Dr. Jack W. Jones, Minister of Music
Dr. Jones has served as Organist-Director of Music for The Royal Poinciana Chapel since 1989. He is also the Founder of The Masterworks Chorus of the Palm Beaches.
Dr. Jones began playing piano at age 5, becoming church pianist at age 10, and organist of The First Baptist Church of Daytona Beach at age 17. He continued as organist at First Baptist Church following his graduation from Mainland Senior High School until completion of the Bachelor of Music degree from Stetson University in Deland, Florida. At Stetson, his organ professor was Paul Jenkins. For his Master of Sacred Music degree, he entered the prestigious School of Sacred Music at Union Theological Seminary in New York City. His professors included Alec Wyton (organ), Searle Wright (improvisation), Joseph Goodman (composition), Sergius Kagan (vocal interpretation), and Madeline Marshall (English diction). After serving as Organist and Director of the Choir and Orchestra at Mercer University in Macon Georgia, Jack moved to Columbus, Georgia where he was the Organist-Choirmaster at The First Baptist Church and taught at Columbus College.
By an invitation from Alec Wyton, Organist-Master of the Choristers at Cathedral of St. John the Divine, he returned to New York City to become the Associate Organist-Choirmaster at the Cathedral and received a scholarship to study for his Doctor of Musical Arts degree at The Juilliard School. Jack was privileged to study with Anthony Newman (organ), Abraham Kaplan (conducting), Roger Sessions, Vincent Persichetti, and Vladimir Ussachevsky (composition), Susan Bloch (advanced harmony), and Gustav Reese (musicology). He also served as Teaching Assistant to Dr. Reese.
From 1973-1989, Dr. Jones’ positions included: Post Chapel Organist-Director of Musical Activities at The United States Military Academy at West Point, teaching positions at Florida Atlantic University, Palm Beach Atlantic University, Palm Beach Community College, Southern California Conservatory of Music, Organist for First Baptist Church in West Palm Beach, and Organist-Director of Music for First United Methodist Church in West Palm Beach. In addition to his church and teaching positions, Dr. Jones has used his musical talents as Chorus Master of Palm Beach Opera, Artistic Director of The Gilbert & Sullivan Light Opera Society (17 years), and Music Director at The Stage Company, Florida Repertory Theatre, Burt Reynolds Dinner Theatre, Sculpture Theatre, and BRITT (Burt Reynolds Institute for Theatre Training). He was also Founder and Director of Teen Musical Theatre (7 years).
A sensitive and supportive accompanist, Jack is in demand for many local and international singers and choral groups including The Bel Canto Singers, Malcolm Arnold, Victoria Atwater, Ceci Grasso Dadisman, Judy Davis, Joseph Evans, Adria Firestone, Demetra George, Susanne Ishee, Marty Marshall, Lloyd Mims, Marilyn Mims, Dean Peterson, Bruce Reed, and Sir John van Kesteren.
Recordings of Dr. Jones include “Of Time and Eternity,” a cantata by Mary Caldwell (Broadman), “Epitaph for This World and Time” (Composers Records), “Divine Hair” (RCA), and a solo organ CD entitled “Jack Jones in Concert.” He has also been the accompanist for a number of recordings by the vocal artists listed above.
Dr. Jones is active in the American Guild of Organists having served as Dean of the Palm Beach Chapter for four terms, as well as being Vice President and Scholarship Chairman of the Federation Music Club of the Palm Beaches. He is listed in the Who’s Who in American Music, Entertainment, and in the Southeast. He has had organ and piano compositions published by Concordia Press, Shawnee Press, and Warner Brothers. Jack was recently honored by the Palm Beach County Cultural Council as a 2008 Clyde Fyfe Muse Award finalist.