Jeffrey Brillhart

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Biography

Jeffrey Brillhart has performed throughout the United States, South America, South Africa, and Europe as conductor and organist and is known for his musical versatility. He was awarded first place at the American Guild of Organists National Competition in Organ Improvisation in 1994. In October 2016, he was awarded the Elaine Brown Prize for Choral Excellence by the ACDA-PA.

Mr. Brillhart is director of music and fine arts at Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church, where he oversees music, education, and arts programs that involve children, youth, and adults each week. He is also music director of Philadelphia's acclaimed Singing City Choir, one of the first integrated community choirs in the United States. At Singing City he follows a distinguished line of conductors that includes Elaine Brown and Joseph Flummerfelt. Under his direction, his choral ensembles have performed with the Kronos Quartet, the Philadelphia Orchestra, Symphony in C, the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Ignat Solzhenitsyn, Bobbie McFerrin, Dave Brubeck, Helmuth Rilling, and Rossen Milanov, and on concert tours to Cuba, Northern Ireland, Brazil the Balkans, and South Africa.

Recent engagements include the presentation of a paper titled "Olivier Messiaen and Improvisation" in Amsterdam, a solo recital on the recently renovated Longwood Gardens Aeolian organ, two improvised concerts with Parisian organist Sophie-Veronique Cauchefer-Choplin at the Eastman School of Music, two "Kimmel Center Presents" performances with Canadian Brass, a concerto performance with The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, and concerto performances with the Des Moines Symphony. Upcoming engagements include a solo improvised concert in NYC in February 2017, a Kimmel Center Presents" performance in March 2017, and two Kimmel Center conducting appearances with The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia in February 2018. In August-September 2012, he served as judge for the International Chartres Competition. His textbook, Breaking Free: Finding a Personal Language for Organ Improvisation through 20th century French Improvisation Techniques was released by Wayne Leupold Editions in November 2011 and is widely used in universities in the United States and Europe. His latest book, A World of Possibilities: Master Lessons in Improvisation, is in progress.