organ builder, convention attendee

I didn't have an opportunity to greet you after your Meyerson performance and hymn sing last Tuesday at the OHS convention [joint convention of the Organ Historical Society and The Hymn Society in the U.S. and Canada]. For me, it was THE highlight of the week. Thank you for your fine musicianship and for your sensitive programming and registering of Opus 100 [the Meyerson Symphony Center's pipe organ, built by CB Fisk organ company].

David C. Pike, Executive Vice President and Tonal Director at CB Fisk

organ builder

I just wanted to let you know that I thought your Saint-Saëns today was just stunning!  Thank you so much!

CD purchaser

Thank you so much for the audio treat.  It is just finishing on my system, which is really intended for such fine performances that are well recorded. ... My listening notes are that this is a very well defined recording with excellent articulation of instruments and sections.  The organ is supportive of this and not overly dominant.  There is good balance.  The overall sound is clear and not as dark as some recordings of Saint-Saëns No. 3.  I will listen again and again.

organ builder

Thank you for being such a great ambassador for the organ, and for bringing your artistry to the community on our instrument.

organ technician

You really carry the mantle of John Obetz onward.  You perform beautifully, you are wonderfully articulate, you love to teach, AND you have a fine sense of humor.  Moreover, you perform on and protect his "babies" (The Auditorium, The Temple, and Helzberg Hall) ... a real heir to his legacy.

CD purchaser

I just got through listening to your cd of the Julia Kauffman organ.  All I can say is WOW! I think my favorite piece is the Gigout Grand Chouer Dialogue. That chorus of reeds on the G.C. is amazing!!

CD purchaser

After two months of your presence here, I finally got to sit down to write you this thank you note about your CD. I love it!

But I want to tell you why. First of course, the repertoire you chose. Out of question. Second, because you just play it… too well. But third, because the vitality with which you approach life is conveyed in the way you are playing the organ. This is not an easy thing to say, because the organ can be very “impersonal” sometimes, as it doesn’t have many of the nuances and dynamics that other instruments do, so you really need to communicate your own blood to the instrument. And then of course, after getting to know you better, I can just picture yourself on that fabulous instrument.

TV viewer

I just got to see your spot on Kansas City Live with Joel Nichols.  What great publicity!  I wish I had known, I would have taped it.  You two make a good act.


(via Facebook:)  Come join us for "Organ Extravaganza," it's a concert put on by Jan Kraybill. She is the most amazing organist I think I've EVER encountered. She is so captivating, you will not be disappointed.

CD purchaser

(via Facebook:)  Jan Kraybill...listening to your newest CD that arrived in the mail yesterday and mesmerized by your performances and amazing talent. What a gift to Kansas City and the music world you are!

worship congregation member

Just wanted to tell you how powerful your Postlude improvisation on the "hymn for the day" was yesterday.  It was masterfully crafted, yet fairly easy for the worshipper to follow some melodic relationship to the hymn which is so often lost on the casual listener. The registration matched the setting  beautifully and at the end I wanted to shout "Listen up, people!! Do you know what wonderful 'stuff'  you just heard?" I would hope that some day you would consider publishing a collection of your own.

CD purchaser

I just wanted to take time to thank you for such a wonderful recording of the Casavant at the Kauffman Center. I just finished listening to it and I really enjoyed it. Wonderful programming!! I loved the world premiere. 

CD purchaser

Thanks so much for the great CD.  It is really spectacular.  Your playing is stellar and the recorded sound is amazing.  I have listened to it numerous times.  What an artist!  What an instrument!

CD purchaser

I pre-ordered your “Organ Polychrome” CD ... It came this afternoon, and I played it right away. It is a wonderful CD, and congratulations on coming up with such a beautiful and magnificent CD. I also remember an old friend from your recital here - the Guilmant Caprice. And the Gigout - what a wonderful way to close out the recital. I have always loved that piece. Reference Recordings always does such a great job of engineering, and this was no exception.

