On Wednesday 22nd March 2023 we welcome Louise Reid from Durham to the Cathedral for our next organ recital of 2023. In this edition of ‘Notes from an Organist’ we discover more about working for the BBC, playing music in ancient buildings, and making a return to West Yorkshire.
Could you introduce yourself, how you got into music / became an organist and your musical journey to where you are today?
I had huge encouragement from my parents. My father was a Methodist Minister and needed someone to play the hymns, so my sister and I both played as teenagers. I was also inspired by the late Catherine Ennis, who I first met on an RSCM organists’ course at Addington Palace. From there I went on to Oxford and the Royal Academy of music where I was also privileged to hold the organ scholarship at Westminster Abbey.
What can people expect from your recital at Bradford Cathedral?
Hopefully some exciting performances of interesting repertoire – nothing boring!
Why do you enjoy playing the organ?
I enjoy making music in my own space. It can be very exhilarating to play a grand organ in an ancient and inspiring building.
Do you have a particular favourite piece out of those you are playing?
The Bach/Vivaldi has been a long-term favourite, but I am also keen to commend the Rousseau Scherzo to you as a delightful and humorous work that is seldom played.
This recital season we are celebrating music written by female composers. Which piece(s) have you selected, and why did you choose it / them?
I have chosen a the ‘Four Musical Clocks’ composed by my sister, Joanna Marsh, which are a modern take on the Pieces for Musical Clocks transcribed by Haydn. They are essentially short descriptive pieces, based on some well-known children’s literature.
You were previously a musical director at the BBC. What was that like?
Amazing! It was an early start in the morning, but everyone was very cheerful. I enjoyed working with professionals and also the excitement of live broadcasting.
You’ve played the organ across the world; what were your favourite places out of those you’ve played?
St George’s Cathedral, Jerusalem was very special.
Finally, how would you sum up your upcoming recital at Bradford Cathedral?
I am looking forward to returning to West Yorkshire, having been assistant at Wakefield some years ago. And I am hoping to bring some lively enjoyment to music-lovers on their Wednesday lunchtime!
You can join us on Wednesday 22nd March at 1pm for Louise Reid’s organ recital, with an optional £4 buffet lunch beforehand at 12:30pm.
You can discover more about our organ recital season on our dedicated page