fbpx Barbara A. Flocco | Phillips Exeter Academy

Barbara A. Flocco

Instructor in Music
Barbara Flocco

"To my eyes and ears, the organ will ever be the king of instruments."  — Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Education

M.Ed. University of New Hampshire

B.S. West Chester University

Biography

From her very earliest recollections, Barbara was immersed in the “music of the spirit.” Surrounded by exuberant and soulful singing that came straight from the hearts of people of all ages united in both joyful and sorrowful song accompanied by the "king of instruments,” she was taken by the ability of music to transform and elevate lives.

From an early age, she eagerly began formal piano study, but the organ, an instrument of vastly expressive capabilities with timbres of every hue, held particular interest. Having frequently experienced firsthand the awesome power and intimate delicacy of the world famous Wanamaker organ in Philadelphia, she eagerly began formal organ studies at the age of twelve at the Swedenborger Cathedral in Philadelphia. Two years later, while her friends were babysitting, Barbara was playing services for vacationing organists throughout the Philadelphia area.  

Thus began a lifelong love and respect for this instrument that had the capacity to deliver inspiration, comfort and good cheer. The organ has been the perfect vehicle for collaborations both large and small with such luminaries as Alice Parker, Rene Clausen, Mark Hayes and Brock McElheren, to unite instrumentalists and singers alike. From the monumental Methuen organ to the St. Brides organ of London that was masterfully employed by Handel himself to accompany Messiah, Barbara has been privileged to perform both here and abroad. 

The vast organ repertoire spanning five centuries, is second to none and each organ installation has its own unique capabilities. Here at Exeter, our million-dollar Rufatti, dedicated by the class of 1972, has been lovingly installed in our breathtakingly beautiful chapel, the perfect instrument to lead and inspire our entire Exeter community in a space dedicated to connecting students, faculty and our community with the Almighty no matter one’s particular belief. No wonder the organ has been hailed as the "king of instruments."