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James Kibbie
Regents' Proceedings

James Kibbie, D.M.A., professor of music in the School of Music, Theatre & Dance, retired from active faculty status on May 31, 2023.

Professor Kibbie received his B.M. (1971) degree and his M.M. (1972) degree in organ performance from North Texas State University, and his D.M.A. (1981) degree in organ performance from the University of Michigan. He joined the University of Michigan faculty in 1981, in the Department of Organ, as a lecturer. He was promoted to assistant professor in 1982, associate professor in 1988, and professor in 2001.

Professor Kibbie is internationally renowned as an authority on the organ music of Johann Sebastian Bach. He has performed the complete cycle of Bach organ works in a series of eighteen recitals and is in constant demand as a Bach recitalist and clinician. His recordings of the complete Bach works on historic baroque organs in Germany have been welcomed with enthusiastic critical and audience acclaim. Professor Kibbie maintains a full schedule of concert, recording, and festival engagements throughout North America and Europe, including appearances at the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris, Royal Festival Hall in London, Dvořak Hall in Prague, and Lincoln Center in New York. A frequent jury member of international organ competitions, he has himself been awarded the Grand Prix d’Interprétation at the prestigious International Organ Competition of Chartres, France, and is also the only American to have won the International Organ Competition of the Prague Spring Festival in the former Czechoslovakia.

Professor Kibbie’s performances have been broadcast on radio and television in the USA, Canada and Europe. His extensive discography includes “Merrily on Hill,” performed on the famed Skinner organ in Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, works of Dieterich Buxtehude recorded on the historic 1687 Schnitger organ of Norden, Germany, and discs of music by Bach, Franck, Alain, Tournemire, Sowande, Buck, Morrison, and contemporary Czech composers. Dr. Kibbie’s “audio holiday cards,” recorded on the Létourneau organ in his residence and issued as free internet downloads, are a popular annual tradition.

The Regents now salute this distinguished faculty member by naming James Kibbie, professor emeritus of music.