The Alumnae Auditorium was full on the evening of October 11. The AE event featured Christopher Henley, a talented organist from Talladega, and an Allen organ donated by Trustee Jackie Brunson ’58 in 1996.
The organ is a 2-manual, digital MDS-36 and was donated in honor of Brunson’s husband, Dr. Emmett Thomas Brunson. Brunson herself earned her bachelor of arts in music education from Judson, and later received a masters of science in counseling and psychology in 1988 from Troy University. She was the second female in Judson history to be chair of the Board of Trustees, which she has been a member of since 1972.
Henley serves as both a church and concert organist and has received many accolades in his career, among which was being named one of the “20 Under 30” by “The Diapson Journal” for his work in organ/choral music. He played a variety of works in his concert, including three hymn tunes by Alabama native Sam Batt Owens.
Dr. St. Clair, who attended the University of Alabama at the same time as Henley while pursuing her doctorate, expressed her enthusiasm for the evening: “Chris is a gifted organist whose playing and performances always inspire me.” She continued, “His program selection was quite diverse, allowing him to illustrate every color and nuance of the Allen organ, and he played with great musicality, technical prowess, and passion. He is a magnificent artist placing every single note exactly as he wants it to be. The evening was a remarkable success.”