Saturday, November 21, 2009

Organ Recital by Nic Chalmers

St Cecilia’s Day 22 November 2009

Nicholas Chalmers – Organist and Director of Music, St. Jude-on-the-Hill

Pi├Ęce d’Orgue (BWV 572) J. S. Bach

Larghetto from Organ Concerto in F major G. F. Handel

Sonata in C minor, Op. 65, No. 2 F. Mendelssohn
Grave, Adagio, Allegro maestoso e vivace, Fuga- Allegro moderato

Suite from ‘Henry V’ W. Walton (arr. Robert Gower)
March, Passacaglia, Touch her soft lips and part, March

Symphony No.5 in F minor, Op. 42 C. M. Widor
Allegro vivace, Adagio and Toccata

Nicholas Chalmers is the Assistant Chorus Master of English National Opera, and Musical Director of Second Movement (a London based music and drama production company). He directs the music at St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb. From 2003 until July 2008, Nicholas was the Director of Music at Westminster Abbey Choir School and Musical Director of the Bromley Youth Choirs.

Nicholas began his musical training as a chorister at Tewkesbury Abbey. After a year as Organ Scholar at Chichester Cathedral, Nicholas studied music at Oxford University where he was Organ Scholar of Lincoln College and conductor of the Oxford University Chamber Choir.

After graduating, Nicholas moved to the organ scholarship at St Paul's Cathedral where he spent a year working under John Scott, teaching in the Cathedral School, was Musical Director of the Yateley Choral Society and Head of Chapel Music at Forest school, east London. In August 2001, Nicholas moved to Lodi, Northern Italy, where he spent a year working with the choir of the cathedral and studying with the harpsichordist, Laura Bertani, at the Piacenza Conservatoire. He returned to London in 2002, and for six months was the assistant organist of Westminster Abbey.

From 2007-2008 Nicholas was the choral conducting scholar of the London Symphony Chorus. Nicholas has directed two productions as musical director of Hand Made Opera; Le Nozze di Figaro (2002) and Il Barbiere di Siviglia (2003). For Second Movement he has directed Mozart and Salieri (October 2004) and Trouble in Tahiti (June 2005) The Medium and Impresario (January 2006) to wide critical acclaim and directed their triple bill of Les Deux Aveugles, Rothschild’s Violin and The Knife’s Tears at the Covent Garden Film Studios (May 2007). With Chelsea Opera Group Nicholas has been chorus master for Beatrice di Tenda (March 2007), Maria Stuarda (November 2007) and Macbeth (March 2008). In addition to his work at ENO, Nicholas works regularly with the BBC Singers and leads numerous choral workshops throughout the UK.

Listen out for Nic conducting the BBC Singers live on ‘The Choir’ –Radio 3 at 6pm on Sunday, 6th December and live on Radio 3 Lunchtime concert at 2pm on Wednesday, 16th December.

The Organ

Built by Henry "Father" Willis (one of England’s most distinguished organ builders) the organ in St Jude’s was originally installed in St Jude’s Whitechapel in 1899. It was moved to St Jude’s in Hampstead Garden Suburb when the Whitechapel church was demolished. Originally installed at the west end of the church on a gallery, it was subsequently moved to its present position on the north and south sides of the choir. It underwent a major restoration in 1935 by Hill Norman & Beard. A further comprehensive restoration and refurbishment was completed in October 2002. David Wells Organ Builders of Liverpool undertook the complete overhaul and refurbishment of the organ. The work included a new drawstop console to replace the previous "theatre organ" style console.