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Lenten Organ Concert Series – Gene Hodges
March 8, 2017 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
The opening concert of this year’s series will be on Wednesday, March 8th at 12:00 noon and will feature Gene Hodges. Gene was born and raised in Moultrie, a sleepy little agricultural town in southwest Georgia sixty miles northeast of Tallahassee. His performing career began at age three when he sang Malotte’s The Lord’s Prayer for his grandmother’s Sunday School class at Moultrie’s First Methodist Church, and he’s been singing ever since. At age six, Gene rode his tricycle to his first piano lesson, and ten years later he began formal study of the organ. The summer following his sophomore year of high school, he filled in as organist/choir director for the largest Baptist church in Moultrie, and he’s been directing choirs and playing the organ for church services ever since. After receiving his degree in Choral Music Education from Florida State University in 1974 (principle: organ; secondary: voice), Gene set out for Atlanta to pursue a career in the theatre. For the next ten years he sang, acted and tap-danced his way through performing arts halls all over the eastern USA. Gene’s theatrical career came to a halt when he was called home to Moultrie in 1984, but while there, he took over as organist/choir director for his former organ teacher at Moultrie’s First Presbyterian Church. He would hold that position for the next six years. After selling the family home, Gene left Moultrie and moved to Florida where he served as organist and choir director for St. David’s Episcopal Church in Lakeland. But the big city beckoned so Gene returned to the Atlanta area where he played and directed at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in historic Grant Park. In March of 1999, Gene moved to Venice, FL, and for his first two years there, served as organist at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Port Charlotte. In 2001, Gene became the service organist and choir accompanist at Grace United Methodist Church in Venice. In 2007, he assumed the additional role at Grace Church as Director of Traditional Music where he led the traditional vocal and handbell choirs. In 2007, Gene added to his church duties the position of Saturday Organist at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Venice. In October, 2016, Gene sold his home in Venice, retired from his full time position at Grace UMC, and moved to St. Augustine.
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