Nigel Williams spent eleven years as a counter tenor and bass chorister at Holy Trinity Cathedral in Auckland, New Zealand where he developed an interest in composing organ and choral music. After graduating from the University of Auckland with a Master's Degree in composition he began a career as a music teacher. At the forefront of music education in New Zealand for almost 30 years he taught at a number of leading schools. He is currently Director of Music at Mill Hill School in North West London UK.
As Director of Music at St Paul's Collegiate School he established an international organ festival attracting musicians from around the world to play the school's Letourneau organ. During this period, as Director of Music at St Peter's Cathedral in Hamilton, he established choral scholarships and ensured a quality of choral singing at the Cathedral while establishing a key link with the Waikato University Music department.
Nigel served as musical director of the Bach Choir of Wellington for seven years expertly directing over twenty five concerts with an emphasis on the larger works of J.S. Bach. He forged a relationship with members of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra which lead to the formation of the Chiesa Ensemble. His last concert with the Bach Choir, before he moved to the UK, was a complete performance of J.S. Bach's Mass in B minor.
Nigel has composed a number of organ works including several currently being published by Wayne Leupold in The Organist's Companion. He has also written larger works for organ, congregation and choir including "A Hymn to St Peter" composed for St Peter's Cathedral Hamilton's (NZ) patronal festival. In 1998 he was commissioned to compose a celebratory cantata for the installation of a new 54 stop pipe organ at 1st Baptist Church Kalamazoo. Based on "How firm a foundation", this work involves an SATB choir, congregation, trumpet in B Flat and organ.
With increasing numbers of churches less able to maintain a vibrant four part choir he has written numerous unison, two and three part anthems and mass settings. Choirs in the UK, New Zealand, USA and Australia have performed these works with much success. Nigel has also undertaken secular commissions. Another of his mixed choir works was composed for Newcastle University in Australia. Jack in the Boat (text by New Zealand poet Allen Curnow) is composed for a large children's choir, a youth choir and senior university choir accompanied by flute, snare drum and piano. This music has been performed in Australia and New Zealand to critical acclaim.
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music by Nigel Williams