I can’t wait until the Saint-Saëns comes out. As I recall without looking up your program bio, I think it was going to be early 2015. I will be watching for it!

concert presenter and colleague

Thanks to Jan Kraybill, Kansas City’s most enthusiastic ambassador for the Pipe Organ, there is an ever growing audience for organ concerts in our area. There will be ample opportunity the next few weeks to hear some of Kansas City’s finest instruments played by well informed and musical artists.

radio audience

What an ambassador! You are pure joy to listen to... even when you're "just" talking! :)

Don Clark (@Donaldopato)

Treating the neighbors to Organ Polychrome new @RefRecordings release with @jankraybill and the Kauffman Casavant organ. Bravo!

organ builder

I ... was delighted that your fan club is growing exponentially in Kansas City.  1,000 people for an organ recital is incredible in any part of the country, so I congratulate you for programming recitals that have, once again, captured an audience.

CD purchaser

I LOVE Organ Polychrome!! It is the perfect choice of music for the first recording on that new organ - wonderful! And the recording sounds just amazing. You cover every dynamic available, and I think every piece showcases at least one or more color stop - I especially like the solo reed on the Vierne Prelude. Plus it includes Piece Heroique by Franck - that piece was on the first organ album I ever had and I have just loved it since then - your performance on the CD of it is remarkable - lots of substance in the registration - deep and throaty in all the right spots - it sounds great on that organ, I hope you can include it on a performance there one day. And your program notes are great - lots of interesting tidbits, but not overdone, and your positive tone speaks so well from your role as conservator for this instrument. GREAT JOB! Thanks much for sharing this with all of us!


You should be highly commended for the fine program you planned and executed a couple of weeks ago. You succeeded in producing a wonderful tribute and memorial to the men who fought in WW1.

Also, I was thrilled with the way you performed my composition. You played it so beautifully and just the way I have envisioned it.

Thank you, Jan.

CD purchaser

I enjoyed all of your CDs, but most especially the one with the Reubke [Sonata on the 94th Psalm] on it. You sure nailed that baby. ... The "sehr dunkel" episodes were so effective!

The [Bach] Passacaglia was also compelling -- fine tempi, rhythm, and, alas, no precious articulations!  The Widor [Symphony No. 5] was great, although I am not a great fan of the piece.  You negotiated the rigors of the Sowerby [Symphony for Organ] most convincingly. All of your presentations were splendid. 

conductor collaborator

Just wanted to write a quick note to say thank you for a great performance last night!  It was an awesome experience to work with you.  Your musical sensitivity was commented on by many who I spoke with after the concert.  I especially appreciated your complete ability to follow ...


I just received word from UMKC that you have been honored as a Distinguished Alumni of the Conservatory for 2014 ... my most sincerest congrats. You have done so much for the Community of Christ, the city, the AGO and the nation and the world.  Too numerous to mention.

tour visitor

[My 8-year-old son] told me his favorite part of the whole week [vacation] was playing the organ with Jan!

hymn festival sponsor

Jan did an amazing job of accompanying each of the hymns with just the right stylistic accuracy and touch of humor!!

organ consulting client

Your wise words, calming spirit and good humor were enormously helpful to us during this organ project.  Your spoken and musical contributions were elegantly done.  Thank you so much.  What a day [inaugural recital and dedication].  There will never be another quite like it.

major donor

Heartiest congratulations upon your much deserved appointment as Curator of the Organ at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.

workshop attendee

The music workshop [weekend] at UF was excellent, and you were a large part of that!  Your enthusiasm for music, organ and hymnody is contagious.  You are so knowledgeable -- I was spell-bound and feel I learned so much.  Not only are you an outstanding clinician, but you are REAL!  You are down-to-earth and so genuine.  I feel as if I've known you for a long time! 

organbuilder audience member

... you are one of a very few performers that I want to listen to regardless of what songs you are playing. I attend a concert to listen to you. I consider myself to have a very critical ear for classical music and I have not been able to disagree with any of your interpretations of any style of music.  Probably the thing that makes your performances so exciting and enjoyable is your obvious passion for the music you play.

Pipedreams radio show listener

Since hearing the Pipedreams radio broadcast featuring you on the Auditorium organ a couple weeks back, I wanted to send you a quick note. What a thoroughly delightful program!! Your playing, like at the national convention in '08, was superb, and your clear and creative registration and handling of the organ is very compelling. It was also very good to hear your well-articulated story about your path to your current position - I'm sure, a great inspiration to those who aspire towards a goal. Surely, John Obetz left some large Organmasters to fill, but you clearly have things well in hand, and they are certainly fortunate to have you on staff.

