Simon Earl is the Director of Music, Organist and Master of the Choristers at Christchurch Priory, a position he has held since February 2015. His principal responsibility at the Priory is the training, recruiting and developing the choirs of Boys, Girls and Adults. As Musical Director of the bi-annual, 8-day Christchurch Priory Music and Arts Festival, he has organised and conducted ambitious programmes of events including the Schumann Piano Concerto, a celebration of the Last Night of the Proms and Haydn’s Creation. In 2016 Simon established the Christchurch Festival Chorus, which most recently performed Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast under his baton in the 2018 Priory Music Festival.
Brought up and educated in Surrey, he received his formative musical training as a chorister and later Assistant Organist at his local parish church, whilst receiving organ lessons from John Belcher. He held Organ Scholarships at Southwell Minster (2005/06), Newcastle Cathedral (2006-2009), Guildford Cathedral (2009/10) and St John’s College, Durham (2008/09), and read for a degree in Music at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, continuing organ studies with David Sanger.
Between 2011 and 2015 he was Assistant Director of Music at Wakefield Cathedral, where he accompanied the weekly cycle of services, and toured, broadcast and recorded regularly with the Cathedral Choirs.
Simon maintains a busy recital schedule, is an examiner for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, and is regularly invited to lead and accompany choral events in the UK and abroad.