50 to 75 for me in Kansas City.
You get paid? Who do I see about this? (Not about you getting paid, but about me NOT getting paid).
I am paid on Saturdays and for weddings and funerals. On Sunday I have the best job ever, and volunteer. If I were to be paid @ AGO suggestions, I would earn at least $300.00 weekly (my contributions include a service and rehearsal with choir). I am working on my guild certification (the very first category of service organist).. I still have a way to go; there is a lot of repertoire to prepare... many skills to learn. A Fellow would be paid quite a bit more than that meager amount weekly and usually seek salaried positions.
To become a 'Fellow' the following is required: Most Fellows have Masters or Doctorates in organ performance. They must play the the awesome Dorian Fugue in their test.
The requirements for service organist are quite a bit less stringent.
FOR LEADERS IN THE PROFESSION, organists of superior ability and accomplishment who direct or participate in a comprehensive range of musical activity in church, synagogue, school, or public venue; who perform in solo recital and in concert; and who are called upon to demonstrate a variety of keyboard skills at a high level of competence, as well as a broad knowledge of music theory, history, and literature.
1. Perform organ literature of advanced difficulty.
2. Demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of organ repertoire.
3. Know and apply authentic performance practice.
4. Understand organ tonal design.
5. Apply authentic and effective registration.
6. Understand the mechanics and maintenance of the organ.
SECTION 1 – Tests at the Organ
F1. Candidates will select either Group I or Group II in its entirety,
and be prepared to play all or any portion of all the compositions in
that group. The candidate may play the repertoire in any order.
J.S. Bach: Fugue in D Minor (“Dorian”), BWV 538 (any edition).
César Franck: Fantaisie in A (Durand, Dover, or any edition).
Johannes Matthias Michel: Swing Five (Erhalt uns, Herr) from Organ, Timbrel,
and Dance/Three Jazz Organ Preludes (Concordia 97-6805).
Georg Muffat: Toccata III (Doblinger or any edition).
Max Reger: Toccata (#11) and Fugue (#12) from Orgelstücke, Op. 80 (any
Jehan Alain: Intermezzo (Leduc).
F2. Play a passage of organ music at sight.
F3. Play at sight a passage of music in open score on four staves
employing C clefs (soprano, alto, and tenor) and bass clef.
F4. Arrange at sight for the organ the piano accompaniment of
a vocal score (which itself may be a reduction of an original accompaniment
F5. Transpose a passage of music, not more than a major third
in either direction.
F6. Improvise a short piece (approximately two minutes in duration)
in ternary form on a given theme. The candidate will supply a recognizable
contrasting motif for the middle section. Clarity of form and structure
will be expected.
SECTION 2 – Paperwork Tests
First Session (31⁄2 hours allowed)
F7. Counterpoint: Candidates should be prepared to analyze examples,
respond to questions, and write brief examples of counterpoint in
16th-century style. Original note values will be used.
F8. Fugue: Candidates should be prepared to analyze examples,
respond to questions, and write brief examples of 18th-century fugal
F9. Essay: Write an essay on one of three given topics
concerning the life and music of Franz Liszt.
Second Session (31⁄2 hours allowed)
F10. Ear Tests:
(A) Write down from dictation a short passage in four parts, for which the key and time signature will be announced and the tonic chord played.
(B) Write down from dictation a short passage of twopart counterpoint, for which the key (but not the time signature) will be stated and the tonic chord played. Test A will be played five times, Test B four
times. One minute maximum is allowed between each playing.
F11. Orchestration: Demonstrate knowledge of the capabilities
of orchestral instruments, the craft of orchestration, and the historical stylistic use of the orchestra through responses to questions, analysis of examples, the transcription of a brief passage for orchestra or ensemble, and/or the reduction of an orchestral score for performance on the organ.
F12. Composition: Write a composition for unaccompanied
voices on a given text. The length will be specified. Imaginative use of the tools of composition will be expected.
7. Accompany with flexibility and musicianship.
8. Sight-read open scores including lines in C clefs.
11. Compose and arrange.
12. Demonstrate practical knowledge of orchestration.
13. Have a broad knowledge of music history and literature.
14. Be able to write in contrapuntal forms of both 16th and 18th century styles, and to analyze examples.
15. Transcribe from dictation.