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BIOGRAPHY

Peter Richard Conte’s nearly-unparalleled technical facility, brilliant ear for tonal color, and innovative programming style have made him one of the most revered and sought-after “orchestral” organists of this era. He was appointed Wanamaker Grand Court Organist in 1989 - only the fourth person to hold that title since the organ first played in 1911 – where he presides over the world’s largest fully-functioning musical instrument, at over 29,000 pipes, located at the Macy’s Department Store in the heart of downtown Philadelphia. The organ is heard in recital twice daily, six days per week, with Mr. Conte playing a majority of those recitals. He is also one of the producers and lead artist in the popular Christmas holiday shows at Macy’s and the annual Organ Day every June, each presenting truly grand music befitting of the grand space to routinely sold out crowds. Mr. Conte is also Principal Organist at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA, and, since 1991, has served as Choirmaster and Organist of Saint Clement’s Church, Philadelphia, where he directs a professional choir in an extensive music program firmly rooted in the high Anglo-Catholic tradition.

Mr. Conte is highly regarded as a skillful performer of the standard organ repertoire, arranger of orchestral and popular transcriptions, and silent film accompanist. His recitals can include such diverse works as Bernstein’s Overture to ‘Candide’, Dupré’s Symphonie Passion, Mussorgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain, “period pieces” such as Londonderry Air, and works by unknowns such as Firmin Swinnen and Oliphant Chuckerbutty. He has been featured several times on National Public Radio and on ABC television's "Good Morning America" and “World News Tonight.”

He has two radio shows: “The Wanamaker Organ Hour”, which airs on the first Sunday of each month, at 5:00pm (EST), and can be heard via the internet at WRTI.ORG; and each Wednesday evening at 7:00m (EST his Grand Court concert is streamed live on YesterdayUSA.com. He has appeared as a featured artist at numerous conventions of the American Guild of Organists and the Organ Historical Society, and has also performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Philly Pops, and with numerous orchestras around the country.

Peter Richard Conte has served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Organ at Rider University's Westminster Choir College, Princeton, NJ, where he taught Organ Improvisation. He is the 2008 recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Indiana University School of Music, Bloomington. In 2013, the Philadelphia Music Alliance honored him with a bronze plaque on the Avenue of the Arts’ Walk of Fame. His numerous recordings appear on the

Gothic, JAV, Pro Organo, Dorian, Raven, and DTR labels. His most recent CD, Virgil Fox Remembered, was released in May 2016 on the Raven label.

Peter Richard Conte is represented exclusively by Phillip Truckenbrod Concert Artists, LLC. 

Andrew Ennis has quickly gained wide recognition throughout Philadelphia and the East Coast as a trumpeter, flugelhornist, organist, music educator, and church musician. In addition to his instrumental work, Mr. Ennis is also a well-trained organist and music arranger and creates new symphonic-scale organ duets (such as Respighi’s Pines of Rome) for his performances with Peter Richard Conte at the Wanamaker organ and abroad. 

 

Mr. Ennis began his trumpet studies at age eight. He is a graduate of Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey, where he received his Bachelor of Music degree in instrumental music education, specializing in trumpet. His teachers have included David Bilger (principal trumpet of the Philadelphia Orchestra) and Bryan Appleby-Wineberg (professor of trumpet at Rowan University). He is the Band Director and Music Teacher at the Upper Pittsgrove School in Monroeville, NJ. He also serves as organist at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Camden, NJ.

 

In recent years Mr. Ennis has frequently appeared in duo performances as both flugelhornist and duo organist with Peter Richard Conte at the Wanamaker Organ in Macy’s, Philadelphia, Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA, and Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, CA. He was featured with Mr. Conte and pianist Jeremy Filsell in a performance of concerti (with the organ serving as the orchestra) sponsored by the Boston Chapter AGO in March 2016. 

 

In 2015 Mr. Conte and Mr. Ennis released a CD, My Heart at Thy Sweet Voice, on the GOTHIC label, the first-ever commercial album to exclusively feature music for flugelhorn and organ. All of the music on the CD is arranged by them. A second CD by the duo will be released in the 2019/2020 season. As a duo organist, Mr. Ennis also arranges and performs with Peter Conte large-scale transcriptions of symphonic works such as Respighi’s "Pines of Rome", Rimsky-Korsakov’s "Scheherazade", and Stravinsky’s "Round Dance of the Princesses" from The Firebird.

 

Andrew Ennis, in conjunction with Peter Richard Conte, is represented in North America exclusively by Phillip Truckenbrod Concert Artists, LLC.