First Presbyterian San Anselmo offers a remarkable array of beautiful music each Sunday and throughout the year.
Come discover music that will stir the soul and lift the spirit, whether it be hymns sung on Sunday mornings, a special musical performance by our chancel choir and guest orchestra, or one of the many orchestras and chorales that use our remarkable venue.
Our sanctuary, with its amazing acoustics, welcomes a wide array of performing groups including ECHO Chamber Orchestra, Marin Baroque, the Marin Girls' Chorus, and Consort Chorale.
FPSA Chancel Choir and Orhestra perform Feel the Spirit - Deep River arranged by John Rutter. Daniel Canosa, Conductor. Bonnie Brooks, mezzo-soprano.
Daniel Canosa, Director of Music
Native Argentinian Daniel Canosa is our Director of Music. Considered one of the best conductors of his generation, he's led orchestras and choruses in Argentina, Europe, and the United States. His repertoire spans symphonic and choral masterworks of all periods.
Read more about Daniel Canosa in the February/March 2018 edition of Marin Arts and Culture.
Click to read article.
Twice a year, enthusiastic singers from the wider community and a small orchestra join us to present more challenging works. Our varied repertoire has included longer pieces such as Durufle’s Requiem, Kodaly’s Missa Brevis, the Passion of Saint John by Schutz, a compendium of spiritual arrangements by Rutter, and Ramirez’ Missa Criolla.
In 2016, the Chancel Choir and guest singers sang Karl Jenkin’s The Armed Man at Carnegie Hall. It was a privilege to be the only American choir invited to sing this poignant piece with 300 choristers from Europe.
The Leonard William Buck Memorial Organ and Chancel Organ
Our worship service features music played on very fine pipe organs.
The spectacular gallery organ was a generous gift from Beryl Hamilton Buck, in memory of her husband, Leonard W. Buck.
Designed by Lawrence Schoenstein and built with his son Terrence Schoenstein and Richard Harger, its all-encompassing sound was heard first on Christmas Eve, 1965. Wilbur Russell, church organist and Professor of Sacred Music at the San Francisco Theological Seminary, and Ludwig Altman, organist at Temple Emanu-el in San Francisco, served as design consultants.
The chancel organ, constructed in the early 1980s, imparts a more Baroque sound. Lawrence Schoenstein again led the building team and church volunteers created the blower room and chamber for the new pipes.
Schoenstein & Company Organ Builders takes you through the process of designing, constructing, and fine-tuning their instruments, featuring John Parfitt playing our balcony organ. Courtesy of The San Francisco Exploratorium, as part of it's program “Resonance: Unheard Sounds, Undiscovered Music,” 2013.
More about the organs
As home to the San Anselmo Organ Festival (1991-2003), we welcomed a distinguished roster of concert organists and hosted several improvisation competitions. We continue to welcome performances by guest artists and organ student rehearsals and recitals.
Mr. Russell, who played these magnificent instruments for 45 years, claimed the Buck Organ contains 62 groups of 48 pipes, give or take a few. Even though you can’t see or count them all, we have almost 4000 channels for inimitable sound to fill our sanctuary space.