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R e v i e w s




            “From the opening pages of Pièce héroïque, it was clear that Dettra is a master of this symphonic style of organ music … These recitals were a true tour-de-force showing Dettra's musicianship, technique, and memory to be of the highest caliber. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                CVNC, January 29, 2022




            “Rare’s the pianist who’d play two recitals totaling more than two hours of music, all from memory, in a single day. That was organist Scott Dettra’s awe-inspiring accomplishment Saturday afternoon and evening … these performances felt so idiomatic, so viscerally right, so surely balancing expression with structural overview. Dettra gave the music natural rise and fall, organic ebb and flow. Technical assurance was never in doubt. There was plenty of flair in the Pièce héroïque and A major Fantaisie, but also great warmth in the Prière and C major Fantaisie. Flowing melodies in the E major and A minor Chorals were spun out as is if by a great singer.”

                                                                                                                                                                                 The Dallas Morning News, January 9, 2022

The Anglo-American Classic Organ 

            "While organ recital discs abound, ones that are exceptional rather than merely good are rare. Here is one of those proverbial hen's teeth examples with uniformly excellent repertoire intelligently chosen, superbly performed by a gifted interpreter on a first-rate instrument, and splendidly recorded and documented...Dettra is an organist with both impeccable musical taste and dazzling technique to burn...An extraordinary organ recital by a brilliant organist...Urgently recommended to all music lovers, not just organ mavens."



            “Top-notch technique and musicianship”

The Dallas Morning News, October 23, 2016

BOSTON: 2014 AGO National Convention

“Dettra programmed to the space, and to the lush sonorities of the organ … A C-minor Prelude and Fugue by Healey Willan, Howells’s Psalm-Prelude No. 2, and Seth Bingham’s Passacaglia in E Minor fit the instrument like luxurious kid gloves, Dettra manipulating colors, crescendos, and decrescendos with apparently effortless suavity. The instrument delivered the French of Duruflé’s Prelude and Fugue on the Name of ALAIN in an upper-crust Boston accent, but both here and in Thierry Escaich’s Évocation II, Dettra supplied such irresistible rhythmic drive, inflected just so, that it didn’t matter. Start to finish, this was music making of absolute authority and sophisticated expression, one of the week’s high points.”

The American Organist, September 2014


“Was any player more poetic than Scott Dettra at Trinity Church? To a hushed audience Dettra traversed the 20th century with a mature line, focusing on the organ’s quieter side and creating many varieties of climax besides the merely powerful.”

Choir & Organ, September/October 2014




“Scott Dettra masterfully played Bach’s towering Fantasia and Fugue in G minor, BWV 542. Full of dynamic contrast and dazzling facility, Dettra’s performance was certainly a moment of pure euphoria for the audience”       

The Washington Examiner, November 12, 2011




           “Watching Dettra at the instrument was a display of utter amazement.”

The Washington Examiner, March 30, 2011




           “His playing had a rhythmic momentum that gave his performances a sense of inevitability and drive.”

The Washington Post, March 29, 2011

WASHINGTON: 2010 AGO National Convention   

“The organ voluntary, Festival Fanfare by Kenneth Leighton, was deftly played by Scott Dettra. The energy and stamina of the cathedral organist is amazing, for later in the day he would play at the Bach Vespers as well as at the opening concert at the National Cathedral, where he played Samuel Barber’s Toccata Festiva, op. 36 and the demanding organ part in Paul Paray’s Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc.”


“Dettra was organist for the opening service at 8:30am, organist for this service, and organist for the evening concert back at the National Cathedral. He is an outstanding musician, and his ability to seamlessly go from the cathedral organ to the Johan Deblieck continuo organ for his continuo part in the Bach cantata at St. Paul’s, up to the organ loft at St. Paul’s to play the St. Paul’s Schantz three-manual organ, and then to the cathedral again that evening, was more than remarkable.”


“The program began with Scott Dettra performing the Toccata Festiva, op. 36 (1960) by Samuel Barber. Dettra performed this work with excitement and verve as if he had rested and prepared all day in order to wow this audience of 2,000-plus organists.”

The Diapason, January 2011


“The postlude, Fuga sopra il Magnificat, BWV 733, was superbly played by Scott Dettra, who was the organist for the entire service, running between the main gallery organ and the chancel, where he played continuo with the Consort. His playing in the Vespers was stunning, but knowing that he had played the opening convocation that morning and would be performing again that evening was even more impressive.”


“The fiery Toccata Festiva by Samuel Barber is essentially a single-movement organ concerto lasting about 15 minutes. Tying the work to the National Cathedral, it is interesting to note that the organ soloist at the work’s 1960 premiere with the Philadelphia Orchestra was Paul Calloway, then organist of the cathedral. The performance of the works at this year’s convention featured current cathedral organist Scott Dettra, who was fully up to the challenge … Another noteworthy feature is the technically demanding pedal cadenza, ably handled by Mr. Dettra. The distance between the conductor and orchestra and the organ console seemed to present no obstacle to a finely coordinated performance.”

The American Organist, October 2010




           “His virtuosity was simply remarkable”

The Washington Examiner, December 22, 2010

NEW YORK              

“Scott Dettra played the organ with flag-waving panache.”     

The Washington Post, June 1, 2003



PHILADELPHIA: 2002 AGO National Convention

            “Scott Dettra’s service playing was a model of inventive, uplifting support.”

The American Organist, October 2002



DUBLIN: 1996 Dublin International Organ Compeition           

“Dettra played the Bach with a greater lightness and clarity than the others, imparting a rhythmic spring to the notes … The best Widor playing at Christ Church Cathedral on Saturday night came from Dettra, who played two movements from the Symphony No. 6 with compelling intensity.”

The Irish Times, June 25, 1996

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