Dr. Ryan Enright
Dr. Ryan Enright
Dr. Ryan Enright is widely recognized for his organ playing and improvising and he has performed organ recitals throughout Canada and parts of the United States. Enright enjoys performing important works of the organ’s literature, from around 1540 to the present day, attempting to approach each period of music in an informed and expressive way with style. During the church service he treats the hymns with creativity and improvises to adorn the service.
A native of Montreal, Quebec, Enright received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees—and Artist Diploma—in organ performance from McGill University. His teacher for the first two degrees was John Grew and the third was William Porter. Enright received his DMA in organ performance from the Eastman School of Music, where he studied repertoire and improvisation with William Porter. His first organ teacher in Montreal, Marc-André Doran, an excellent musician and organist, instilled in him a passion for organ playing and the great works of the literature. Additional teachers in Montreal were Gaston Arel and Jean LeBuis. Enright has studied the art of improvisation with William Porter and Julian Wachner, and has taken workshops with Gerre Hancock, Thierry Escaich, Pamela Ruiter-Feenstra, and Christophe Mantoux on various styles and techniques of improvisation.
In California, he has performed at churches in the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento. He has competed internationally, and his awards include first prizes in the Canadian Music Competition (1997), Quebec Organ Competition (2004), and National Organ Playing Competition of the Royal Canadian College Of Organists (2007). In the summer of 2013, Enright accompanied the Sacramento Choral Society and Orchestra (SCSO) on their tour of Italy (Venice, Lucca, and Rome). At St. Peter’s Basilica, Enright played solos at communion (an improvised fughetta with “O Canada” as a fugue subject -it was July 1 after all!) and for the postlude. In 2015, he accompanied the SCSO again, this time to Northern France and England, performing a grand improvisation in French Classical style and other period music on the great 1741 Parisot organ (rebuilt, with some recent new pipework) of the Abbaye Saint-Martin de Mondaye in Normandy. (The improvisation can be found on Youtube.)
Enright relocated to Sacramento in October of 2011 to become Organist of St. John’s Lutheran Church and accompanist for the Sacramento Choral Society and Orchestra, Sacramento State University's Women’s Chorus and Men's Choir, and the Schola Cantorum of Sacred Heart Church. In August of 2016 Dr. Enright recorded an album entitled "St. John's Resounds" with his accomplished harpist friend Beverly Wesner-Hoehn. Recorded at St. John's on the splendid Bedient organ, the album consists of a Rachel Laurin's virtuosic Fantasy for organ and harp, and solo organ and harp works. Ryan's passions away from the organ loft include hiking, Argentine Tango, yoga, and whitewater rafting and kayaking.