Father Seán Brett Duggan, O.S.B., attended Loyola University in New Orleans and received a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance and a Master of Fine Arts degree at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. He graduated summa cum laude with a Master of Arts degree in Theology from Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans and was ordained to the priesthood. In September 1983, Father Duggan won first prize in the Johann Sebastian Bach International Competition for pianists in Washington, D.C., which entitled him, among other honors, to give various concerts around the country and a two-month tour of Germany. In the “Bach Year,” 1985, he gave complete performances of The Well-Tempered Clavier in New Orleans, Pittsburgh, and Birmingham to critical acclaim. In 1991 he participated again in the Bach Competition in Washington, D.C.; this time he was one of three first-place winners, which entitled him to another round of concert engagements and a second tour of Germany. Throughout the year 2000, the 250th anniversary of Bach’s death, Father Duggan performed the complete cycle of the composer’s keyboard works eight times in a series of fifteen recitals entitled “Bach On the Threshold of Hope.”
Father Duggan, currently on the piano faculty at the State University of New York at Fredonia, is in the midst of recording the complete (non-organ) keyboard works of Bach for commercial release.