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1929 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
HAYASHI, Yuko International concert artist and professor of organ at New England Conservatory, Boston, died of natural causes on January 7, 2018 under hospice care at The Residence at Salem Woods, Salem, NH. She was 88. Yuko Hayashi was born in Hiratsuka, Japan on November 2, 1929. For more than 40 years she was professor of organ at the New England Conservatory and department chair for 30 years. The organ department closed shortly after her retirement in 2001. As a performer, she concertized extensively on three continents – Asia, North America, and Europe, giving recitals and masterclasses in Japan, South Korea, the United States of America, Holland, Germany, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. She was the recipient of the coveted Arion Award from the Cambridge Society for Early Music as an "outstanding performer and master teacher of the historical organ". She was also awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award from the New England Conservatory. Ms. Hayashi graduated with a degree in organ performance from Tokyo University of the Arts in 1948 and for five years was organist for the symphony orchestra of NHK, the Japanese national broadcasting company. She came to the United States in 1953 on scholarship and studied at the New England Conservatory in Boston where she was awarded three degrees in organ performance: Bachelor of Music, Master of Music, and Artist Diploma. In 1960 she began teaching at the conservatory, and was appointed chair of the department in 1969 by then president Gunther Schuller. Her primary teachers were George Faxon, Donald Willing, Anton Heiller, and Gustav Leonhardt (harpsichord). Her frequent travels to Europe and Japan began in 1966 resulting in many life-long associations with concert organists and organ builders across both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. In 1971 she was appointed organist at Old West Church in Boston, performing on a new mechanical action organ built by Charles B. Fisk. Ms. Hayashi was the Founder and Executive Director of the Old West Organ Society which brought concert artists and students from all over the world for concerts, masterclasses, and summer organ academies. From 1989-1995, Yuko Hayashi took a leave of absence from the New England Conservatory to accept a position as professor of organ at Ferris University, Yokohama. She became Titular Organist at St. Luke's International Hospital Chapel and was responsible for transporting a historic 1889 organ built by the Boston organ building firm of Hook & Hastings to St. Andrew's Episcopal Cathedral in Yokohama where her father served as Anglican priest for many years. Two brothers, Makoto Hayashi and Satoru Hayashi, and several nieces and nephews survive Yuko Hayashi, all residing in Japan. Over her career, she has taught over 500 students and leaves a lasting legacy through them. A memorial service for Yuko Hayashi will be held at Christ Church, Andover, Mass. on Saturday, April 28 at 11:00 a.m.

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Published in The Boston Globe on Jan. 19, 2018
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