Music at GMC
2017 Summer Organ Recitals
During August and September 2017 we held our fourteenth series of Sunday afternoon Organ Recitals by Local Organists.
Florence Rousseau was born in Cherbourg and studied music at Rouen University and Conservatoire, where she later obtained a first prize for advanced organ studies. She graduated in 1998 with a highly commended Diploma National d’Etudes Supérieures Musicales. She is now organist at Rennes Cathedral and regularly gives recitals in France in addition to her concert work in Germany, England, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
Loïc Georgeault studied organ at Lyons Conservatoire and is currently organist at Rennes and St. Malo Cathedrals. He divides his time between teaching organ and improvisation at St. Malo Conservatoire, and concert work in France, Germany, England, the Netherlands, Poland, Switzerland and Japan.
Claudia Grinnell recently graduated with a first-class degree in Music from the University of Cambridge. Whilst at Cambridge, she was Organ Scholar at Peterhouse,
a college with no Director of Music where the organ scholars take full responsibility for the running of the Chapel Choir. There she led the choir on tours to
Reykjavik and Dublin. Prior to this she was Organ Scholar at St Peter’s Collegiate Church, Wolverhampton.
Simon Clarkson was born in Lancashire and attended Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School, Blackburn. He was awarded an Entrance Scholarship to read for a degree in Music at Edinburgh University, where he studied with the composers Kenneth Leighton and Edward Harper, and musicologist Michael Tilmouth. At this time he also became Organ Scholar of St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, accompanying its choir in daily services, concerts, broadcasts and tours abroad. In 1985 he was a Finalist in the National Young Organist of the Year competition, held in Bolton Town Hall.
By the time he graduated he had become a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists, and gained an ARCM performer’s diploma along with six prizes at the RCO. As the first winner of the university’s Anderson Organ Prize, he was able to travel to Paris and Caen for a period of further organ study.
Since 1987 he has pursued a varied career as a teacher (including periods as Director of Music at St Lawrence College, Ramsgate, and at Giggleswick School) and as a soloist and accompanist on both the piano and organ. He became an examiner for ABRSM in 1999, and continues in this role alongside his work as Head of Academic Music and Organist at Sherborne Girls. He regularly contributes to the weekly recital series in Sherborne Abbey, as well as playing with several ensembles in the South West.
When not performing, teaching or examining music he remains active as a composer and arranger – and has even been heard on Radio 3!
Neil Sissons studied organ with Richard Popplewell at The Royal College of Music, afterwards gaining an organ scholarship to Oxford University, where he read
music. He has worked in many different areas as a musician, accompanying, repetiteuring, teaching and writing about music. He taught at The Guildhall School of Music and
Drama, The Sylvia Young Stage School and in further education in London as well as playing and moved to Dorset in 1999.
He was organist at Milton Abbey before being appointed to St. Peter's Bournemouth in 2015.
Louise Cousins studied piano and organ with her grandfather, John Crawford, and later with David Mackay. From age 12 she played as regular organist at her local church in Kilmarnock and as deputy at a number of parishes throughout Ayrshire. After a break of 13 years and time spent in Spain, Nottingham and Ayr, a move to Gillingham, a chance encounter with concert organiser Gordon Amery led her back to the organ and she has been one of the musical team at GMC since 2006.