Bristol Festival of Music, Speech & Drama 2016



Organ Sections


Sat, 3 March 2018

St. Augustine's Chapel, St. Monica Trust, Cote Lane, Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol BS9 3UN

Section Rules:

As per General Rules, plus:

1 Teachers, Parents and performers are advised carefully to check the RULES at the beginning of this syllabus and read the following notes. 2 Age for classes to be reckoned from 1st September of the year prior to the Festival. 3 A copy of music should be available for the adjudicator before performing which must be neatly presented and of good quality. (see Festival Rule No 14). Not necessary for Class O5: Masterclass. 4 Time limits must be strictly adhered to (see Festival Rule No 6).


General Organ Classes >

St. Augustine's Chapel, with its warm & generous acoustics, houses an important organ. The three manual instrument is a vintage, late (1895) 'Father' Willis, recently restored to its original condition. It has three non-adjustable pistons to each division, no 'general' pistons & responsive pneumatic action. The choir division is enclosed.


Henry Fairs BMus (Hons), FRCO, Prix d'Excellence, Konzertexamen, Hon BC

Henry Fairs is Head of Organ Studies at Birmingham Conservatoire, Organist to the University of Birmingham and Honorary Professor of Organ at the University of St Andrews. He has won ten prizes in international organ competitions, including the Prix Maurice Durufle, Chartres; Concerto Gold Medal, Paris; First Prize & Special Prize, Odense.

Henry has appeared in festivals throughout Europe and in North America, Canada, Russia and Japan, performing solo recitals, broadcasts (BBC, BR, MDR, Danish Radio) and concertos on both historic and modern instruments. He is regularly invited to serve as a jury member (Odense and Wadden Sea competitions, Denmark; Silbermann Wettbewerb, Germany), examiner, guest tutor and speaker. His students include a number of prize-winners in international competitions.

Born in Hereford in 1976, Henry received his earliest musical training as a chorister at Leominster Priory and studied at the Birmingham Conservatoire, where he graduated with First Class Honours and was a prize-winner at the Fellowship diploma of the Royal College of Organists. A scholarship from the Countess of Munster Trust enabled postgraduate studies in Paris, Cologne and Vienna. Important teachers and influences have included David Saint, Susan Landale, Thierry Mechler, David Sanger and Michael Radulescu. He enjoys playing and teaching a broad, eclectic repertory: currently with a strong focus on the organ output of JS Bach (in a project involving research and performance of the organ works) and the chorale fantasias of Max Reger. In addition, he has in recent years been occupied with the performance of 19th- and 20th-century music, including complete performances of organ music by Jehan Alain (2011), Liszt (the three great works -2011), Reubke, Olivier Messiaen (2008) and Maurice Durufle ( Naxos 8.557924).

Henry was closely involved with the recent installation of the landmark new organ at the University of Birmingham and will be responsible for commissioning a number of new instruments at Birmingham Conservatoire's new home over the coming years.

"Fairs emerges as a top-notch performer. His registrations, tempos, and sensitivity to subtle nuances in phrasing and articulation are superb." American Record Guide

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