Raymond Weidner, PhD
Dr. Weidner is a nationally recognized composer of instrumental, choral, and organ works. His compositions are found in the catalogues of National Music, Paraclete Press, and Zimbel Press, and have been performed by such prestigious choirs as the Westminster Choir (Princeton, N.J.) and the Gloriae Dei Cantores (Orleans, Mass.) among other professional and collegiate choruses.
For two consecutive seasons, his works have been featured at the Spoleto Festival in Charleston, S.C., and nationally over NPR's Theme and Variations.
His compositions have received excellent reviews in both local and national venues:
- Psalm 130 for chorus and orchestra was called "...a work of epic grandeur" (National Public Radio)
- O Sacrum Convivium for women's ensemble and harp was called "...a lovely work...in a style similar to the works of John Taverner" (American Record Guide)
- The cantata O Vos Omnes for choir, organ, and strings was reviewed by the Annapolis Capital: "The piece was easily the most memorable choral work on the program, which is really saying something, considering that it was juxtaposed against Felix Mendelssohn's O Sacred Head and Jean Langlais' Missa Salve Regina...This is clearly a work that should become part of the mainstream Lenten choral repertoire."
- His Missa Brevis was one of five works selected from the entire catalogue of Paraclete Press for performance at their 25th anniversary celebration
Dr. Weidner holds a bachelor's degree in music from Westminster Choir College, a master's degree in music from Western Michigan University, and a PhD from Michigan State University.
He has performed under such notable conductors as Leonard Bernstein, Leopold Stokowski, Roger Wagner, and David Willcocks. He has over 40 years experience in the field of church music, having served churches in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Oklahoma, Maryland, and Virginia, and has been active as a clinician and instructor at the college level.
As a choral director, he developed professional and semi-professional choruses in Michigan and Oklahoma and wrote and produced a weekly radio program devoted to choral music over KCMA-FM. As an organist, he has performed throughout the United States, at Salisbury Cathedral (England), and on the famous Wanamaker organ in Philadelphia. He was artistic director and conductor of the Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra (Jackson, Miss.), and is the author of two books.
He is currently director of music at First Presbyterian Church, Lynchburg, Virginia and teaches composition at LC.