Again, bravo, and thanks for your fine music, and for all of your good work for the AGO.

composer and YouTube listener

I happened across a YouTube video recently which featured you playing the first movement of the Widor Fifth Symphony at the Temple.  As I had not had the pleasure of hearing either the instrument or your playing, I took advantage of the opportunity to gain just a bit of exposure to both.  I must say that both left me deeply impressed.  Although the relatively poor quality of audio of most such posted videos is a disappointment, this one was surprisingly clear and gave a very favorable impression of the organ.  Your performance was well above the level of most renderings of this piece which I have heard, and as a composer myself I find this movement among the best of Widor's output as well as my personal favorite.  THanks for nice clean playing, very effective pacing, imaginative registrations and a superb musical sense of the piece!

staff organists

You make all of us on the organ staff so proud.  Your expertise as a performer is made rich with your musicianship and the spirit you bring.  Congratulations to the new Fellow of the AGO!

AGO Fellow certification judges' comments

Nice clarity ... very good rhythmic sense ... solid musical performance.

Excellent registrations, good rhythmic vitality and forward motion, showing the form and control of the more difficult passages ... You know what you're doing, clearly.

Dramatic use of time and silence as needed and indicated by the music.

Very good playing.  Solid execution of all the pieces, good stylistic knowledge, fine use of the organ, and all musically convincing.  Good.

fellow musician

I want to express my gratitude and appreciation to you for the astoundingly wonderful service you give to the Community of Christ as organist, and also for the sense of caring and support you extend to so many people, including me.  You are such an inspiration and a blessing to me and to thousands of others.  Thank you so much for being in this place at this time.

organ technician audience member

I hardly know where to start in congratulating and thanking you for your fabulous playing at St. Paul's in Des Moines.  That program was one of the very best things that that organ has experienced in its existence.  You used that instrument's colors so wonderfully and extensively.  Your familiarity with larger organs put you in the driver's seat with its tonal architecture.  Wow!  You MUST return!

Facebook fan

Hi Jan, I just listened to your cd tonight. It is MARVELOUS!!!!!! Congratulations!!!

organ builder audience member

Remembering your program at Wayzata, I am recalling your perfect use of the organ - idiomatic for each composer. The change from Bach to Vierne was particularly noticed with its very detectable change of sound and performance. I was pleased at how the organ did this for you - Harmonic Flutes after Bach is quite a change. The Sowerby Passacaglia was a wonderfully long crescendo from pppp to ffff. That magical opening of yours told everyone that we were in for a long and well-phrased build up. I think it must be rare that such super-soft old-fashioned voices can be found on a new tracker. They are out-of-favor, but I love 'em. Best wishes to you and thanks for your fine work at the convention.

AGO leader audience member

Congratulations again for your triumphal recital during the convention. There were two organists about whom I heard the most remarks, Cameron Carpenter and you. You were a big hit, and rightly so!

organ builder audience member

What a joy it was not only to hear your outstanding performance at the Obetz gathering, but also to see how much you enjoyed being a part of the event. Demonstrating and sharing the joy of playing the organ is as important as the performance itself. You are a gem of the organ world. Congratulations on your contribution to a wonderful day for the organ!

organ builder audience member

I did want to congratulate you on your participation in the program. You certainly accompany very well - but the highlight of the afternoon's festivities was your performance of the Jongen [Sonata eroïca]. It's a great piece that I don't get to hear very often. Your energetic playing was abundantly musical and technically flawless. Bravo!

Philip Ledger, conductor, Handel's Messiah

Thank you ... for your splendid playing at the performance. It is a great comfort for a conductor to have the continuo in such excellent and most imaginative hands.


I do want to congratulate you on a wonderful recital last Sunday - programming, performance, verbal utterances, etc. all superbly accomplished. You communicate so well with your audience, verbally and musically, and also generate much excitement in your playing.

Chen Yi, composer

I am the one who wants to say THANK YOU gratefully for all your hard work, your creation and your great performance. I am looking forward to the fine recording from you.