Conference: Handel at the Keyboard

Friday and Saturday, March 25-26, 2011
St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral (1245 10th Avenue E.)
Trinity Episcopal Church (609 8th Avenue)
Seattle, Washington

The Western Early Keyboard Association (WEKA) presents a keyboard conference taking place in conjunction with the American Handel Festival and Conference. The WEKA event features internationally acclaimed early music performers in lecture-recitals, performances, and a master class. About the performers.

Friday, March 25
3:30 – 5:00 pm: Handel Organ Concerti Lecture-Recital, with organists J. Melvin Butler and Alan DePuy. Thompson Chapel in St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral

5:00 – 6:30 pm: Welcoming cocktails and dinner (no-host):

Galerias Gourmet Mexican Restaurant (5:15 pm reservation)
611 Broadway E.  (about 5 blocks south of St. Mark’s)
Seattle, WA  98102

Saturday, March 26
1:30 – 5:30 pm: Trinity Episcopal Church
Handel’s Continuo: Sonatas for Violin and Basso Continuo, with Tekla Cunningham, baroque violin and Jillon Stoppels Dupree, harpsichord.
Handel Harpsichord Master Class, with Byron Schenkman, facilitated by Kathryn Habedank
Handel: Cosmopolitan Composer, with Josh Lee, viola da gamba; JungHae Kim and Elaine Thornburgh, harpsichord

WEKA members: no charge (fee included in membership)
General Admission: Friday afternoon: $15; Saturday afternoon: $45
American Handel Society members and AHS Conference attendees, seniors, students:
Friday afternoon: $10; Saturday afternoon: $30.

Conference Registration Form (PDF form to download, fill out, and mail.)

Membership Form (2011) (Join WEKA by downloading this PDF, filling it out and mailing it.)

Directions, Parking, and Lodging:

Directions and Parking Information**UPDATED 03/06/2011

The American Handel Society Conference website lists several hotels on First Hill offering special rates. Mention the American Handel Festival to get the special rates. Hotel List.


J. Melvin Butler

J. MELVIN BUTLER is Canon Musician of Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral, Seattle, and has taught organ improvisation and church music at the University of Washington.  Also a professional violist, he performs regularly with the Onyx Chamber Players in Seattle.  Prior to arriving in Seattle in 1991, he was for many years Organist/Choirmaster of the Downtown Presbyterian Church in Rochester, NY.  During that time he was also Associate Professor of Church Music at the Eastman School of Music, a violist with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, and Music Director and Conductor of the Rochester Bach Festival Chorus.   During the Viet Nam war, he served his country as violist in the U.S. Navy String Quartet.

Mel Butler has performed in major concert halls, churches, and cathedrals in the U.S., the U.K. and Japan.  He often presents master classes and lectures on various aspects of church music, choral conducting, hymn playing, and improvisation, and has appeared as a lecturer and recitalist for conventions of the American Guild of Organists, the Organ Historical Society, and the Association of Anglican Musicians.  His organ CD’s, on the Loft and ReZound labels include French on the FlentropOut of This World (with the Boston Brass), all recorded on the Saint Mark’s Cathedral Flentrop; The Marion Camp Oliver Organ, recorded on the new Fritts organ at Saint Mark’s; and Tournemire in Oberlin recorded on the C. B. Fisk organ at Oberlin College.  His choral recordings with the Saint Mark’s Cathedral Choir appear on the Loft and Gothic labels.

Originally from Burlington, NC, Butler received the Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, studying organ with Garth Peacock, and the Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from the Eastman School of Music, studying with David Craighead.

Alan K. De Puy

Alan is a native of California who began his professional career as an organist at the age of nine. He attended undergraduate school at Chapman University in Orange, California, where he studied piano, accompanying and organ performance with Ronald Huntington. Alan attended graduate school at Arizona State University and studied organ performance with Robert Clark and Kimberly Marshall. He is also 1st place winner in four AGO (American Guild or Organist) sponsored competitions.

Prior to coming to Seattle, Alan served as organist at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Newport Beach, California; Holy Family Cathedral, Orange, California; Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California; and organist/choirmaster at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Phoenix, Arizona.

He has performed in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia.

Alan also severed as Artistic Director for the Cathedral Center for the Arts in Phoenix, Arizona. This was a not-for-profit arts organization that hosted visual arts shows monthly and hundreds of events and concerts a year with a focus on the underserved youth population.

Alan is currently Clerke of the Works and Assistant organist at Saint Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle.

