News for Members and Followers

RTOS E-mail List

The Rochester Theater Organ Society has launched an e-mailing service.  The goal is to provide monthly reminders of RTOS events and activities.  To join the mailing list, you must register your e-mail address.  A website page has been created to allow you to register. 

Read about and sign-up for e-mail list by selecting the button to the right.  

Missed an event? Visit the Photo Gallery using button to the right.

West Herr Performing Arts Center’s COVID Policy

The theatre’s air filtration system has been upgraded to MERV 13 filters in the HVAC system, along with some special filters designed to deal with airborne pathogens. Enhanced cleaning and sanitizing measures are in place. Hand sanitizer is available throughout the lobby.

Proof of vaccination is not required for entry. While still highly encouraged, masks are optional when attending events at the West Herr Performing Arts Center. We appreciate the support, patience, and cooperation of our patrons as policies and procedures have evolved. If you are not feeling well on the day of your performance, we ask you to please stay home.

The RTOS Open Console schedule has been posted on the Events Open Console page. Click on button to right to view page.

RTOS Accomplishments 2023

  •  We offered 7 concerts in 2023: 
    • February 5th – David Marsh, March 5th – Ron Rhode, April 2nd – Eastman Bunch and Brett Miller, April 23rd – Simon Gledhill, May 27th – Tedde Gibson, October 15th – John Lauter, December 10th – Tim Schramm.
  • Bob Bower and Russ Shaner contracted artists with unique themes for each concert which greatly improved our advertising ability and gave us the information we needed when suggesting programs of interest to new people.
  • Publicity Chair Gary Brumbaugh actively pursued new publicity opportunities.  He created informative Facebook.com posts several times a month.  He created concert advertising posters several months in advance to post on the RTOS website and to distribute to RTOS members. Gary also followed up on referrals to set up presentations.
  •  Chris Van Stean, Gary Brumbaugh, and Tim Wagner presented the program “Rochester’s Best Kept Secret: Unveiling the Mighty Wurlitzer” for 11 professional and community groups with attendance ranging from 4 to 80.  Audiences included library patrons, historical society members, recreation center program attendees, and a group of retired professionals.
  • RTOS members have provided information, recommendations, and contacts for presentation proposals:  David Gaudieri for Retired Professionals Society, Lisa Wemett for area libraries and Perinton Historical Society, and Tim Wagner for Perinton Historical Society.  Those referrals resulted in more referrals to additional venues.
  • Gary Brumbaugh worked with Danielle Henning at RBTL to include RTOS banner ads for upcoming concerts in the monthly email blasts to RBTL patrons.  He also updated the poster board in the lower level of the Auditorium Theatre.
  • Richard Neidich created email addresses in the rtosonine.org domain for key contacts within RTOS (e.g., president@rtosonline.org) for a more professional appearance than using personal email accounts.  The email addresses and email history will be under RTOS control and will be easily transferrable as roles change in the future.
  • Richard Neidich regularly updated the website with upcoming events, artist biographies and concert posters.  Richard and Gary Brumbaugh provided website analytics data to understand where website visitors are coming from and what they are looking for.
  • Richard Neidich created a new PayPal account under RTOS control and linked to treasurer@rtosonline.org, thus eliminating dependence on a legacy personal account.
  • The new Preservation Committee including Richard Neidich, Chris Van Stean, Gary Brumbaugh, Tim Wagner, Greg Spring, and Bob Bower has started building an inventory of RTOS documents, historical papers, photos, and memorabilia.  The goal is to consolidate and provide access to RTOS’ “history” in an organized way and to share the materials in a controlled way.                           
  • David Peckham has made continuous improvements to the temperament and regulation of the organ. It presently sounds the best it has in many years.
  • The Board is in the process of creating the 2024 goals and a worksheet to specific objectives and measures of accomplishment.  Chris Van Stean is leading this effort and building the worksheet.
  • Gary Brumbaugh created an RTOS magnet and a separate cardstock 2023-2024 season schedule with help from Russ Shaner.  This allows us to cost effectively distribute schedule updates to members.  The schedule will also be handed out at presentations.
  • Brett Miller presented a program on the Eisenhart Auditorium Wurlitzer 3/12 theatre organ on March 3rd for over 200 students from the Genesee Community Charter SchoolKevin Scott set up the organ and piano for the demonstration.  Chris Van Stean and Gary Brumbaugh supported the program answering questions and providing RTOS informational brochures and complimentary concert passes to parents.
  • Gary Brumbaugh created a graphic displaying concert attendance numbers and events showing a steady increase in concert attendance.
  • RBTL gave us theatre dates for the entire 2023 – 2024 season so we can advertise well in advance.
  • The Board collected original documents.  Bob Hunter requested replacements for missing originals.  All-important originals and copies were placed in a safe deposit box at a local bank.
  • Bob Hunter and Chris Van Stean visited several banks and negotiated higher returns on RTOS savings accounts and CDs. 
  • Gary Brumbaugh created a pre-concert slideshow for each concert with important information for RTOS members and first-time attendees.
  • Richard Neidich provided video recordings and photos for each Eastman Bunch XIV performer, which was greatly appreciated by Prof. Porter and the performing students.
  • RTOS provided a tuition scholarship to local student Joseph Pechenik to attend the ATOS Summer Adventure Camp using money from Paul Law’s bequest.
  • We held an Ice Cream Social at the May concert at the Eisenhart Auditorium.  Although the intermission was longer than planned, it provided a great opportunity for members to meet and interact with each other!
  • Bob Bower continues to post RTOS concert videos on the RTOS YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/@Wurlitzer1951, with artist permission.
  • Bob Bower was named Chairman of the 2026 ATOS convention.  Chris Van Stean agreed to be Co-Chair.
  • A committee including Chris Van Stean, Bob Bower, and Richard Neidich was created to plan the RTOS 60th Anniversary celebration in October 2024.
  • Wheelchair assistance from the parking lot into the Auditorium and back was provided for concert attendees by Beth Haag and Chris Haag, who have continued to bravely face the freezing Rochester temperatures.
  • Brett Miller organized a unique and highly entertaining second half of the Eastman Bunch XIV concert in April which featured Gavin Rice and his Concert Jazz Ensemble.

2022-09-14 RTOS Blower News Regarding Organ Maintenance