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James McVinnie


 Meredith Monk      On Ellis Island
 Julia Wolfe   Earring
 Sufjan Stevens   The Year of Our Lord  
 David Chalmin   Constellation 
 J S Bach   Ich Ruf zu Dir BWV 639 
 Tom Jenkinson   Acid Ober 
 Nico Muhly   Very Fast Music from Patterns  
 INTERVAL (20mins)  
 Messiaen   Le Banquet Celeste 
 Tayla-Leigh Payne    NightMusic
 J S Bach   Passacaglia & Fugue in C minor BWV 582  
 Philip Glass   Mad Rush

James McVinnie
’s work as a performer encompasses music from the 16th century to the present day. His boundless approach to music making has lead him to collaborations with many leading figures in music including Philip Glass, Tom Jenkinson/Squarepusher, Angelique Kidjo, Nico Muhly, Martin Creed, David Lang, Richard Reed Parry, Bryce Dessner & Darkstar, many of whom have written large scale works for him. He has released music on Bedroom Community, Orange Mountain Music and Warp Records. 

2021/22 season will see the launch of the James McVinnie Ensemble,a collective of virtuoso keyboardists from London that specialise in new music. The ensemble’s roots go back to 2017 with a performance at London’s Barbican centre of Philip Glass Music in Twelve Parts — the only performance in the piece’s history given by anyone other than the composer’s own ensemble. Launch concerts at Bold Tendencies, London in September 2021 feature composer portraits of Gabriella Smith, Philip Glass and John Adams, and at London’s Barbican centre in November 2021 featuring Philip Glass’s Glassworks & Chris P Thompson’s True Stories & Rational Numbers for keyboards in just intonation. 

In 2021/22 McVinnie will give the first performances in France of an hour long work for organ and 100 speakers in 1bit electronics written for him by Tristan Perich and a new concerto written for him by Gabriella Smith with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Esa Pekka Salonen, as well as solo appearances at Lyon Auditorium, Bel-Air Festival in Chambéry, France, Hidden Notes Festival and BBC Proms 2021 with the BBC Concert Orchestra with the UK premiere of Samy Moussa’s A Globe Itself Infolding.

Pre-covid highlights include the first performances of Philip Glass’s Symphony 12 'Lodger' with Angelique Kidjo and the Los Angeles Philharmonic under John Adams and in London with the London Contemporary Orchestra at Southbank Centre, performances of Nico Muhly's organ concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra, an evening-length collaboration with electronic duo 'Darkstar' for the SPCO Liquid Music series and an ongoing collaboration with Tom Jenkinson/Squarepusher. During the 2020 lockdown he launched The Bach Project — an in depth study of Bach’s monumental Clavierübung III as well as a release of his recording of the work made in 2017 at the 1702 Art Schnitger organ of the Aa Kerk, Groningen, NL.

James McVinnie was Assistant Organist of Westminster Abbey between 2008 and 2011. Prior to this appointment, he held similar positions at St Paul’s Cathedral, St Albans Cathedral, and Clare College, Cambridge where he studied music. His teachers were Sarah Baldock, Thomas Trotter and Hans Fagius. He made his debut at London’s Royal Festival Hall in March 2014, giving one of the six reopening recitals on the refurbished iconic 1954 Harrison & Harrison organ. He made his solo debut in the Salzburg Festival at age 26 performing with the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra under Ivor Bolton.

©James McVinnie 2018

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