The Claude Lavoie Foundation was set up by the renowned organist and teacher Claude Lavoie, who provided the initial funding of $125,0000. The Foundation is a non-profit corporation created on February 16, 1989 under Part III of Quebec’s Companies Act.
The Foundation’s goal is to help train teachers and performers of organ music to a high professional level. More specifically, its founder gave it the mission of holding an organ competition for young organists.
The Foundation’s main achievement is the creation of the Québec Organ Competition, which is generally held every three years. The Competition is organized by the Competition Committee, which reports to the Board of Directors. The Committee’s mission is to set the program for the elimination and final rounds and to see to the material organization of both rounds.
Each round of the Competition is judged by a separate panel of judges. Candidates admitted to take part in the Competition must participate in the elimination round, for which they must submit a recording of a program of pieces that meets specific criteria of style and period. The panel of judges selects a maximum of five finalists. The final round takes place in public at the Saints-Martyrs-Canadiens church in Québec City, where Claude Lavoie was titular organist from 1959 to 1974. The church’s organ, Casavant’s Opus 2557 (1959), is a four manual and pedal instrument of 69 stops. The finalists are eligible to win prizes of up to $15,000 each.