Organ Recitals at St John's usually take place on Sundays at 6pm, prior to Evensong at 6:30pm.
When attending recitals, we would be grateful if you could take note of the Chapel Covid-19 precautions, which are available here.
You can read more about our current Organ Scholars below, and if you are interested in becoming an Organ Scholar, further information is available here.
A programme of recitals for this term is available below:
Current Organ Scholars
George is the Herbert Howells Organ Scholar at St John’s. Following two years as a Music student, George is now in his final year studying German. Born in Manchester in 2001, his passion for music was kindled in earnest when he started singing in Manchester Cathedral Choir aged nine.
He joined Chetham’s School of Music at this time too, where he studied trumpet after leaving the cathedral’s choir. During this time, formative experiences included playing in a fanfare brass group alongside the Gabrieli Consort in their recording An English Coronation, involvement with the school’s orchestras and big bands, and participation in music therapy and community music projects. He focused on organ and singing in his time in the school’s Sixth Form, and returned to Manchester Cathedral as Organ Scholar. He played Poulenc’s Organ Concerto with Chetham’s Chamber Orchestra, and enjoyed working closely with his peers as an accompanist.
He now studies organ with Colin Walsh and piano with Keval Shah. In his first two years he was a pianist in Pembroke College’s Lieder Scheme, where he participated in masterclasses with accompanist Joseph Middleton. He has been the co-musical director of the Gentlemen of St John’s since his second year.
George is a passionate environmentalist, and is studying for a dissertation on environmental policy and foreign relations in Cold War East Germany. An article he wrote arguing for more sustainable musical touring practices was published by Varsity newspaper last year.
Alex joins us at St John’s after a year spent as Organ Scholar at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. Although much of his year in Windsor was affected by lockdowns, Alex worked regularly with the choir probationers, as well as occasionally accompanying and directing the choir. In January 2021, he was awarded his FRCO (playing) under the tutelage of Ann Elise Smoot.
Alex’s first experiences of choral music were as a chorister at King's College, Cambridge. He started playing the organ at the age of 14, at St Lawrence Church, Seal Chart, where he remained Organist for four years. During this time he gained the highest marks in the country for his playing in the ARCO examination, while studying with Robin Walker. When he was 16 years old, he founded The Tudeley Singers, and has since conducted them in services at several different cathedrals (including Westminster Abbey, where he was the youngest person ever to conduct a service). He has also organised and directed a number of concerts with the choir, which have included works by Fauré, Duruflé and Britten.
Heavily involved with local music, Alex was associated with over a dozen amateur ensembles during his time in Kent, including as Manager of The Lydian Orchestra. A firm believer in the positive impact music can have on society, Alex has raised over £7,000 for various charities through his music making, and has worked with several local primary schools to inspire musicians of the future.