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 "...A powerful rendering of Les Corps Glorieux... she played with an agility that met the musics coloristic and rhythmic demands."

- The New York Times


Gail Archer is an international concert organist, recording artist, choral conductor and lecturer who draws attention to composer anniversaries or musical themes with her annual recital series in New York City including her 2021 series, A Slavic Celebration, and Max Reger, The Muse's Voice, An American Idyll, Liszt, Bach, Mendelssohn and Messiaen. Ms. Archer was the first American woman to play the complete works of Olivier Messiaen for the centennial of the composer's birth in 2008; Time Out New York recognized the Messiaen cycle as "Best of 2008" in classical music and opera. Her recordings include her new May 2022 release, Cantius, recorded on the Casavant organ at St. John Cantius R. C. Church, Chicago, IL featuring contemporary Polish composers. Previous CD releases include Chernivtsi, recorded at the Armenian Catholic Church, Chernivtsi, Ukraine, A Russian Journey, The Muse's Voice, Franz Liszt: A Hungarian Rhapsody, Bach: The Transcendent Genius, An American Idyll, A Mystic In the Making (Meyer Media), and The Orpheus of Amsterdam: Sweelinck and his Pupils (CALA Records). Ms. Archer’s 2022 European tour took her to Switzerland, Germany, Poland and Lithuania. Highlights include the Zuger Orgeltage, Lucerne, Switzerland, St. George Lutheran Church, Glauchau, Germany with its fine Silbermann organ (1730), St. Paul Lutheran Church, Darmstadt, Germany, and the St. Christopher Music Festival, Vilnius, Lithuania.

Ms. Archer's recordings span the seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries, a festive discography that highlights her musical mastery on grand Romantic instruments as well as Baroque tracker organs. Her most recent CD, Cantius (May 2022) includes music by Sursynski, Rychling, Borowski, Lukas-zewski, Gorecki, Nowowieski, Bacewicz and Paciorkiewicz. This recording was made possible by a generous grant from the Harriman Institute, Columbia University. Chernivtsi, recorded on a Riegger-Kloss organ at the Armenian Catholic Church, Chernivtsi, Ukraine, features contemporary Ukrainian composers including, Bohdan Kotyuk, Tadeusz Machl, Mykola Kolessa, Svitlana Ostrova, Victor Goncharenko, and Iwan Kryschanowski. This recording was made possible by generous grants from Barnard College, Columbia University and the Harriman Institute, Columbia University. Her 2017 CD, A Russian Journey, includes Russian organ literature from the 19th-21st century by Glasunow, Cui, Ljapunow, Slonimski, Shaversashvili and Mussorgsky. The Muse's Voice (MM14027) features music by women composers, Jennifer Higdon, Judith Bingham, Nadia Boulanger and Jeanne Demessieux. During the 2012-2013 season, Ms. Archer released her recording of masterworks and transcriptions by the great Romantic keyboard artist and composer, Franz Liszt, Franz Liszt, A Hungarian Rhapsody. Bach, the Transcendent Genius, celebrates the brilliant improvisations on Lutheran hymn tunes of the "Great 18" chorale preludes (MM1013). The release on Meyer-Media, is the first recording on the Paul Fritts tracker organ at Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York. An American Idyll, released by Meyer Media in August, 2008 (MM08011), and recorded on the E. M. Skinner/Randall Dyer organ at Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida, features American organ music from 1900 to the present, including music by Joan Tower and a work commissioned by Ms. Archer, Praeludium super Pange Lingua by David Noon. Her centennial concerts in honor of Olivier Messiaen also produced A Mystic In the Making (MM07007), recorded on the Aeolian-Skinner organ at Columbia University, which includes two complete cycles, L'Ascension, and Les Corps Glorieux. Her solo debut CD The Orpheus of Amsterdam: Sweelinck and his Pupils (CACD 88043), recorded on the Fisk organ at Wellesley College, was released in 2006 by London's CALA Records.

Ms. Archer is the founder of Musforum, an international network for women organists to promote and affirm their work. She serves as college organist at Vassar College, director of the music program at Barnard College, Columbia University, where she conducts the Barnard-Columbia Chorus and Chamber Singers and she is a faculty member of Harriman Institute, Columbia University. She is artistic director of the artist and young artist recital series at historic Central Synagogue, New York City.

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Photo credit: Stephanie Berger Photo credit: Stephanie Berger

Photo credit: c/o Gail Archer

Photo credit: Buck Ennis

Photo credit: Steve J. Sherman