Tabernacle Organist Retires After Twenty-six Years of Service

    “Tabernacle Organist Retires After Twenty-six Years of Service,” Ensign, Aug. 1991, 77

    Tabernacle Organist Retires After Twenty-six Years of Service

    The First Presidency has announced the retirement of Robert Cundick, organist at the Salt Lake Tabernacle, effective 1 December 1991.

    Born in Salt Lake City, Brother Cundick was called as an organist in his ward at the age of twelve. He studied organ under the late Alexander Schreiner, also a Tabernacle organist, and he studied composition under Leroy Robertson. He received his Ph.D. in composition from the University of Utah and taught at both the University of Utah and Brigham Young University.

    Brother Cundick performed as a recitalist in the United States and Europe. His oratorio, The Redeemer, based on scriptural text, has been performed in the Tabernacle and elsewhere in the United States.

    From 1963 to 1965, Brother Cundick and his family lived in England, where Brother Cundick served as organist at the Hyde Park chapel. It was from there that he was called as Tabernacle organist twenty-six years ago. Upon receiving the offer, he says, “My dream came true.” He had appeared as a guest performer previously and was thrilled with the full-time assignment.

    “It’s been a wonderful blessing to be able to serve the Lord doing the thing I love the most—making music,” Brother Cundick comments. As one of three full-time Tabernacle organists, he has been deeply involved in the Church’s music program, including regular organ recitals at Temple Square and accompanying the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

    “I’ve just gone from one day to the next having wonderful experiences,” reflects Brother Cundick. Missionary experiences rank high on his list of memorable moments, whether performing one-on-one for heads of state or for small groups of tourists.

    Upon his retirement, Brother Cundick and his wife, Charlotte Clark Cundick, will serve as hosts at the BYU Jerusalem Center.

    Robert Cundick at the console of the Tabernacle organ.