About Thomas Trotter: Celebrating 40 years as Birmingham City Organist

Bach:Fantasia & Fugue in G minor, BWV 542

Schumann:Study in A flat

Cheryl Frances-Hoad: Celebration Fantasia: Rhapsody on the name of Thomas Trotter (world premiere)

Wagner (arr. Lemare):Overture to Rienzi

Liszt:Fantasia & Fugue on the chorale ‘Ad nos, ad salutarem undam’

“One of the greatest players of this, or any, age” declared Choir and Organ magazine of Thomas Trotter. Awarded The Queen’s Medal for Music 2020, he is among the world’s most celebrated organists and has elevated the tradition of the virtuoso organist to new heights.

As Birmingham City Organist since 1983 – only the seventh post-holder since 1834 – he has had a major influence on Birmingham’s musical life, and this concert celebrates a remarkable 40th anniversary with a typically captivating programme. There’s Baroque brilliance in Bach’s ‘Great’ Fantasia and Fugue; fiendish difficulty for both hands and feet in Edwin Lemare’s transcription of Wagner’s 'Rienzi Overture'; and Liszt’s 'Fantasy and Fugue', based on music from Meyerbeer’s opera 'Le prophète', which made an emphatic case for the organist as a concert performer, not solely a church musician.

In 40 years, Trotter has commissioned many exciting new works (you can hear some of them in his lunchtime concert series). Expect a suitably celebratory piece from Cheryl Frances-Hoad whose music, says the American Record Guide, is “melodic, passionate, equal parts humour and reverence”.

Her 'Celebration Fantasia' marks this special occasion by picking out 10 great Birmingham moments from the past 40 years, from the opening of Selfridges to the inauguration of the Symphony Hall Organ.

Thomas Trotter is an Associate Artist of B:Music

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Getting here

  • Symphony Hall
    Broad Street
    B1 2EA
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