Wellington-born organist Thomas Gaynor is returning to New Zealand for a series of recitals and will play in Whanganui on August 24.

Gaynor is rapidly making his mark as an international concert organist and was recently described as playing with "complete poise and vitality" by Organ Australia magazine.

The New Zealand recitals form part of an international tour taking in Ireland, Finland, Germany, France, and Australia.

Gaynor was winner of the first and audience prizes in the 2017 St Albans International Organ Competition, and was awarded first prizes in the Third International Bach-Liszt Organ Competition in Erfurt/Weimar, Germany, the Sydney International Organ Competition and the Fort Wayne National Organ Playing competition, as well as being second prize winner in the Miami International Organ Competition.

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He is a doctoral student in David Higgs's studio at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, where he was recently awarded the highly coveted artist's certificate – an honour the institution had not given an organist for nearly three decades.

Gaynor will play a programme of Bach, Mendelssohn, and Widor at 7.30pm on Friday, August 24 at Christ Church Anglican Church, 243 Wicksteed St. Admission $25, organ friends $20. Children and students free.