CFA Faculty Biography

Laura Ellis
School of Music
Associate Professor
Specialization: Organ, carillon & harpsichord

T: (352) 273-3181
F: (352) 392-0461

P.O. Box 117900
Gainesville, Florida 32611-7900

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Laura Ellis has been on the facutly in the School of Music since 2003. Dr. Ellis teaches undergraduate and graduate organ, harpsichord, and carillon. In addition to applied lessons, Ellis teaches courses in the Sacred Music area.

Ellis is a graduate of Luther College (Decorah, Iowa) and holds a Master of Music degree in church music and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in organ performance from the University of Kansas. Her major organ teachers have been James Higdon and William Kuhlman. While in residence at the University of Kansas, she studied carillon with Albert Gerken.

Prior to her Florida appointment, Ellis served as professor of music at McMurry University and held the position of parish organist at the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest in Abilene, TX. Ellis began her teaching career at the University of the Ozarks in Clarksville, Arkansas.

Ellis was invited to discuss the music of her carillon mentor at the 2012 Congress of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America. The presentation entitled "Bert Gerken: His Arrangements and Original Compositions for Carillon."

In June 2010 Ellis performed a solo carillon recital for the 2010 Congress of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America (GCNA) at Rockefeller Memorial Chapel on the campus of the University of Chicago. During this same congress, Ellis passed her advancement examination recital on The Millennium Carillon in Naperville, Illinois, and is now a carillonneur member of the GCNA.

Ellis presented a solo organ recital at the Region IV Mid-winter conference of the American Guild of Organists in January 2010. In this recital she premiered, "Praise," a composition by University of Florida composition faculty member Paul Richards based on Psalm 150:3-5.

Recital engagements as organist have included appearances with the Jacksonville (FL) Symphony, Piccolo Spoleto (Charleston, SC), Westminster Abbey, and various locations throughout Florida, Texas, and the South. In addition to her performances on the carillon in Century Tower on the University of Florida campus, Ellis has performed solo carillon recitals throughout the United States and Canada. Recent appearances include recitals at International Carillon Festival in Springfield, Illinois; Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa; the University of Rochester (NY); Alfred University (NY); and the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, Spokane, Washington.

In October 2007 Ellis traveled to Australia for a series of five recitals, including a solo organ recital on the Great Hall Organ at the University of Sydney. She also performed solo carillon recitals at the University of Sydney and at the National Carillon in the capital city of Canberra.

Active in the American Guild of Organists (AGO), Ellis was recently re-elected as Southeast Region Councillor. She serves as director of the Music and Publications Committee for the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America (GCNA)and serves on the organization's Board of Directors.

A former winner of the Gruenstein Memorial Organ Competition, Ellis is active as a recitalist and clinician. Her CD entitled “Legacy: Laura Ellis Plays the Organ Works of Jeanne Demessieux,” was released under the Pro Organo label. 

2014-2015 Recital & Presentation Schedule

Organ Recital
Sunday, September 7 , 2014
Baptist Church of the Covenant
Birmingham, Alabama 

American Guild of Organists Installation
Treasure Coast Chapter
September 21, 2014
Trinity Episcopal Church
Vero Beach, Florida

Faculty Organ Recital
Tuesday, September 30 , 2014
University Auditorium
Gainesville, Florida

American Guild of Organists
National Council Meeting
October 1-4, 2014
Clarksville, Indiana

Guest Recital & Masterclass
Texas Regional Carillon Conference
October 10-11, 2014
University of Texas-Austin

Guest Recital & Masterclass
Wellesley College
October 17-19, 2014
Wellesley, Massachusetts

Holiday Organ Recital
Sunday, December 7
Penney Memorial Church
Penney Farms, Florida

American Guild of Organists
National Council Meeting
April 16-18, 2014
Glendale, California  


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