Organ Stop Pizza announced yesterday, December 25, that it added a new organist to its regular playing schedule.
On January 1, 2020, Brent Valiant from Wichita, Kansas, will be stepping behind the east Valley restaurant's Mighty Wurlitzer organ, which only a few people can play due to the complexities of the unique instrument (it has over 6,000 pipes, for starters). He will be joining Lew Williams to play everything from classical music to show tunes at 1149 East Southern Avenue in Mesa.
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Valiant started playing the organ at the age of 4 and began his professional career at 11 years old. He's played around the world as well as the American Film Institute, and the conventions of the American Theatre Organ Society and the American Guild of Organists.
“Brett has been a key substitute here for more than a decade and is known as a top talent in the theater organ world,” says Brad Bishop, co-owner of Organ Stop Pizza, in a statement. “We are very confident Brett will continue the tradition of excellence in entertainment that our customers have come to expect at Organ Stop.”
This news comes after the nearly five-decade-old restaurant's beloved Charlie Balogh died last month due to a stroke. There will be a tribute all-you-can-eat lunch buffet to help the organist's family raise funds for medical expenses on Saturday, January 18, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. In addition to Valiant and Williams, musicians Donna Parker, Ron Rhode, Jonas Nordwall, Jelani Eddington, and Ken Double will take the stage. Check out the details here.