The Bach Choir celebrates John Rutter's 70th Birthday
Ahead of our celebration concert on 5th November, we're taking a look at John Rutter's life, achievements, and his relationship with The Bach Choir.
John Rutter studied music at Clare College, Cambridge, and wrote his first published compositions and conducted his first recording while still a student there. From 1975 to 1979 he returned to Clare College, Cambridge as Director of Music; after giving up the Clare post to allow more time for composition, he formed the Cambridge Singers as a professional chamber choir primarily dedicated to recording, and he now divides his time between composition and conducting.
His compositional career has embraced both large and small-scale choral works, orchestral and instrumental pieces, a piano concerto, two children’s operas, music for television, and specialist writing for such groups as the Philip Jones Brass Ensemble and the King’s Singers.
John has a long association with The Bach Choir which began in the 1950s when he attended our Christmas concerts and annual performances of St. Matthew Passion as a boy. His work with the late Sir David Willcocks, the Choir’s Musical Director from 1960-1998, is well-known, and this led to the inclusion of many of his carols in our Christmas repertoire. In 2006 he was appointed Vice President of the Choir and he succeeded the late Leopold de Rothschild as President in 2013. The Choir regularly performs and records his works and looks forward to performing The Gift of Life: Six Canticles of Creation on 5th November in St. Paul's Cathedral with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.