century French Organ Music by Female Composers

Joy-Leilani Garbut, The Miller Scott Organ

Jeanne DemessieuxTu es Petrus
Elsa Barraine Élevation
Joséphine Boulay Andante
Joséphine Boulay –Prélude et Fugue
Elsa Barraine –Prélude et Fugue
Jeanne Demessieux – Prélude et Fugue in C
Nadia Boulanger Prélude
Cécile Chaminade Prélude, op. 78
Marie-Véra MaixandeauSonate pour Orgue
Jeanne Demessieux – Te Deum, Opus 11

October 17, 2020 | Saturday at 3:00 PM
The German Chorale: Masterworks of Bach, Distler, and Reger

Nicholas Quardokus, The Loening-Hancock & Miller-Scott Organs

Johann Sebastian Bach
–Partite diverse sopra “Sei gegrüsset, Jesu gütig”, BWV 768
Hugo Distler – Partita “Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland”, Op. 8, no 1
Dieterich Buxtehude Nun freut euch, lieben Christen g’mein, BuxWV 210
Max Reger – Fantasie über den Choral “Straf mich nicht in deinem Zorn”, Op. 40, no 2

October 24, 2020 | Saturday at 3:00 PM
The Complete Beethoven Sonatas I: Early Gems and the Waldstein

Adam Golka, piano

Beethoven – Sonata No. 1 in F Minor, Op. 2, no. 1
Beethoven – Sonata No. 7, D Major, Op. 10, no. 3
Beethoven – Sonata/Sonatina No. 19 in G Minor, Op. 49, no. 1
Beethoven – Sonata No. 21 in C Major, Op. 53, “Waldstein”

October 31, 2020 | Saturday at 3:00 PM
The Complete Beethoven Sonatas II: Humor and Passion

Adam Golka, piano

– Sonata No. 10 in G Major, Op. 14, no. 2
Beethoven – Grande Sonata No. 4 in E-flat Major, Op. 7
Beethoven – Sonata/Sonatina No. 20 in G Major, Op. 49, no. 2
Beethoven – Sonata No. 23 in F Minor, Op. 57 “Appassionata”

Relevant Links


Ticket Information

All concerts take place at Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue at One West 53rd Street.

Tickets may be purchased at concerts or in person at the Concerts Office at One West 53rd Street at Fifth Avenue (enter through the Parish House).


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About Joy-Leilani Garbutt

Joy-Leilani Garbutt is the Minister of Music at Christ Lutheran Church in Washington, D.C. and the organist for the Takoma Park Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Joy-Leilani is the recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship and has recently returned from France where she pursued research on early 20th-century French organ music by female composers, particularly Joséphine Boulay, Mel Bonis, Nadia Boulanger, Lili Boulanger, and Jeanne Demessieux. She is a Ph.D. candidate in musicology, and an organ student of Dr. Jeremy Filsell. In the spring of 2018 Joy-Leilani co-founded the Boulanger Initiative, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting music composed by women through performance, education, and commissions.

She holds a Master of Education degree from The Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Master of Music in organ performance from Northwestern University, where she served as Organ Scholar for the Alice Millar Chapel Choir. In addition to solo recitals in the U.S. and France, Joy-Leilani has performed with the New England Youth Ensemble in England, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, and Mexico.

About Nicholas Quardokus

Nicholas came to Saint Thomas Church from St. Paul’s Parish K Street, Washington D.C., where was an Organ Scholar assisting in playing, conducting, and chorister training for weekly services. In addition to duties at St. Paul’s, he was a part-time organist at Washington National Cathedral. He has held similar posts at Yale Divinity School’s Marquand Chapel, Trinity Church on-the-Green, New Haven, CT, and Trinity Church, Indianapolis. He earned Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. His principal teachers included Janette Fishell and Martin Jean (organ), Elisabeth Wright and Arthur Haas (harpsichord), and Jeffrey Brillhart (improvisation).

Nicholas has garnered top prizes in competitions around the country, winning first prize at the 2014 Albert Schweitzer Organ Competition in Wethersfield, Connecticut. In 2013, he took first prize in the American Guild of Organists Regional Competition for Young Organists. As a solo recitalist, he has performed throughout the Eastern United States, including appearances at conventions of the American Guild of Organists, the Kennedy Center, and the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC. His solo performances have been broadcast on public radio’s Harmonia Early Music and Pipedreams. He was the featured organist in the 2018 German documentary The Unanswered Ives, which is to be broadcast on French and German television. He has appeared with the Cathedral Choral Society, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and the Washington Master Chorale.

About Adam Golka

Since first self-presenting and performing Beethoven’s 32 Piano Sonatas at the age of 18, Adam Golka has immersed himself in studying the master’s works. He has studied Beethoven under the guidance of masters such as Leon Fleisher, Alfred Brendel, Sir András Schiff, Murray Perahia, and Ferenc Rados. In 2011, Adam performed a cycle of all five Beethoven concerti with the Lubbock Symphony, with his brother Tomasz at the baton, and last summer, he made his San Francisco Symphony debut at the Stern Grove Festival in Beethoven’s Fourth Piano Concerto. He will celebrate Beethoven’s 250th birthday in 2020 by playing the whole cycle of Beethoven’s 32 in multiple cities. This will coincide with a self-produced video series called “32@32” and the release of his first volume of Beethoven’s Sonatas on First Hand Records.

Adam Golka was selected by Sir András Schiff to perform recitals at the Klavier-Festival Ruhr in Germany, Tonhalle Zürich, as well as in Berlin and New York (organized by the 92nd Street Y). Adam has been regularly on the concert stage since the age of sixteen, when he won first prize at the 2nd China Shanghai International Piano Competition. He has also received the Gilmore Young Artist Award and the Max I. Allen Classical Fellowship Award from the American Pianists Association.

