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Barbara Baird has been a member of the University of Oregon music faculty since 1989, teaching organ, piano and harpsichord. She is also Director of Music Ministries at First Congregational Church, Eugene, Oregon, where she has served since 1982.
After earning her Bachelor of Music degree in Organ Performance from Texas Christian University, she studied three years at the Cologne Conservatory of Music in Cologne, Germany. Baird received her Master of Music degree in Harpsichord Performance from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. Her Doctor of Musical Arts degree is in Organ and Harpsichord Performance from the University of Oregon, with additional focus on Piano Pedagogy.
Over the years Baird has participated in master classes and coaching with such artists as Harald Vogel, Jean Langlais, and Guy Bovet. Private instruction was with Michael Schneider, Hugo Ruf, Larry Palmer, Emmet Smith, John Hamilton, and Mark Brombaugh.
Baird taught at Texas Christian University, Southern Methodist University, and Northwest Christian College before coming to the University of Oregon. At Oregon, Baird is responsible for private instruction of all undergraduate and graduate organ and harpsichord students.
An active recitalist since 1971, Baird has performed throughout the United States as well as Europe, Argentina, Brazil, and Australia. In 1984-85 she presented a series of nine all-Bach organ and harpsichord recitals in Eugene in honor of the Bach Tercentenary, and in 1993 she did a two-week organ tour of Germany. In 1995 she was the only American invited to participate in the International Swiss Organ Festival. In January 1999 Baird was the featured organ and harpsichord soloist in the Ballarat Goldfields Music Festival in Australia. Her organ recital received the first standing ovation ever given at this festival. She was invited to return to the Ballarat Festival in January 2001 and again in January 2005.
A frequent adjudicator and clinician, she regularly conducts workshops and master classes for keyboardists, particularly on Baroque and Classic Period Performance Practice. Baird has been a presenter and/or recitalist at local, regional and national American Guild of Organists Conventions, as well as for the Organ Historical Society, and piano teacher’s guilds in the United States and Australia.