Organ studies at the LMTA. History
The origins of the organ studies stem from Kaunas Music School, founded in 1919 by Juozas Naujalis, a famous Lithuanian organist, composer and educator, where in 1922 an organ class was also opened. In 1933, Kaunas Music School was transformed into Kaunas Conservatoire (currently the LMTA) but in 1949, after World War II, in Soviet Lithuania, the organ class was closed and reopened only in 1962 on the initiative of Prof. Leopoldas Digrys, an organist. In 1968, Vilnius began to organise festivals of organ music featuring world-famous organists Maurice Duruflé, Jean Guillou (France), Guy Bovet (Switzerland), Jiři Reinberger (Czech Republic) and others.
In 1990, the LMTA Department of Organ was established on the basis of the organ class and a year later, in 1991, the first International M.K. Čiurlionis Piano and Organ Competition took place and is organised every four years. The Juozas Naujalis Young Organists Competition has been held since 2004.
In 1995, the Department was renamed the Department of Organ and Harpsichord, and its teachers are the finest organ and harpsichord players in Lithuania. The students of the Department have an opportunity to develop professionally and perform not only in the organ classrooms equipped at the LMTA; they also participate in concerts, festivals and various events organised in the capital and other cities in Lithuania.
In 2022, the Department of Organ and Harpsichord was merged with the Piano Department: from 1 April 2022 there is a Department of Piano and Organ.