Our organ is beautifully played every service by Louis Shirer. Having spent more than 30 years as a Church Musician in the Carolinas, New Jersey and New York, Louis returned to Columbia where he was the assistant to John Haney at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral. Later he assumed the position of Organist and Director of Handbells at Eastminster Presbyterian Church, a position he held for 16 years. Louis was appointed Organist at Washington Street United Methodist Church in 2011.
Since 1990 Louis has taught Music Appreciation and Music Theory as an adjunct faculty member in the Humanities Department of Midlands Technical College. He was honored in 1998 by being named Adjunct Faculty of the Year for his department.
Louis holds degrees in Organ Performance from Winthrop University and Westminster Choir College (Princeton, NJ). He continued his doctoral work at the University of South Carolina. His teachers have included Thomas Spacht, David Lowry, Donald, McDonald, Joan Lippincott, David Hurd and William Bates. He has also coached with the notable German organist and teacher Harald Vogel.
In 1984, Louis made his New York orchestral debut with the Nassau Symphony where he performed a Haydn concerto as soloist and played the organ part to Honegger’s Christmas Cantata. He has also appeared, not only as a member of the South Carolina Philharmonic Orchestra, but also as soloist in concertos of Handel and the Saint-Saëns “Organ” Symphony. The performance was later heard on a broadcast of South Carolina Public Radio. He has also performed the Saint-Saëns with the USC Symphony.
Louis has traveled throughout the United States and Canada performing solo recitals and accompanying choir tours. He has performed at the Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC and will soon be playing his third recital on the Concert Series at St. Philips Cathedral in Atlanta, Georgia.