St John's College - Chapel News
New Choir Director 2012-13
Alasdair Jamieson MA (Hons), MLitt, PhD, CertEd, ARCO
Alasdair was born in Edinburgh, and went to St Andrews University to take a degree in Modern Languages and Music. Having qualified as a teacher at Cambridge University, he taught for 20 years in various schools in Cheltenham, Gloucester, Abingdon and York. Along the way there was an opportunity to research into the music of the contemporary Italian composer Goffredo Petrassi; this entailed a prolonged stay in Rome to interview the composer (1986-7). Having enjoyed the experience of research, Alasdair started a PhD at Durham in 2001, looking into the music of Hamish MacCunn. While researching, he sang as a Lay Clerk at Ripon Cathedral and taught on several short-term contracts. He was appointed as AHRC Research Fellow in the Music Department in 2008 to work on an Irish Art Music project. Out of this came a monograph on two Northern Irish composers, Joan Trimble and Havelock Nelson to be published by Field Day Publications. He is now a Teaching Fellow in Music.
Alasdair has conducted choirs from undergraduate days onwards. While teaching at Bootham School in York, he conducted the combined British Quaker School choirs in a performance of Britten’s War Requiem in Ripon Cathedral. At present he directs a vocal quintet – Amici – and sings in the St Peter’s Singers of Leeds. Since moving to Yorkshire in 1995 his conducting interests have expanded to take in opera (26 productions with York Opera) and orchestral works – he is just starting his eighth year in charge of the York Symphony Orchestra.