Biography in 250 words | Biografie auf Deutsch | Biographie en français
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Acclaimed as "one of the brightest younger artists in the field today" (The Diapason), Jonathan Ryan consistently elicits acclaim for his "considerable depth of musicianship, imagination, and passion" (Ibid.), "sense of architecture" (Choir & Organ), and "great sensitivity within the composer's spirit" (Frankfurter Neue Presse). His command of an exceptionally large breadth of repertoire, spanning from the Renaissance to numerous solo and collaborative premieres, coupled with "true virtuosity" (Reutlingener Generalanzeiger) enables the bold, imaginative programming and exceptional use of each organ’s unique capability for which he is noted. Especially concerned with communicating a work's essence, his ability to captivate listeners has "left the audience in a breathless awe" (Ibid.).
Mr. Ryan has the rare distinction of holding six First Prize awards at major international and national organ competitions. He most notably entered the international spotlight when awarded both First Prize and the only auxiliary prize, the LeTourneau Concerto Prize, in the 2009 Jordan II International Organ Competition.
Jonathan Ryan’s newest recording entitled Influences, recorded on the Stahlhuth/Jann organ at St. Martin’s Church, Dudelange Luxembourg, was released in December, 2015 on the independent boutique label, Acis and is available at jonathan-ryan.com. The recording features major works by Dupré and Willan, a premiere recording of Ad Wammes, and a commissioned piece by renowned English composer Philip Moore. His début solo organ recording, A Cathedral’s Voice (Raven 941), was released to immediate critical acclaim, including a five-star review in the London-based Choir & Organ. Mr. Ryan’s performances have been featured on the nationally syndicated radio programs Pipedreams and With Heart and Voice.
Solo performance engagements have taken him to numerous prominent venues, festivals, and conventions throughout the United States and Europe, including St. Paul’s Cathedral in London (UK), the Nicolaikirche in Leipzig (Germany), the Cathédrale St-André in Bordeaux (France), international organ festivals in Zürich (Switzerland), Hamburg (Germany), Lübeck (Germany), the Piccolo Spoleto Festival’s prestigious Spotlight Series (Charleston SC), the inaugural organ concert series at the Cathedral of Christ the Light in Oakland CA, two full-length recitals at the 2014 Boston National Convention of the American Guild of Organists, and full-length recitals at three National Conventions of the Organ Historical Society. Mr. Ryan's current performance projects include recitals of J.S. Bach's monumental Clavier-Übung III in a tour on historically-based organs throughout the United States.
Born into a musical family in Charlotte, NC, Ryan first started playing the organ at age eight. He holds degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music and Eastman School of Music, as well as the revered Fellow (FAGO) and Choirmaster (ChM) certifications from the American Guild of Organists.
Mr. Ryan serves as Director of Music and Organist at St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church in Dallas TX where his passions for conducting, performing and teaching combine with his love of sacred music at the nation's second largest Episcopal church. At St. Michael, he directs the adult choirs, oversees a growing chorister program, established the professional Compline Choir, and heads the Saint Michael Presents concert series. He most recently served as Associate Director of Music at one of the Episcopal Church's largest music programs at Christ Church in Greenwich CT. Among Christ Church’s nine choirs, he directed the adult choir in choral Masses and concerts, and assisted with the Choir of Men & Boys and the Girls Choir.
Copyright 2019, M. Jonathan Ryan. All Rights Reserved.
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