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Episode No 56 Saturday, February 16, 2019 Rev. Benjamin Straley, Episcopal Priest, Organist, Composer, extraordinary Improviser at the Organ, Cathedral Musician.


Today’s episode is with one of America’s finest organists and musicians. Benjamin Straley was Organist and Associate Director of Music at Washington National Cathedral following his appointment as Assistant Organist in 2012. Prior to this appointment, he was Organ Scholar at Trinity Church (Episcopal), New Haven as well as Director of Music for the Episcopal Church at Yale.

Upon the completion of his undergraduate studies with Marilyn Keiser at Indiana University, he entered the Yale Institute of Sacred Music in 2008, where he studied with Martin Jean and Jeffrey Brillhart. In 2010, he became one of the few Americans in the history of the Haarlem Organ Festival to compete in its world-renowned improvisation contest. He was featured in the May 2015 issue of The Diapason as one of the “Top 20 under 30” young organists in the country. He holds both Masters in Music and Divinity from Yale, as well as a Certificate in Anglican Studies from Berkeley Divinity School.

The Rev. Benjamin Straley was ordained to the Priesthood in the Diocese of Connecticut and has recently left Washington National Cathedral to become the Assistant Rector of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Essex, CT. You will hear first-hand what it was like being the organist in the Nation’s Cathedral and his transition from Musician to Priest. His is a wonderful and fascinating story. Benjamin is a true talent, a spectacular Musician, an amazing person and is going to be a marvelous priest of the church. We were thrilled to have him on the campus and on our program.

MUSIC: We Know That Christ is Raised and Dies No More Washington National Cathedral, Benjamin Straley, Organist
MUSIC: Christmas Day 2016 Improvisation, Washington National Cathedral, Benjamin Straley, Organist
MUSIC: Presidential Inaugural Prayer Service, January 21, 2017 Improvisation, Washington National Cathedral, Benjamin Straley, Organist
MUSIC: Psalm 31 for Good Friday. Benjamin Straley, composer and conductor. Washington National Cathedral Choir.
MUSIC: Requiem “Libera Me” Maurice Duruflé Washington National Cathedral, Benjamin Straley, Organist
MUSIC: My Country Tis of Thee Washington National Cathedral, Benjamin Straley, Organist