Rachel Mahon is Assistant Director of Music at Coventry Cathedral in the UK, where she accompanies and conducts the Cathedral Choir and curates the organ recitals. Prior to this, she was Assistant Organist at Chester Cathedral (UK). Rachel was Organ Scholar at St Paul's Cathedral in London, England from 2014-2016 - the first woman organist on staff in its 1400-year history.
She combines life as a Cathedral musician with a busy international recital schedule. Recent engagements include an opening concert for the Montreal Symphony; Royal Canadian College of Organists' National Convention 2016; Orgelsommer Festivals 2016 & 2017, St Michaelis Church, Lueneburg, Germany; Temple Church, London, UK; St Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, New York City; Christ Church Cathedral, Victoria, BC; Pro Organo, Ottawa, ON; Westminster United Church, Winnipeg; The Toronto Bach Festival 2018; Haderslev Cathedral, Denmark; Trinity College, Cambridge; and St Lawrence Jewry, London. She was also an instructor for the RCCO's inaugural Summer Organ Academy in 2019.
Rachel holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Organ Performance from the University of Toronto, where she studied with Professor John Tuttle and she is currently studying with Henry Fairs. In 2014, she was named one of the top 30 musicians under 30 in Canada by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Her debut solo album, a venture funded by the Canada Council for the Arts, will be released in February 2020 on the Delphian label. To learn more or for booking enquiries, please visit rachelmahon.co.uk.
Sarah Svendsen has performed in Europe, the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada. In September of 2016, Sarah made her symphonic debut as soloist with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, for which her playing was reviewed to be “greatly virtuosic” by Chronicler musical, La Liberté. Some of Sarah’s other engagements have included the St Paul’s Cathedral Sunday Organ Recital Series (U.K.), and the Copenhagen International Organ Festival (Denmark). Sarah has recorded for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and was the organ soloist in an ensemble of over 1000 for the Luminato Festival production and CBC Radio 2 broadcast of Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer’s Apocalypsis.
Sarah is an avid supporter of organ education and is an adjudicator and organ instructor. She served as a Traveling Clinician for the RCCO in 2018/19 and was an instructor for the 2019 RCCO National Summer Organ Academy. Sarah is the Artistic Consultant to the RCCO’s annual Summer Organ Academy for which she designs the academic structure. Sarah serves on the RCCO’s National Strategic Planning Committee.
Sarah is currently pursuing a DMA in Organ Performance at her alma mater, the University of Toronto, under Dr. Patricia Wright. Her research concentrates on the understanding and prevention of organists' musculoskeletal injuries. Sarah holds a Master’s degree in organ from the Yale School of Music where she studied with Professor Thomas Murray. This degree was in conjunction with the Yale Institute of Sacred Music where she completed the Institute’s Church Music Diploma. Sarah was born and raised in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, Canada. To learn more or for booking inquiries, please go to sarahsvendsen.com.
Rachel Mahon and Sarah Svendsen formed the duo when they were at University of Toronto, where they both completed music degrees. Their shows are a mix of comedy and music and include a combination of classic organ repertoire and and popular music transcribed and arranged for the instrument. The goal of this duo is to entertain audiences with their music and antics (which involve costume changes, dazzling shoes and hot tempers) and to promote the organ to a wider audience of all ages. With this purpose in mind, Organized Crime Duo's performances are unlike any other organ concert - they must be seen as well as heard - and appeal to everyone, from the organ aficionado to one completely unfamiliar with the pipes.
ORGANIZED CRIME DUO is a comedic act whose shows uniquely combine organ playing with physical comedy. The original shows are co-written by Rachel and Sarah and involve skits, costume changes, props and all genres of music. The pair embody larger-than-life characters in their stage act, during which, they interact with the audience as much as possible and have been known to incorporate various dance/gymnastic moves while they play organ.