"Dr. Dorothy" started piano with her mother at age four, changed to the organ at 16 and became a protégé of Mildred Andrews at The University of Oklahoma. At 20 she won the American Guild of Organists National Competition in 1952 and studied in France with Marcel Dupré who recommended her as "...an excellent and perfect musician with a brilliant technique."
In Paris she was guest organist at the American Church, Ave George V, and later served two years as organist-choirmaster at The American Church, Rome, Italy. She received a scholarship to Yale University Graduate Music School and performed her Masters Recital at Woolsey Hall.
A series of life-changing events, including the death of her beloved father, Roy Wallace Young (1875-1959), a concert violinist, led her into medicine and she earned a Doctor of Medicine degree from The University of Oklahoma School of Medicine at age 38. After practicing Internal Medicine in Pasadena for 30 years, she retired to Las Vegas and resumed serious organ playing.
To celebrate her 77th birthday, she performed a recital on the Allen Renaissance Organ (III/80/2001) at First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Las Vegas Nevada, May 17, 2009, dedicated to her father. She selected two of his favorite violin pieces, Kreisler "Liebesfreud" and Paganini "24th Violin Caprice", and arranged them for the organ. Also on the program was the world premiere of his composition "Canzonetta" from "First Symphony" composed when she was six years old.
Dr. Riess is noted for her musicality and interpretation, a legacy from her father.