Tom Winpenny is Assistant Master of the Music at St Albans Cathedral, the former monastic abbey north of London which is the oldest site of continuous Christian worship in England.
His duties at the cathedral include accompanying the daily choral services and directing its acclaimed girls’ choir. Previously, he was Sub-Organist at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, and during this time he performed with the Cathedral Choir at the American Guild of Organists National Convention, performed in Mahler’s Symphony no. 8 with Valery Gergiev and the LSO, and played for many great state occasions. He has also broadcast regularly on BBC Radio and been featured on American Public Media’s Pipedreams.
He began organ lessons under John Scott Whiteley while a chorister at York Minster, and continued as a Music Scholar at Eton College under Alastair Sampson. He subsequently studied with Thomas Trotter and Johannes Geffert, and won First Prize and the Audience Prize at the 2008 Miami International Organ Competition.
Earlier in his career he held was for three years Organ Scholar at King’s College, Cambridge, where he graduated with a degree in music. With the Choir of King’s College, he gave concerts in the USA, Hong Kong and throughout Europe, in addition to appearing as their accompanist on CD releases on EMI Classics.
His many solo organ recordings include works by Malcolm Williamson and John Joubert (Toccata Classics) and music by Lennox & Michael Berkeley, John McCabe and Charles Villiers Stanford (Resonus Classics). For Naxos he has recorded music by Judith Bingham and four volumes of the organ works of Olivier Messiaen, including Les Corps Glorieux – awarded five stars by the French magazine Diapason) – and Livre d’Orgue, which recently achieved Choir & Organ magazine’s editorial ‘star review’. He directs St Albans Abbey Girls Choir in recordings of choral works by Mendelssohn and William Mathias, also on Naxos.
He has taken part in the first performance of works by Judith Weir, Alec Roth, Judith Bingham, Carl Rütti, Jonathan Dove, Cecilia McDowall, Francis Grier and Francis Pott. Recent engagements include recitals in Hildesheim Cathedral, Chichester Cathedral, Trinity Cathedral (Phoenix) and St Mark’s Cathedral (Minneapolis). He has also featured as organ soloist in John Rutter’s Christmas Celebration concerts at the Royal Albert Hall.
He is a member of the Trustee Council of the Royal College of Organists, and is much in demand as a choral director and as a teacher. He has given organ masterclasses at Baylor and Rice Universities and he is Musical Director of the London Pro Arte Choir. Forthcoming solo concerts include recitals at Grace Cathedral (San Francisco), and Linköping Cathedral (Sweden).
“Tom Winpenny displayed his sensitive musicianship over and over again both as soloist and impeccable choir accompanist.”… “a stylish, virtuoso performance”
“Tom Winpenny…creates, stimulatingly, an atmosphere of rapt attention [...] through his sense of how to match pace […] to the acoustic.”
“Winpenny has hit the jackpot to my mind with a wonderfully varied assortment of repertoire, fully exploring the wonderful sounds of the 1962 Harrison whilst showing off his fabulous playing”
“Once again, Winpenny delivers a fine performance and lets Messiaen’s intensely personal expression of faith speak through the music without getting in the way.”