Marilyn Keiser is Chancellor’s Professor of Music Emeritus at Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University, Bloomington, where she taught for 25 years. Prior to her appointment at Indiana University, Dr. Keiser was Organist and Director of Music at All Souls Parish in Asheville, North Carolina and Music Consultant for the Episcopal Diocese of Western North Carolina.
A native of Springfield, Illinois, Marilyn Keiser earned her Bachelor of Sacred Music degree from Illinois Wesleyan University, and her Master and Doctor of Sacred Music degrees from the School of Sacred Music at Union Theological Seminary.
Upon graduation with her master’s degree, Marilyn Keiser became Assistant Organist of The Riverside Church in New York City, and one year later was appointed Associate Organist and Choirmaster of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, a position she held from 1966 to 1970.
A virtuoso concert organist, Marilyn Keiser has performed across the United States and in Brazil, China, England, France, and Singapore. She has given lectures and workshops in church music for all the major denominations, specializing in music for small churches.
Marilyn Keiser has been heard in performance on radio broadcasts on National Public Radio stations throughout the U.S. and has recorded for Loft Recordings (Music of Paris in the 1920s and 1930s) and Pro Organo (The People Respond-Amen, Spiritual Pairs, Studies in Relief and In Praise of the Organ: Latin Choral and Organ Music of Zoltan Kodaly). She has also recorded Seasons of Festivity at Fairmount Presbyterian Church in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, Centennial Flourish at St. James’ Church in Hendersonville, North Carolina, and The Music of Dan Locklair at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Indianapolis, Indiana.
For the American Guild of Organists, Dr. Keiser has been a member of the national council, served as national Registrar, was a member of the national nominating committee and Dean of the Western North Carolina chapter. She holds the Associate, Choirmaster and Fellowship degrees from the Guild, and was awarded the Guild’s Distinguished Artist Award in 2013.
Dr. Keiser has been awarded honorary doctorates from the Virginia Theological Seminary, Illinois Wesleyan University, and from the Yale Divinity School. She has also received the Unitas Citation from Union Theological Seminary, Illinois Wesleyan University’s Outstanding Young Alumni Award, and a Teaching Excellence Recognition Award from the Indiana University School of Music where she was named Chancellor’s Professor in 2002.