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Head of Organ David Titterington MA, Hon DMus, Hon DUniv, Hon FRCO, Hon RAM Organ Scholar at Pembroke College, Oxford, and the Conservatoire de Rueil-Malmaison, Paris, with Marie-Claire Alain and Susan Landale (Premièr Prix à l’unanimité). Gives recitals and masterclasses world-wide and is a member of many international juries. Has premièred many important works and records extensively. Visiting Professor, Ferenc Liszt Academy, Budapest. In 2007, David Titterington was appointed Artistic Director of the International Organ Festival at St Albans.

The Academy’s comprehensive and specialist organ curriculum has a world- wide reputation. The course includes contemporary music seminars, improvisation, integration with Historical Performance studies, the history and repertoire of the organ and workshops by distinguished guest teachers such as Marie-Claire Alain, Kenneth Gilbert, Piet Kee, Kei Koito and Daniel Roth. In June 2002, a pioneering harmonium course began under the direction of Anne Page.

Students have regular access to organs in the ‘classical’ and 19th-century French symphonic traditions, the four-manual classical organ by Rieger in nearby St Marylebone Parish Church is part-owned by the Academy and used as its main teaching instrument, as well as a two-manual organ, after the great French builder Cavaillé-Coll, in the Duke’s Hall. A rare Neapolitan organ of 1763 by Michelangelo & Carlo Sanarica, restored in Italy by the renowned Riccardo Lorenzini, was inaugurated in spring 2004. In 2013 a new three-manual symphonic organ, built by Orgelbau Kuhn, will be installed in the Duke’s Hall.

Postgraduates follow a curriculum designed for their individual needs. Performance practice projects are supervised by specialists and frequently take the form of overseas visits where repertoire study is matched to a specific organ-building tradition.

The one-year Organ Foundation Course is designed primarily for ‘gap-year’ students preparing either for Oxbridge organ scholarships or for those wishing to develop their organ playing and choral direction skills to a high level before university or conservatoire studies.

‘Welte Restored’, a recording on the unique recently-restored organ at Salomons near Tunbridge Wells, was released in 2011. The release features automatic Orchestrion rolls, Philharmonic rolls recorded by famous organists of the day, and more conventional performances made by Academy students. It was prepared in collaboration with Canterbury Christ Church University and can be heard at

‘Grand Chorus’, a double-CD of 22 historic and important organs south of the Thames recorded in collaboration with the Southwark and South London Society of Organists, was released in 2006 and is documented at

The Teachers Clive Driskill-Smith MA, MPhil, FRCO, ARCM Nicolas Kynaston Hon RAM, Hon FRCO Susan Landale BMus, Hon ARAM, Hon FRCO Patrick Russill MA, Hon RAM, Hon FRCO

David Titterington MA, Hon DMus, Hon DUniv Hon FRCO, Hon RAM

Visiting Professors Jon Laukvik (Stuttgart Hochschule)

James O’Donnell KCSG, MA, FRCO, FRSCM, Hon RAM Lionel Rogg Hon DMus, Hon FRCO

Harmonium Anne Page BMus


William McVicker BA, PhD, LRAM, ARCO, Hon FIMIT, Hon ARAM

Improvisation Gerard Brooks MA, FRCO, PGCE

Aural Skills and Paperwork David Pettit MA, BMus, FRCO, Hon ARAM

LRAM (Art of Teaching) Anne Marsden Thomas BMus, FRCO, FRSCM, ARAM, Dip RAM, LRAM, ARCM

‘Politicians could do worse than pay a visit to the Royal Academy of Music’s department of organ studies to see how substantial change can be achieved… the august conservatoire knows a thing or two about instituting and managing change, not for change’s sake but for the advantages it offers to students. Even the super-hungry and obsessively curious among those selected to join the Academy’s annual intake of organ students are unlikely to be undernourished by the learning experiences developed by Titterington and his colleagues’ Choir and Organ, January 2008

‘This is music [Messiaen’s Livre d’orgue] in which every note needs to be precisely placed and every gesture made to count: requirements that were comfortably met by Ilya Kudryavtsev in this absorbing performance… Kudryavtsev saw it through as an unbroken whole: clearly the future for Messiaen’s organ music is an assured one with exponents of this calibre to perform it’ February 2008

Comments on the ‘Grand Chorus’ recording:

‘This recording project is a remarkable achievement, thoroughly recommended’ British Journal of Organ Studies 2006

‘The two CDs allow us to compare and contrast the myriad colours, characters and tonal qualities of these organs played by 19 performers, who have succeeded in bringing out the best of each instrument. The result is a wonderful musical achievement and a recording of major documentary significance’ Choir and Organ, January 2007

Recent Student Successes

Matthew Martin (2000) Assistant Master of Music, Westminster Cathedral

Stephen Grahl (2003) Director of Music, St Marylebone Parish Church; Assistant Organist, New College Oxford

Daniel Cook (2003) Assistant Director of Music, Salisbury Cathedral

Bart Jakubczak (2003) Organ teacher, Fryderyk Chopin University of Music Warsaw; Prix de la Presse, Lausanne International Bach Competition

Thomas Wilson (2006) Precentor, Westminster Cathedral; Director of Music, St Mary’s Cathedral Sydney (from 2010)

David Pipe (2007) Assistant Director of Music, York Minster

Department Administrator: Eileen-Rose McFadden Telephone 020 7873 7351 Email Open Day: check

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