The Auckland Town Hall Organ Trust, in association with Auckland Live, presents a free concert in the Great Hall of the Auckland Town Hall on
Sunday 25 August 2019 at 2pm.
Benjamin Sheen is one of the world’s brightest young organists. He completed a Master of Music degree at the Juilliard School in New York, having studied with Grammy award winning organist Paul Jacobs. He currently resides in New York City, and combines a busy concert career with the position of Organist at St Thomas Church on Fifth Avenue.
Mr Sheen’s Sunday solo programme promises something for everyone.
The music will traverse three centuries from the famous Gigue fugue of Bach through to a Concert Fantasy on Themes by Gershwin written by a former teacher of Benjamin’s. In between will be well known music by Vierne and Debussy and contemporary pieces by Calvin Hampton and Judith Bingham. An arrangement of the ever popular Overture to Die Fledermaus which Benjamin has written will be a highlight of the programme.
Knowing our Town Hall Organ well, Benjamin has prepared a programme that will use every possible resource as he explores the colours of the Organ and you can be sure it will be a stunning recital.
Ben began his musical education as a chorister at St Paul’s Cathedral, where he took up the organ aged 10. In 2003, Ben became the youngest person ever to give a recital in the cathedral’s Sunday evening series at the age of just 13. Ben was awarded a music scholarship to Eton College where he studied organ with Alastair Sampson and David Goode. While at Eton, he gave several recitals across the UK, including Liverpool Cathedral, Westminster Abbey and York Minster as well as appearing a number of times in the Windsor Festival as a soloist. He toured the USA with the Eton College Choir and also presented a number of solo concerts in New York, Denver, Washington and at Princeton University.
For three years, Ben held the position of organ scholar at Christ Church Cathedral where he was responsible for daily service playing as well as conducting the renowned cathedral choir from time to time. While studying at Oxford, Ben combined his work as organ scholar in the cathedral with a busy solo career, which led him to numerous performances in cathedrals and concert halls across the UK and further afield in Australia and Germany. Recently, Ben has given several performances of his own transcription of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, as well as numerous concerto performances of the Guilmant organ concerto, and Poulenc’s Concerto for Organ, Timpani and Strings. Ben has made appearances on BBC Radio Oxford and BBC Radio 3 with Christ Church Cathedral Choir. He has also collaborated with leading orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under Nicholas Cleobury, and Duisburg Philharmonie with Jonathan Darlington.
As a pianist, Ben gave a performance of Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No 2 with the Eton College Symphony Orchestra. He is also a keen chamber musician, having performed piano trios by Mendelssohn, Faure and Brahms in concert.
Ben is a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists, winning the Limpus, Durrant and Frederick Shinn prizes and has been awarded the Worshipful Company of Musicians Silver Medal.
This concert is free and open to the public. Tickets are not required. Doors open at approximately 1:30pm. Concert begins at 2pm.