About David

David Perry Ouzts is Minister of Music and Liturgy of Church of the Holy Communion (Episcopal), Memphis, Tennessee, where he conducts the Parish Choir, Motet Choir, Holy Communion Ringers, and Taize Schola; coordinates the music for the weekly Taize and Celtic Sunday evening services; and is responsible for all liturgies and directs the overall musical life of the parish

A native of Woodruff, South Carolina, he began piano study at age seven. His earliest training as an organist began in 1977 in the Alia Ross Lawson Academy of the Arts at Converse College in Spartanburg, where he studied with Converse organ professor Dr. John Ryan Turnbull. His first professional position was as a high school student when he served as organist of St. James United Methodist Church in Spartanburg.

David brings over twenty-five years of full-time church music experience to Holy Communion Parish, having served parishes in West Virginia, Texas, Kansas, and Tennessee. At Grace Episcopal Cathedral, Topeka, Kansas, he was Canon Musician and Liturgist, serving on the diocesan liturgy and music commission and the advisory board for the Leadership Program for Musicians Serving Small Congregations; in Topeka he also served on the Mayor’s Council on Diversity. In Houston he served as senior associate musician for the 8,400 member St. Luke's United Methodist Church, serving also on the executive committees of the Houston American Guild of Organists, Choristers Guild, and American Guild of English Handbell Ringers. In West Virginia he was parish musician of Trinity Episcopal Church in Huntington, music and liturgy consultant for the Diocese of West Virginia, music director of Congregation B’nai Sholom, and adjunct organ instructor at Marshall University

In addition to his duties as music director at Holy Communion, David also serves as Chapel Organist for St. Mary’s Episcopal School, which shares the facilities of Church of the Holy Communion. A member of the American Guild of Organists, American Choral Directors Association, and the Royal School of Church Music, David is listed in the 2008 edition of International Who’s Who in Music and was honored in 1990 by the Order of Kentucky Colonels for his contributions to the arts communities in the tri-state region of West Virginia, Kentucky, and Ohio. He is a Past Dean of the Memphis and Huntington (WV) AGO chapters and recently served as Chair of Professional Concerns and Development of the Association of Anglican Musicians.David has been a clinician for liturgy, organ and organ improvisation workshop and has performed organ recitals throughout the United States, including the St. Thomas Church in New York City, Washington National Cathedral, and the Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, South Carolina. He is a life-member of the VoiceCare Network, where he completed studies in vocal pedagogy.

David holds a Bachelor of Music degree in organ performance from Furman University, Greenville, South Carolina, where he studied organ with W. Lindsay Smith, Jr., and harpsichord with David A. Gibson. At Furman he was awarded the prestigious Daniel Music Scholarship for four years and also served as the university student carillonneur. While earning his Master of Music degree in organ performance at the Yale School of Music, he studied organ with Robert Baker, founder of the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and longtime dean of the School of Music of Union Theological Seminary in New York. At Yale he also earned a diploma from the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, where he studied organ improvisation with Gerre Hancock and received a diploma in Anglican studies from the Berkeley Divinity School, studying liturgy and church history with Jeffery W. Rowthorn.

As a post-graduate student in organ and church music at the Jacobs School of Music of Indiana University in Bloomington, he studied organ and church music with Marilyn Keiser and choral conducting with Dr. Michael Schwartzkopf; there he also served as Graduate Assistant to organ department chair Larry Smith. In 2008 David earned the Doctor of Sacred Music from the Graduate Theological Foundation in South Bend, Indiana. While on sabbatical leave in 2009, he studied systematic and liberal theologies as an Oxford Foundation Fellow at the University of Oxford, England.

David Ouzts,
Dec 8, 2015, 6:58 PM