B i o g r a p h y
Stephen Buzard is the Director of Music at historic St. James Cathedral in Chicago. As organist and choirmaster, Mr. Buzard provides music for all parish and diocesan services and directs the Cathedral Choir. HIs predecessors at St. James include Leo Sowerby, Dudley Buck, Clerence Dickinson, and Peter Lutkin.
In addition to his career as a church musician, Mr. Buzard keeps a busy schedule as a concert organist, offering organ concerts, master classes, and choral workshops. Visit the contact page for inquiries.
Mr. Buzard came to St. James from Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue in New York City where he served as Assistant Organist until the untimely passing of Director of Music John Scott in August 2015. Following this tragedy, Mr. Buzard became the Acting Organist and Director of Music, directing the prestigious choir of men and boys in their rigorous routine of daily services.
Mr. Buzard holds a Master of Music degree from the Yale Institute of Sacred Music where he studied organ with Thomas Murray and improvisation with Jeffrey Brillhart. While at Yale, Mr. Buzard served as organ scholar at Trinity on the Green, New Haven, Connecticut; as principal organist of Berkeley Divinity School at Yale University; and as organist for Marquand Chapel, Yale Divinity School. Mr. Buzard earned his Bachelor of Music degree from Westminster Choir College in 2010 where he studied organ with virtuoso Ken Cowan. While an undergraduate, Mr. Buzard was concurrently organ scholar at Trinity Episcopal Church, Princeton, New Jersey and Director of Music for the Episcopal Church at Princeton University. Before starting at Yale Mr. Buzard spent a year in England as Senior Organ Scholar of Wells Cathedral where he accompanied and conducted in daily services and assisted in the training of the boy and girl choristers.
Mr. Buzard was raised in a household full of organ music. His father is the president and founder of Buzard Pipe Organbuilders, and his mother is the organist-choirmaster at the Chapel of St. John the Divine in Champaign, Illinois. Mr. Buzard was the winner of the 2010 Arthur Poister Competition and the 2009 Joan Lippincott Competition for Excellence in Organ Performance. He is an Associate of the American Guild of Organists, winning the Elmer and Associate Prizes for highest score on an AGO exam nationally, and currently serves as Dean of the Chicago Chapter. His career was featured in the AGO monograph The Making of a Virtuoso.
His premier recording “In Light or Darkness,” available through Delos Records, has received wide critical acclaim. A review for The Diapason wrote: “Buzard paints the color and shape of every phrase with a maturity belying his youthfulness… if this level of skill doesn't dazzle you, then I do not know what will.”
Mr. Buzard is under exclusive management of Karen McFarlane Artists, Inc.