Tom Williams picture.jpg

Tom Williams
Musical Director

Samuel Ali cropped.jpg

Tom Williams is a London-based choral conductor, singer and educator.


He is currently Director of Music at St Matthew’s, Kensington Olympia, where he leads the
newly established Music Foundation. He was for six years the Choral Director at St
Martin-in-the-Fields where he directed the renowned church choir in services, concerts, on CD
recordings and radio broadcasts, and on several international tours including visits to Paris and
Johannesburg.

 

In 2012, Tom founded award-winning chamber choir, The Erebus Ensemble, with whom he has appeared on BBC Radio 3, Classic FM and Scala Radio, and in concerts across the UK and Europe. The group was Ensemble-in-Residence at the Bristol Proms (Bristol Old Vic Theatre) and a prize winner at the inaugural London International Acappella Choir Competition at St John’s Smith Square. It enjoys a longstanding relationship with Harry Bicket and the English Concert and has appeared as the orchestra’s choral arm for performances at the Bridgewater Hall, Bath Abbey, Saffron Hall, Bristol Old Vic Theatre and at the Lausanne Festival in Switzerland. Erebus and the English Concert collaborated on a staged version of Handel’s Messiah (directed by Tom Morris), which was broadcast across eighty cinemas in the UK and Ireland. The Erebus Ensemble has produced two recordings and is currently working on a third album which will be released in celebration of its tenth anniversary in 2022.

Tom is well known for his work with amateur singers and he currently conducts two choral societies: Nailsea Choral Society and the West Barnes Singers. He is in much demand as a choral workshop leader and gives frequent workshops and masterclasses in London and Bristol. He has also led workshops further afield, most recently in Brittany and Amsterdam. He enjoys giving talks on various aspects of choral music and has done so on topics ranging from Allegory in the Eton Choirbook, music of the Reformation and Counter Reformation, and on the Tintinnabuli style of Arvo Pärt. In 2013 Tom co-founded the Clifton International Festival of Music, of which he is Artistic Director. It has become a firm favourite in the classical music calendar of Bristol and the surrounding areas, and has played host to the many household names in the music industry including The Tallis Scholars, The King’s Singers, I Fagiolini, The Sixteen, Dame Gillian Weir and Crispian Steele-Perkins

 

Samuel Ali was born in 1990 in Gravesend, Kent, and has Turkish and Italian heritage.  He is the organist at Christ Church in Chelsea and a postgraduate student at the Royal College of Music, where he completed a Master's Degree in performance.  Samuel is the first organist to study for the Artist Diploma at the RCM, having also completed his master’s degree there. He studies the organ with David Graham and Andrew Dewar, improvisation with Sophie-Véronique Cauchefer-Choplin and continuo with Robert Woolley.

Highlights of the last 12 months include being the soloist in an RCM performance of Poulenc’s organ concerto; giving a solo recital as part of London Bach Society’s 2018 Bachfest; and giving a joint recital with his teacher at the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory as part of an RCM cultural exchange trip. In the Summer of 2019 Samuel travelled to Slovakia to give three concerts in organ festivals across the eastern part of the country.

Previously, Samuel studied for a BMus with Darius Battiwalla at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester where he was supported by a Leverhulme scholarship, before which he held the organ scholarship at Rochester Cathedral.

Samuel Ali,

Accompanist