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McCracken County Public Schools News Article

MCHS Student Awarded Organ Scholarship Two Years in a Row


Owen Cody has been awarded the prestigious Scholarship Award for the second time for organ study.  To achieve this $750 Scholarship from the Southern Illinois Chapter of the American Guild of Organists (AGO), Owen had to play two contrasting pieces of music, write an essay explaining why he should be chosen for the award, and submit letters of recommendation.  In addition to these requirements, Owen listed his previous accomplishments which include awards for numerous piano and saxophone competitions. 

Owen began piano lessons at the age of 5 and now studies with Dr. Meeyoun Park at Murray State University.  She wrote of Owen, “He is a natural and instinctive musician.”  Owen is also gifted in performance as evidenced in his virtual presentation to the Southern Illinois Chapter of the AGO last fall and in his performance submissions for the scholarship.  He exhibits poise and skill beyond his 14 years.  Owen studies organ with Dr. James Reifinger from Southern Illinois University.

In his letter to the Scholarship Committee, Owen wrote, “This generous scholarship would enable me to continue my organ studies, in pursuit of refining my pedal technique and furthering my knowledge of organ repertoire and history.”  Owen also has a dream of performing on various organs across the United States.  This second year scholarship award will help to realize his dreams.

Owen was chosen from applicants that live in the three-state area of western Kentucky, southern Illinois and southeastern Missouri.  This is the service area for the Southern Illinois Chapter of the American Guild of Organists.   

The mission of the Southern Illinois Chapter of the AGO is to provide interest in future organists, to promote the hearing and playing of organ music and to continually build a community of people interested in organ playing and choral conducting.  

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