About Us

Marilyn BieryMarilyn Biery, AAGO, ASCAPlus award winner, was born in Elmhurst, Illinois, in 1959. Her childhood years were spent in Sandwich, Illinois, where her father, a Presbyterian minister, was pastor of The Federated Church.  Her organ training began there, with Norma Washburn Kentner, a student of Robert Reeves at Northern Illinois University.  She is a Pi Kappa Lambda graduate of Northwestern University with Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in Organ Performance, where she studied with Richard Enright and Grigg Fountain.  In 1982 she was a finalist in the National Open Competition in Organ Playing, sponsored by the American Guild of Organists.  Marilyn has served as Director of Music Ministries at The First Church of Christ in Hartford, Connecticut, Associate Director of Music at the Cathedral of Saint Paul in Saint Paul, Minnesota, Minister of Music at Metropolitan United Methodist Church, Detroit, Michigan, and is currently Music Director/Organist at Fort Street Presbyterian Church in Detroit.  She holds the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts in organ performance from the University of Minnesota, and has been on the music faculty at Wayne State University.  Marilyn is a former Director of the National Young Artists Competition in Organ Performance, sponsored by the AGO.
Marilyn has collaborated with a number of American composers, including Libby Larsen, David Evan Thomas, Stephen Paulus, Pamela Decker and James Hopkins.  A series of her articles on American Organ Music was printed in The American Organist from July 2000 to June 2003; other articles have been published in The Diapason, on composer Harold Stover, organ professor Grigg Fountain, and the late Roy Johnson, former organ professor at the University of Arizona.
10448872071111CDP smJames Biery (pronounced “Beery”), FAGO, ChM, was born in England in 1956 while his father, a U.S. Air Force officer, was stationed at High Wycombe.  In 1957 his family returned to Nebraska where his father was stationed at Offutt Air Force base; he lived there through his high school years, studying the organ at First Central Congregational Church in Omaha with Roger Arnold. He is a Pi Kappa Lambda graduate of Northwestern University with Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in Organ Performance where he studied with Grigg Fountain and Wolfgang Rűbsam.  From 1982-1989 he was Director of Music at Holy Trinity Church in Wallingford, Connecticut.  In 1986 he was awarded the Fellowship certificate from the AGO, receiving the prize for the highest score on the exam in the nation. He received ASCAPlus awards annually from 2006 – 2016.  He was Organist and Director of Music at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford, Conn., from 1989 until 1996. From 1996 until 2010 he was the Director of Music at the Cathedral of St. Paul, St. Paul, Minnesota. He holds the Fellow and Choirmaster certificates of the American Guild of Organists, and has served as Dean of the Twin Cities AGO Chapter.  In 2010 James was appointed Minister of Music at Grosse Pointe Memorial (Presbyterian) Church in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan. See The American Organist, July 2002, for Marilyn’s article about James’ organ music.