Christian Lane, a graduate of the Yale School of Music and Institute of Sacred Music, won the Canadian International Organ Competition (CIOC) this past weekend. The CIOC, which was held in Montreal, is the only international organ competition in the Americas in 2011.
In the finals, Lane and the other four finalists each played a 60-minute recital, the repertoire for which was left to their discretion – with the exception of the compulsory piece, Liszt's Variations on Weinen, Klagen Sorgen, Zagen.
The competitors vied for a total of $72,000 in prizes, with a First Prize of $30,000. The prizes were awarded by an international jury. Lane's prize will also include a three-year management contract with Karen McFarlane Artists, a CD recording with ATMA Classique, and career management and coaching from the CIOC.
“The Canadian International Organ Competition has been quickly propelled into the top tier of music-making and artist support in our profession. I am humbled and delighted by the opportunity to represent this organisation in the coming years," said Christian Lane.
The Canadian International Organ Competition (CIOC) promotes organ music by increasing public awareness and interest in this music. In Montreal, every three years, the CIOC presents an international competition in which a prestigious jury representing various countries awards important prizes to a selection of the best young organists in the world. Seeking to actively participate in Canada’s cultural life, the CIOC annually develops a programme of activities in collaboration with organisations of the organ world. These musical and educational activities are designed to emphasize the cultural importance of pipe organs in Canada – treasures of our heritage – for a wide and diverse audience.
Christian Lane is Assistant University Organist and Choirmaster at Harvard University. Acclaimed for his “driving energy and mature interpretation (The American Organist),” Mr. Lane earned first prize in four major American organ competitions before reaching his twenty-first birthday. In addition, he earned both second prize and the coveted audience prize at the 2004 American Guild of Organists National Young Artists Competition (NYACOP). He holds a bachelor’s degree and the Sacred Music Diploma from the Eastman School of Music and then studied with Thomas Murray as a Robert Baker Scholar at Yale, earning a master’s degree from the Yale School of Music and a certificate from the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. Passionate about commissioning new music and using the organ in collaborative settings, Mr. Lane has performed extensively throughout the United States and in Europe. Notably, he premiered two commissioned works by composer Nico Muhly, and he regularly performs joint programs with internationally acclaimed soprano Jolle Greenleaf. The current season includes a tour of the United Kingdom (including both St. Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey in London) and a week of teaching at the Oundle for Organists program. In addition, Mr. Lane has served within several prominent parish music programs, including the Episcopal Churches of Trinity-on-the-Green (New Haven) and Saint Thomas Fifth Avenue (New York City).