St Bride's: Music - Lunchtime Recitals

Michael Strange - organ

Friday, 30 October at 1:15pm - FREE ADMITTANCE - Retiring Collection

Michael Strange - organ

Bach
      Prelude and Fugue in C, BWV 547

Gibbs
      From Six Sketches (1953)
          Lyric melody
          Elegy
          Quiet Thoughts
          Folk Song

Michael Strange
      Triumphal March


Michael Strange was born in 1961 and educated at King Edward's School, Birmingham, and Manchester University. His earliest musical experience was playing the signature tune from Z Cars on the piano at the age of five. He started learning the violin at eight, piano at nine and organ at fourteen.

His first organ teacher was John Pryer, then the assistant at Birmingham Cathedral, and he later studied with George Miles (who had studied in Germany and was one of the first organists in the country to be influenced by the Orgelbegewung movement). Subsequent teachers have included Keith Elcombe, Derrick Cantrell and Anne Marsden Thomas. He has played in masterclasses with a number of well-known teachers including Peter Hurford and Jacques van Oortmerssen.

His first church appointment was at Harborne Methodist Church (Birmingham) in 1977, where there was a fine small instrument by Forster and Andrews. He has subsequently held posts at All Saints West Dulwich, St Margaret's Lee, St John's Wood Church and (currently) St Matthew's Croydon. He became an Associate of the Royal College of Organists in 1984 and a Fellow in 2013.

He regularly performs with various choirs and ensembles in the London area as organist, pianist or harpsichord continuo player. He is accompanist of the New Gloriana Choir which sings in cathedrals around the South of England, and plays the harpsichord with ensembles such as Belsize Baroque and Linden Baroque.

His first piece, a carol, was written in 1986 and since then he has composed a number of carols, anthems, liturgical works and organ pieces. In 2014 he won the Harvest of the Sea anthem competition held by the church of St Mary-at-Hill in the City of London with a setting of Never Weather-Beaten Sail for unaccompanied choir. It was first performed at the Fish Harvest Service at that church in October 2014 and has also been performed by Camden Chamber Choir.