In the 2018/2019 season Adam’s concerto engagements include the Mozart Concerto No. 24 in C Minor, K. 491 with the (NFM) Leopoldinum Chamber Orchestra in Wroclaw, Poland, Joseph Swensen conducting, and Grieg’s Concerto with Symphony in C in New Jersey. He will partner with Roman Rabinovich for series of two piano recitals in Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem, and he will perform a solo recital at the Minnesota Beethoven Festival and also at the Cleveland Chamberfest in June. The Cliburn Foundation presented Adam in a solo recital at the Kimbell Art Museum, with works by Beethoven, Paderewski, and Chopin. Also in collaboration with the Cliburn Foundation, Adam offered his special education program: “Van Cliburn: An American Hero”, an appearance at the Chopin Society of Texas, Corpus Christi, and a recital at the Chopin Foundation (USA) in Miami, FL.

Golka’s solo appearances with orchestra have included the BBC Scottish, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Indianapolis, New Jersey, Milwaukee, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, Fort Worth, Vancouver, Seattle, and Jacksonville Symphonies, Grand Teton Festival Orchestra, National Arts Centre Orchestra of Ottawa, the Sinfonia Varsovia, the Shanghai Philharmonic, the Warsaw Philharmonic, and the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra of Venezuela. He made his Carnegie Hall Isaac Stern Auditorium debut in 2010, performing Rachmaninoff’s Third Concerto with the New York Youth Symphony.

Adam’s past appearances as a chamber musician included festivals such as Marlboro, Caramoor, Ravinia, Prussia Cove, and Music@Menlo, the Frankly Music series in Milwaukee, and he is also a member of the Manhattan Chamber Players. He has been presented by the Musicians Emergency Fund in Alice Tully Hall on multiple occassions, and he has performed recitals in the Concertgebouw’s Kleine Zaal, Musashino Civic Cultural Hall in Tokyo, and at festivals such as Mostly Mozart, the Gilmore Keyboard Festival, the Ravinia Festival, the New York City International Keyboard Festival, the Newport Music Festival, the Hornby Island Festival in British Columbia, and the Duszniki Chopin festival. Adam recently performed a recital of Schubert, Liszt and Brahms at the extraordinary Tippet Rise Arts Center in Fishtail, Montana, and he is also a frequent guest at the Krzyżowa-Music Festival in Poland, where he premiered his own two-piano arrangement of Debussy’s La Mer in 2018 and also narrated his original poetry for Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals, created especially for the opening concert of the festival.

Adam has premiered solo works written for him by Richard Danielpour, Michael Brown and Jarosław Gołembiowski. His début album, featuring the first sonata of Brahms and the Hammerklavier Sonata of Beethoven, was released in 2014 by First Hand Records. In 2017, he released his Schumann album for the same label, not only playing solo works but also partnering with soprano Lauren Eberwein. This album was produced by his friends Michael Brown and Roman Rabinovich, whose First Hand albums Adam in turn produced.

Adam Golka is greatly indebted to the late José Feghali, with whom he studied throughout all his teenager years and young adulthood, as well as to his insightful studies with Leon Fleisher at the Peabody Conservatory. He is Artist-in-Residence at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, where he teaches piano, chamber music, and conducts the Holy Cross Chamber Orchestra.

About The Saint Thomas Choir & Choir School

The Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys is considered by many to be the leading ensemble in the Anglican choral tradition in the United States. The choir performs regularly with the period instrument ensemble New York Baroque Incorporated, or with Orchestra of St. Luke’s as part of its own concert series. Its primary raison d’être, however, is to provide music for five choral services each week. Live webcasts of all choral services and further information including recordings of the choir may be found at

Supplementing its choral services and concert series over the past three decades, the choir has toured throughout the U.S. and Europe with performances at Westminster Abbey and St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, King’s College, Cambridge, Windsor, Edinburgh, St. Albans, and the Aldeburgh Festival. In 2004, the choir toured Italy, and performed for a Papal Mass at the Vatican. During 2007, the choir performed Bach’s St. Matthew Passion for the opening concert of the Mexico Festival in Mexico City as well as at Saint Thomas Church. In February 2012, the Boys of the choir traveled to Dresden to give the premiere of Lera Auerbach’s Dresden Requiem with the Dresden Staatskapelle in the Frauenkirche and Semper Oper. Later in 2012, the choir was invited to perform in the Thomaskirche at the Leipzig BachFest, a highlight of their June 2012 tour to Germany and Copenhagen.

In addition to the annual performances of Handel’s Messiah, concerts at Saint Thomas have included Requiems by Fauré, Brahms, Mozart, Duruflé and Howells; Bach’s Passions and Mass in B Minor; the Monteverdi Vespers of 1610; a Henry Purcell anniversary concert; Rachmaninoff Vespers; the U.S. premiere of John Tavener’s Mass; a concert of American composers featuring works by Bernstein and Copland and a composition by Saint Thomas Choir School Alumnus, Daniel Castellanos; the world premiere of Scott Eyerly’s Spires, and a concert of music by Benjamin Britten.

The Men of the Saint Thomas Choir are professional singers; the Boy choristers attend Saint Thomas Choir School. Founded in 1919, it is the only church related boarding choir school in the U.S., and one of only a few choir schools remaining in the world. The Choir School offers a challenging pre-preparatory curriculum, interscholastic sports, and musical training for boys in grades three through eight. The Choir School is committed to training and educating talented musicians without regard to religious, economic, or social background. Choristers are sought from all regions of the country. Details of admissions procedures and audition requirements are available at

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