Jillon Stoppels Dupree

Described as “one of the most outstanding early musicians in North America” (IONARTS) and “a baroque star” (Seattle Times), harpsichordist Jillon Stoppels Dupree has captivated audiences in cities ranging from London to Amsterdam to New York. Her world premiere recording of Philip Glass’s Concerto for Harpsichord and Chamber Orchestra with the Northwest Chamber Orchestra (heralded as “superb” by the New York Times) was released to high acclaim in fall of 2006 on the Orange Mountain Music label. Her playing can also be heard on the Meridian, Wild Boar, Decca and Delos record labels; and she has appeared live on BBC England, Polish National Television, CBS Television and National Public Radio

Ms. Dupree has been a featured artist at the highly-respected early music festivals of York (England), Boston and Berkeley, as well as at the National Music Museum, the Cleveland and Santa Barbara Museums of Art, and numerous universities and colleges. Her chamber music collaborations include performances with violinists Ingrid Matthews, Stanley Ritchie and Jaap Schröder; violists da gamba Wieland Kuijken and Margriet Tindemans; singers Julianne Baird, Ellen Hargis and Ann Monoyios; and recorder virtuosi Marion Verbruggen and Vicki Boeckman.

A recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship and the National Endowment for the Arts Solo Recitalists grant, Ms. Dupree has taught at the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, the University of Washington, and the University of Michigan. She is currently on the early music faculty at Seattle’s Cornish College of the Arts and is the founding director of the Gallery Concerts early music series in Seattle.

Byron Schenkman

Byron Schenkman was voted “Best Classical Instrumentalist” by the readers of the Seattle Weekly in 2006.  He performs as a soloist,  chamber musician, and as harpsichordist and artistic director of the Seattle Baroque Orchestra.  A recipient of the Erwin Bodky Award from the Cambridge Society for Early Music, Schenkman has recorded more than thirty discs of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century repertoire, including recordings on historical instruments from the National Music Museum and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.  He has been a featured guest with the Chameleon Arts Ensemble of Boston, the Daedalus Quartet, the Northwest Sinfonietta, and Philharmonia Northwest; he has also been a featured soloist at the Boston Early Music Festival and the Berkeley Festival.  His playing was described in The New York Times as “sparkling,” “elegant,” and “insightful.”  In 2009 he participated in the Haydn and Mendelssohn bicentennial celebrations with performances at the Frick Collection in New York and the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.  Schenkman is a graduate of the New England Conservatory and received his Master of Music degree with honors in performance from the Indiana University School of Music.  He currently teaches music history at Seattle University and is an adjunct instructor of piano and harpsichord at Cornish College of the Arts.

Kathryn Habedank, Master Class Facilitator

Kathryn Habedank, harpsichord/organ, is lecturer and affiliate artist at Pacific Lutheran University, in Tacoma, WA, where for the past nineteen years she has been instructor of harpsichord and Director of Early Music Concerts. At PLU she teaches early music chamber ensemble and often lectures on topics such as: the history of the keyboard, 17th & 18th century ornamentation, and the development of the early music movement. She is an active recitalist in the Pacific Northwest and sought after as an arts management consultant. From 1979-1991 Habedank was Assistant Minister of Music, Christ Episcopal Church, Tacoma.

Habedank received her keyboard training at Whitman College, Pacific Lutheran University (BM in Organ Performance) and the New England Conservatory of Music, Boston (MM in Organ Performance), where she studied organ with William Porter and Yuko Hayashi and harpsichord with Frances Fitch. She also holds a Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Montana.

In 1993 Habedank co-founded the acclaimed Classical Orchestra, Northwest Sinfonietta, and served as the orchestra’s Executive Director for ten years, 1993-2003. Among her recognitions is the Pierce County Margaret K. Williams award for Service in the Arts.

Habedank is currently Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Mu Phi Epsilon Foundation. She has served on numerous other boards including the Westfield Center for the Advancement of Keyboard Music, The Tacoma Youth Symphony, The American Guild of Organists (Tacoma Chapter), and most recently on the board of the Western Early Keyboard Association.

She lives in Seattle and part time in the Bitterroot Valley in Montana.

JungHae Kim

Korean-born Harpsichordist JungHae Kim earned her Bachelor’s Degree in harpsichord at the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, MD. She then earned a Master’s in Historical Performance in Harpsichord at the Oberlin Conservatory before completing her studies with Gustav Leonhardt in Amsterdam on a Haskell Scholarship. While in The Netherlands she also completed an Advanced Degree in Harpsichord Performance under Bob Van Asperen at the Sweelinck Conservatorium.

