Music

St Mary's has a distinguished team of musicians led by the Director of Music, Paul Brough, supported by the Organist, Richard Hills.

The principal act of worship on Sundays and on Solemn Feast Days is a traditional High Mass (a form of the interim rite) but with significant concessions to Vatican II and using the BCP readings. It seeks to achieve spiritual excellence by combining carefully thought out and well honed ceremonial with appropriately fitting music, combining traditional liturgical plainsong with settings of the mass, anthems and motets from a wide range of composers, from all musical periods.

The music staff attach vital importance to the integration of music and liturgy, with the former being emphatically the servant of the latter. To this end the selection and presentation of choral and organ music is undertaken with strict adherence to the celebration and lection of the day, together with the appropriate chant.

Much experience has been gleaned by the music staff over the years in shrine and parish churches, cathedrals and collegiate institutions. The autonomy afforded by this experience as expressed at St Mary's is greatly valued. This relationship is expressed joyfully in friendship with the congregation, and music of high quality is seen as a powerful binding force in this Eucharistic community.

Music Staff

Director of Music: Paul Brough
Previous Directors of Music:
     2009-14 David Trendell
     2000-09 William Whitehead
     1978-00 Shane Fletcher
     1968-78 Conrad Lewis
     1949-68 Bob Strong
     1903-49 George Underwood

Organist: Richard Hills
Previous Organists:
     2001-07 Andrew MacMillan
     1998-00 William Whitehead
     1995-98 James Thomas
     1987-95 Philip Berg
     1978-87 Michael Bowden

Choir:
     Margaret Feaviour, Louisa Green (soprano)
     Mhairi Ellis, Rebekah Jones (alto)
     David Marchese, Mark Bushby (tenor)
     Graham Kirk, Paul Grier (bass)

Additionally the parish has a music fund that supports an Organ Scholar, usually appointed for one year, which provides the opportunity for a young musician to have free practice on an excellent organ while learning the business of Catholic church music within the mass, especially the accompaniment of plainsong. The fine organ was built by Henry Willis & Sons in 1928 and underwent major restoration in 2005/6.

Organ Scholar: Nicholas Tall (starts September 2018)
Previous Organ Scholars:
     2016-18 Sebastian Gillot
     2015-16 Jack Stone
     2014-15 Sit. vac.
     2013-14 Christopher Woodward

Sebastian Gillot at the organ of St Mary's