Since beginning his musical training at age ten, Raymond Hawkins has honed his skill at the organ through an active career in both solo performance and sacred music. As a performer, Raymond has given recitals at venues across the United States, including the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption in San Francisco and Adolphus Busch Hall at Harvard University. His performance at the 2015 Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina was praised in The American Organist as being “superbly played and registered.”
Raymond currently serves as Director of Music and Organist at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Marblehead, Massachusetts, the oldest Episcopal Church in New England still standing on its original site (1714). There, he oversees choral and organ music for weekly Mass, monthly Evensong, and a variety of other occasions. Raymond began his career in church music at the age of fourteen as organist at the First Baptist Church of Holly Hill, South Carolina. While studying in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, he served as music intern at Augsburg Lutheran Church and subsequently as organist at St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church. Raymond also serves as Member-at-Large and Newsletter Editor for the Merrimack Valley Chapter of the American Guild of Organists.
Raymond has also won prizes in a number of regional and national competitions. As a high school junior, he received First Prize and the Hymn-Playing Prize in the 2014 UNCSA/Salem College High School Organ Competition as well as Third Place and the Hymn-Playing Prize in the American Guild of Organists Greater Columbia Chapter Young Organist Competition; the following year he earned Second Place in the same competition. In 2014, he won Second Place in the Senior Division of the Peter Perret Youth Talent Search and consequently performed with the Winston-Salem Symphony Orchestra.
In 2019, Raymond completed his undergraduate degree in organ performance at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, where he studied as a Kenan Organ Scholar under Dr. Timothy Olsen and had previously received his high school diploma. Earlier on, he studied organ with Donna Swanson, Angela Kraft Cross, and Porter Remington. Raymond has also studied abroad in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and the Netherlands, advancing his skills as both musician and language aficionado. In his free time, he enjoys cooking, gardening, and swimming with his wife, Casey.