By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma History Center (OHC) will present internationally renowned organist Brett Valliant as the featured artist for its October Kilgen Organ performance entitled “Discovering the Unit Orchestra!”
The performance, scheduled for Monday, October 26, from 7 to 8:30 p.m., will take place in the Devon Great Hall of the OHC, 800 Nazih Zuhdi Drive in Oklahoma City. Doors will open at 6 p.m., and seating is first come, first served.
Tickets are $10 for Oklahoma Historical Society members and $20 for nonmembers, and may be reserved by calling 405-522-0765.
Due to COVID-19 precautions, the OHC will limit ticket sales to 100 seats and will require that each attendee wear a mask.
The title of the performance, “Discovering the Unit Orchestra!,” refers to what theater organs were called when they were first introduced to the public in the early 20th century. By replacing theater orchestras with theater organs as the accompaniment for silent movies and plays, all of the orchestra was included in one “unit.”
Inspired by the organ at church when he was just three years old, Valient, at age four began piano instruction, and soon after was studying organ as well.
By the age of 12, Valliant was employed as a church organist and performed his first international concert tour at age 19. For 29 years he was the organist and music director of First United Methodist Church of Wichita, Kansas, where he played a large pipe organ and was seen and heard by thousands on the church’s television program.
Brett’s recordings have been featured on National Public Radio’s “Pipe Dreams” as well as the National Bible Broadcasting Network.
Today Valliant is one of two resident organists at Mesa, Arizona’s iconic Organ Stop Pizza, which houses the world’s largest theater organ and entertains thousands of patrons each year.
In addition to his playing at Organ Stop, Valliant is known for accompanying and scoring silent films and appears annually at several film festivals. Along with regular appearances at American Theatre Organ Society and American Guild of Organists conventions, Brett has toured extensively as a concert artist throughout the United States, Australia, New Zealand and Europe.
The Oklahoma History Center is a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society and is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, National Archives and is an accredited member of the American Alliance of Museums.
The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people.
Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state.
For more information about the Oklahoma Historical Society, visit okhistory.org.