meet the performers
Emily Bruflat, organ and Ben Bruflat, trumpet
Emily Bruflat grew up in Wayne, Nebraska and attended Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, graduating first in class with a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education in 2010. Piano was her major instrument, but she also studied the organ with Masako Nakamura Bacon and played for an American Guild of Organists (AGO) student recital.
She then moved to Saint Paul, Minnesota, where she attended Luther Seminary and completed a Master of Sacred Music degree in 2012, studying primarily with Paul Westermeyer. Through the seminary’s dual program with St. Olaf College, she studied organ with Catherine Rodland and took other church music and conducting coursework with many instructors including John Ferguson, Anton Armstrong, David Cherwien, and Susan Palo Cherwien. She has played trombone in bands and jazz bands, and she sang as a soprano in the National Lutheran Choir under David Cherwien’s direction for two years.
Emily spent nearly five years serving at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Bayport, Minnesota as Director of Worship and Music. In 2015, she moved to Saint Peter, Minnesota to serve at First Lutheran Church as Cantor. At FLC, Emily enjoys playing the organ and piano, directing musical ensembles, designing special festivals and worship services, and composing music for worship. She is active in the Saint Peter community by serving on the City Council and helping at the Food Shelf, and she holds membership in the Sioux Trails AGO Chapter and the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians.
Ben Bruflat is an active performer with the Tuscaloosa (AL) Symphony Orchestra, the Starkville (MS) Symphony Orchestra, the Starkville Symphony Brass Quintet, and the Mississippi State Faculty Brass Quintet. He has also performed with the Danville (IN) Symphony Orchestra, the Sioux City (IA) Municipal Band, and for various cover bands and weddings. Ben was a featured soloist at the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association annual conference with the Wayne State College Wind Ensemble and at the Midwest Trumpet Festival. He is also a two-time quarterfinalist in the ensembles division of the National Trumpet Competition. In addition to his performance career, Ben maintains an active teaching studio. Currently he is Adjunct Professor of Trumpet at Faulkner University and he serves as the graduate teaching assistant for the trumpet studio at the University of Alabama. Ben has also taught at Eastern Illinois UniversityBen received his Bachelor of Arts degree in K-12 Vocal/Instrumental Music Education from Wayne State College in 2016. He graduated with a Master of Arts degree in Trumpet Performance from Eastern Illinois University in 2018. Currently, Ben is studying for a Doctor of Music Arts degree at the University of Alabama with an expected graduation date of Spring 2021. His primary trumpet instructors are Dr. David Bohnert, Dr. Joshua Thompson, Dr. Andrew Cheetham, and Dr. Eric Yates.
The Hendrickson opus 45 pipe organ at First Lutheran is a tracker instrument of 30 stops, 44 ranks, and 2019 pipes. Dedicated in 1980 by French organist Marie-Claire Alain, it is a good example of many of the principles of the organ revival movement in the 20th century. Its three divisions (Great, Swell, and Pedal) are easily visible in the facade, the stop list features a rich vertical plenum and diverse tonal elements, and the high and narrow case allows all sounds to project into the room. Visually interesting, the wooden pipe shades suggest "birds of the air," which are mirrored in the brick reredos on the opposite side of the nave.