Based in Vienna, Austria, the Canadian organist Craig Frederick Humber was born in Corner Brook, Newfoundland and studied Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics at Sir Wilfred Grenfell College of Memorial University of Newfoundland. He twice attained their top prize for excellence in Physics before transferring to Acadia University, from which he graduated in 1998. During his studies he was a student of Professor Clarence Ledbetter and Fernando Germani.
From October 1999 to January 2005, Craig trained under Professor Arvid Gast at the esteemed Hochschule für Musik und Theater “Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy” in the Bach city, Leipzig, Germany, graduating in organ performance (also majoring in piano and harpsichord) and obtaining the Hochschule’s title “Diplomorganist.” In addition, he studied choral conducting and improvisation under Martin Schmeding, and vocal technique. In 2007, he completed his terminal degree in performance in Europe, the Aufbaustudium at the Musikhochschule in Lübeck, Germany, and post-graduate studies in organ under Professor Michael Radulescu at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, and in harpsichord under Gordon Murray.
Mr Humber’s awards and distinctions include the Celanese Canada Internationalists Fellowship, the John Goss Memorial Scholarship from the Royal Canadian College of Organists, and five consecutive study grants from the Fulford Trust of the Anglican Foundation of Canada. He is a three-time recipient of the revered Canada Council for the Arts Grant. In 2002, he earned substantial assistance to investigate the Baroque organs of Gottfried Silbermann, Wagner, and Hildebrandt in Saxony. In 2004, he received another grant to study the Romantic organs of Wilhelm Sauer and Friedrich Ladegast, and won the J.B.C. Watkins special prize in music awarded by the Canada Council for the Arts. Craig Humber won the first Godfrey Hewitt Memorial Scholarship Competition, the largest scholarship awarded by the Royal Canadian College of Organists (Ottawa branch), and was laureate of the Thyll-Dürr Swiss scholarship performance competition at the University of Vienna two consecutive years.
Mr Humber has been featured on live broadcasts by the CBC and German radio including Deutschland Radio from Berlin, and has appeared twice in the Brandenburgische Sommerkonzerte series in Brandenburg, Germany. In 2003, he held an assistantship on the Hildebrandt organ (Bach organ from 1746) in Naumburg, Germany. He was three times coordinator for organ studies at the Leipzig-Julliard Summer Academy. Being the first North American prize-winner of the prestigious Gottfried Silbermann Organ Competition—held bi-annually in Freiberg, Germany—Craig Humber concertizes regularly on historic organs (Baroque and Romantic) in Germany, Austria, Holland and Canada.
From 2006 to 2010 Mr Humber lectured on Musical Form and Structural Analysis at the Franz Schubert Conservatory of Music in Vienna. In May 2010 his CD Johann Sebastian Bach: The Leipzig Chorales was released. This double-CD, recorded using SACD technique, shows the richness of sound of the Silbermann organ in St Petri Freiberg (Saxony/Germany). Since 2017 he has been director of music and organist at the Votivkirche Vienna, where he is responsible for one of the world’s best-preserved organs by E. F. Walcker.