Ms. Kim has performed in concert throughout the United States, Europe and in Asia as a soloist and with numerous historical instrument ensembles including the Pierce Baroque Dance Company, the Los Angeles Baroque Orchestra, Music’s ReCreation, and Agave Baroque. She performed at the Library of Congress with American Baroque and frequently performs with her Bay Area period instrument group, Ensemble Mirable. As a soloist, Ms. Kim has performed with Musica Angelica, Brandywine Baroque, the New Century Chamber Orchestra, and with the San Francisco Symphony. Ms. Kim frequently teaches and performs at summer music  festivals throughout the world and in recent years has performed at the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival, the Music in The Vineyards Festival in Napa (CA), Oregon’s  Britt Festival, and as a soloist at the Assisi Music Festival in Italy.

JungHae Kim’s performances have been described as inspired, fluid, engaging, emotionally exquisite, warm, and inviting. Her unique style blends a sparkling virtuoso technique with a gentle and lyrical sensibility that makes music of this genre instantly accessible to the modern ear.

With Ensemble Mirable, Ms. Kim has released a number of fine chamber music recordings including Six Cello Sonatas by Jean Zewalt Triemer, and Conversations Galantes, the music of Louis Gabriel Guillemain. She has also produced a solo recording of English Virginal Music (The Virginalists), and recently soloed on four of J.S. Bach’s 13 harpsichord concertos with Brandywine Baroque Orchestra on a recording entitled: Johann Sebastian Bach Complete Harpsichord Concertos on Antique Instruments, released on the Plectra label. Her new Compact Disc Recording, Jean Henri D’Anglebert Pièces de Claveçin (1689), is now available on iTunes, Amazon,, and by visiting

Josh Lee

Cited for his “stylish and soulful playing,” Josh Lee performs on viols and double bass with some of the world’s leaders in early music. Josh is an alumnus of the Peabody Conservatory and the Longy School of Music where he studied double bass with Harold Hall Robinson and viol with Ann Marie Morgan and Jane Hershey. Founder of the Ensemble Ostraka, he has performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Carmel Bach Festival, Musica Pacifica, Boston Early Music Festival Orchestra, Seattle Baroque Orchestra, Les Délices, and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra. Josh’s performances have been heard on National Public Radio’s Performance Today and Harmonia, and he has recorded for Dorian, Koch International and Reference Recordings. Recently praised as “a master of the score’s wandering and acrobatic itinerary”  by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Josh is ecstatic to return as director of the third Viola da Gamba Society of America Young Players’ Weekend.

Elaine Thornburgh

Elaine Thornburgh performs on harpsichord throughout the United States as both soloist and in chamber ensemble.  A native of Key West, Florida, she was raised in San Francisco and began her study of the harpsichord with Alan Curtis while a student at the University of California at Berkeley.  She has studied harpsichord with Gustav Leonhardt and fortepiano with Malcolm Bilson and Laurette Goldberg.  A graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, she was a cash-prize winner at the Sixth Bruges International Harpsichord Competition. In 1984 she received the National Endowment for the Arts Solo Recitalist Award and toured California for many years as an Arts Council Touring Artist.

Elaine Thornburgh teaches harpsichord at Stanford University and privately in the San Francisco Bay area. For many years she has taught for the Stanford Continuing Studies department. In April 2000, as the first American harpsichordist to tour several cities in Poland, she performed seven recitals and five master classes, primarily focused around the music of J.S. Bach. During subsequent seasons she has had a week-long residency at the University of Virginia, and toured throughout the state of California, including performances at CSU Northridge, Fresno County Free Library, Sonora Bach Festival, the California Academy of Sciences, Stanford University, and for various arts councils. She was invited to give a lecture/recital entitled, “Behind the Notes: Unlocking the Musical Gestures for Harpsichord” and perform the music of William Byrd at the first national early keyboard conference hosted by the National Music Museum in Vermillion, South Dakota. She has been honored to give recitals and present lecture/recitals on historic keyboard instruments from the nation’s most prestigious collections, including instruments at the Smithsonian Institution, Colonial Williamsburg, the Huntington Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Her fourth CD, a two-CD Scarlatti set, was released October 2000 on Lyrichord’s Early Music Series. Elaine Thornburgh has recorded for Koch International Classics harpsichord performances of Sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti and of Grounds and Variations by William Byrd and, accompanying soprano Judith Nelson on the fortepiano, Haydn’s English Love Songs.  Her Scarlatti CD was voted Critic’s Choice in 1991 by Gramophone.  As founding Chair of the Western Early Keyboard Association (WEKA), Ms. Thornburgh encourages an active keyboard community since 1997 through newsletters, regional gatherings and an annual conference. She enjoys Navajo weaving in her spare time.