The American chorak conductor and organist, Claudia Dumschat, obtained her Bachelor of Musical Arts degree in Organ Performance (1981-1985); her Master of Music Arts degree in Organ Performance (1985-1987); and her Doctor of Musical Arts in Organ Performance (1990-1995), all from Manhattan School of Music in New York City. While there she was twice awarded the Claire Coci Award for Excellence in Organ Performance. Her teachers included Fred Swann, John Walker, McNeil Robinson, Alec Wyton, and Dennis Keene, with whom she studied both organ and conducting.
Claudia Dumschat has been an organist/choir director continuously since the age of 12, when she became the Music Director of her hometown church in Livingston, New Jersey. She has worked for a number of churches in Manhattan. She was Associate Organist at St. James Episcopal Church, an Organ Fellow at Christ and St. Stephens Episcopal Church, and for seven years she worked at two neighboring churches: Broadway United Church of Christ and Trinity Evangelical Lutheran, where she was Artistic Director of the One Hundredth Street Concert Association (OSCA). She was also Conductor of the Cornerstone Chorale and Associate Organist at Columbia University.
Since January 1999, Claudia Dumschat is Organist and Choirmaster at Church of the Transfiguration, a national landmark also known as “The Little Church Around The Corner,” in Manhattan. She brings over forty years of experience to her position. She administers and conducts the professional Transfiguration Choir of Men and Boys (the oldest such choir not affiliated with a school in the city), Transfiguration Girls Choir, Cherub Choir and Transfiguration Camerata. She is also the Artistic Director and Conductor of the church’s Concert Series, which has produced over fifty concerts, music dramas, and operas, as well as the Midday Music and Summer Concerts series. She is also Co-Artistic Director and Conductor of neXus Arts, which combines classical music with dance, poetry, and the visual arts.
Claudia Dumschat has performed extensively organ concerts throughout the USA and Europe. The New York Times described one of her live performances as “brilliantly assertive.” She is the recipient of many awards and has been recorded on CD and is heard frequently on the radio. Many of her performances may also be viewed on her YouTube channel. She is currently on the Board of the New York Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, a Council member of the Episcopal Actors Guild, and Chair of the Music Committee of the Greenwich Pen Women.