The American Guild of Organists (AGO) is the national professional association serving the organ and choral music fields. The Guild serves approximately 20,000 members in 330 chapters throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

Founded in 1896 as both an educational and service organization, the Guild seeks to set and maintain high musical standards and to promote understanding and appreciation of all aspects of organ and choral music.
Under the leadership of the National Council, a network of volunteer committees and officials at the regional, district, and local levels directs the activities of the Guild. The AGO National Headquarters is in New York City where a full time staff supports and coordinates publication, administration, and development activities of the organization. For purposes of administration and representation, the Guild is divided into nine geographical regions, and each chapter is assigned to one of them.

For a Directory of our current Board of Directors, and to contact any of them, Click Here

About Us

The purposes of the American Guild of Organists are:

  1. To advance the cause of organ and choral music, to increase their contributions to aesthetic and religious experiences, and to promote their understanding, appreciation, and enjoyment.
  2. To improve the proficiency of organists and choral conductors. 
  3. To evaluate, by examination, attainments in organ playing, choral techniques, conducting, and the theory and general knowledge of music, and to grant certificates to those who pass such examinations at specified levels of attainment. 
  4. To provide members with opportunities to meet for discussion of professional topics, and to pursue such other activities as contribute to the fulfillment of the purposes of the Guild.

Guild sponsored activities include a series of examinations for professional certification as well as programs and an extensive list of publications, audiocassettes and learning resources for all levels of interest. The Guild sponsors competitions in organ performance and improvisation and in organ and choral composition.

National and Regional conventions are held in alternate years, and present the finest performers, workshops for personal improvement and opportunities for professional networking.  Members are encouraged to attend these gatherings whenever possible.

THE AMERICAN ORGANIST magazine, published monthly by the AGO, is the most widely read journal devoted to organ and choral music in the world.  All members receive a copy either in print or on-line.

The Detroit Chapter conducts examinations for the various professional degrees offered by the AGO.  The Detroit Chapter also conducts an annual Scholarship Competition.  If you are a student and wish to apply for the Scholarship, please refer to the Examinations/Scholarship page of this website.

Code of Ethics and Professional Standards
Members of the American Guild of Organists agree to abide by a set of ethics and standards that foster a good interaction of professional musicians and the myriad of employment situations to which these members are parties.  As such, it has issued a Code of Ethics, a Code of Professional Standards, and a Policy Against Harassment as well as other policies.  These can be read and downloaded from the national website at .

This document was last
updated on:  Wednesday, December 29, 2021 1:53 PM
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Mission Statement:

The purpose of the American Guild of Organists is to promote the organ in its historic and evolving roles, to encourage excellence in the performance of organ and choral music, and to provide a forum for mutual support, inspiration, education, and certification of Guild members.

Time to Renew?

The new AGO year began July 1.   Renewals are now being handled through AGO National's "ONCARD" (Online Collection and Remittance of Dues) system).  By clicking HERE, you will be able to access ONCARD to pay your dues by credit card. ONCARD screens are secured with the https protocol.