James Johnstone : keyboards

James Johnstone studied organ and harpsichord in London and The Hague. For some 20 years he has been active as a continuo player on the UK early music scene playing with all of the major ensembles, notably as a principal of the Gabrieli Consort and Players with whom over 17 years he gave hundreds of concerts and made 22 recordings on Deutsche Grammophon. He has also performed with such artists as Yehudi Menuhin, Bernard Haitink, Simon Rattle, Pinchas Zuckemann and James Galway.

 These days his interests are now focused on recital work, chamber music and teaching. As a recitalist he has performed throughout the UK as well as in Holland, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Poland, Denmark, Iceland, Spain, Israel, Colombia and most recently the USA. His solo discs of works by Blow, Gibbons, Pasquini, Cornet, Elizabethan Virginalists and a Bach recital on the Waalse Kerk organ, Amsterdam, have been unanimously acclaimed.

 Chamber music has always been of primary importance and as such has played with Florilegium since 2001 (10 discs and tours of Europe and the Americas), Trinity Baroque, I Furiosi (Toronto), Harmonie Universelle (Florian Deuter, Köln), London Baroque, Concordia and La Serenissima. He also recently joined Trio Sonnerie at the invitation of Monica Huggett.

 Respected as a teacher, James is professor of early keyboards at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and at Trinity College of Music, and has given masterclasses in Europe and the States.


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