Organ Recital - John Challenger

This Organ Recital will be given by John Challenger of Salisbury Cathedral.  John has been Assistant Director of Music at Salisbury Cathedral since 2012, where he was appointed at the age of 23. A Fellow of the Royal College of Organists, he was taught the organ by Frédéric Blanc, David Briggs, Jeremy Filsell, Mark Williams, and the late David Sanger.

In 2015 he released his début solo CD on the organ of Salisbury Cathedral, featuring transcriptions of orchestral works by Edward Elgar. The recording was awarded five stars by Choir & Organ Magazine, and received enthusiastic reviews in the American Record Review, Hi-Fi Plus, Organists’ Review, and on Classic FM, while Cathedral Music Magazine commented that ‘it would be difficult to imagine a more auspicious début CD’. In early 2017, he acted as Director of Music of St John’s College, Cambridge (where he had been Organ Scholar), during the sabbatical of the College’s Director of Music, Andrew Nethsingha. During this period the world-famous choir’s performances were praised in Gramophone Magazine and the choir broadcast on BBC Radio 3.

Recent engagements have included directing Salisbury Musical Society and Salisbury Symphony Orchestra in Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle, and appearing as organist for ‘Organ Vespers’—a sequence of organ cycles by Olivier Messiaen, performed in new liturgical contexts at Salisbury Cathedral. His second solo CD, of organ works by César Franck, is due for release in the summer of 2019.


Pomp and Circumstance IV
Edward Elgar (1857–1934)

 Prelude and Fugue in C BWV 547
J.S. Bach (1685–1750)

 Dance in the Twilight
Eric Coates (1886–1957)

 Clair de Lune
Louis Vierne (1870–1937)

 Crown Imperial March
William Walton (1902–1983)

Truro Cathedral has one of the finest organs in the country. Built by Father Willis specifically to fit the acoustic of the building, its range, depth and power are truly awe-inspiring. The weekly Friday lunchtime series runs from March to October and each recital lasts around 50 minutes. These are completely free to attend - donations to support the cathedral's music are appreciated.