Meet Dr. Wanda R. Griffiths

Dr. Wanda Griffiths

Dr. Wanda R. Griffiths
Affiliate Faculty in Music

B.A., Bethany College
M.M., University of Southern California
Ph.D., Claremont Graduate University

Courses Taught: Music Theory, Music History

Biography: Dr. Wanda Griffiths joined Trinity Lutheran College in 2011 as Affiliate Faculty in Music. She teaches Music Theory and Music History. 

As an educator, Dr. Griffiths has taught at California State University Los Angeles, Eureka College (Eureka, Illinois), and the University of Washington (Seattle). She has led national workshops on assorted aspects of Music and Worship. She has a special interest in Worship and the Arts, and was a founding member of the Worship and the Arts Task Force for the Pacific Southwest Region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). She has most recently been teaching in the Institute for Spirituality and the Arts (Edmonds, WA), and also maintains a private studio where she teaches piano and organ.

Dr. Griffiths has served as Music Director and Organist for a number of churches, including Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, United Church of Christ, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), and Seventh-day Adventist congregations. In 1999, she made all the arrangements for and led her choir from Bellevue Christian Church along with the choir from Faith Lutheran Church in Bellingham, Washington, on a twelve day Choir Tour through southern Germany and Austria. While there they performed a benefit concert in Munich for refugees from Kosovo. She is currently Interim Director of Music & Arts and Principal Organist at Edmonds United Methodist Church (Edmonds, WA) and Minister of Music at the Green Lake Church of Seventh-day Adventists (Seattle, WA).

As a performer, Dr. Griffiths has played numerous solo organ recitals on the west coast and in the Midwest. She has appeared as Guest Organist with the Tucson Masterworks Chorale in Tucson, Arizona, and in recital on the Glatter-Götz/Rosales organ at the Claremont United Church of Christ in Claremont, California.  She has been performing as part of a duo-organ team since 2002 with her colleague Stephen Marshall-Ward, presenting concerts around the Pacific Northwest and in Southern California.  They were recently the featured performers in concert for the Northwest Regional Convention of the American Guild of Organists. In addition, she has appeared in concert with the Seattle Girls Choir, the Kirkland Choral Society, and the Claremont Chorale.

Dr. Griffiths holds a Bachelors degree in Music Education and Organ Performance from Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kansas, a Masters Degree in Organ Performance from USC, where she studied with Ladd Thomas, and a Ph.D. in Musicology from Claremont Graduate University.   

Dr Griffiths’ dissertation focused on the tragédie lyrique (French Baroque Opera), and especially on the tragédie lyrique Céphale et Procris, which wascomposed by Elisabeth Jacquet de La Guerre and performed at the Paris Opéra in 1694. Dr. Griffiths served as a consultant for Ars femina’s performance of Céphale et Procris in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1994, and her edition of Céphale et Procris was published by A-R Editions in 1998.  Other publications include articles in the Festschrift Music in Performance and Society: Essays in Honor of Roland Jackson, in the journal Performance Practice Review, an article in Cahiers de l’Atelier Lyrique de Tourcoing for Jean Claude Malgoire’s production of Céphale et Procris in Tourcoing, France in 1989, and articles in Worship and the Arts (Nos. 4 and 5; 1988).

In her doctoral studies, Dr. Griffiths completed the requirements for a minor in Religion. Her courses for this minor included “Women and the New Testament,” taught by Bernadette Brooten, “Introduction to the New Testament” taught by Vincent Wimbush, and courses on Worship and the Arts taught by W. Jack Coogan.  Dr. Griffiths is especially interested in feminist Biblical scholarship and theology and is interested in performing and promoting music by women composers.

Dr. Griffiths has been a program annotator for the Organ Recital Series sponsored by the Seattle Symphony, and is a Past Dean of the Seattle Chapter of the American Guild of Organists.  She is a member of the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians and the American Guild of Organists.