Nicholas O’Neill

May 02, 2022

I was born in Cheltenham in the UK in 1970, and I am an award-winning composer and musician. My prizes include the Saint Fin Barre Cathedral Composition Prize, the Mayfield Festival Cantata Commission Competition, the American Guild of Organists Marilyn Mason Award for Organ Composition, the Barbara Johnstone Composition Prize, the Gregynog Young Composers’ Award, and the Norwich Festival Composition Competition. I have also been shortlisted for the William Mathias, Cornelius Cardew, Oare String Orchestra, Purcell and Vocalis composition awards.

In 2011 I was appointed Composer in Residence to the UK Parliament Choir in addition to my ongoing role with them as Chorus Master, and am the first composer to be associated officially with Parliament for nearly 500 years. In 2008 I became the first musician to be appointed Composer in Residence for the Academy of Saint Cecilia where I is also an Honorary Fellow and a member of the advisory panel. I am President of Cantores Salicium, the chamber choir of the Yorkshire Dales, and Associate Director of Music at St. Mary Abbots, Kensington. I have lectured at Trinity College of Music, Birkbeck College (University of London), Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, and Morley College. I have also held posts as Organist of Brighton College and St. George’s Cathedral, Southwark, and was Chorus Master of the Malcolm Sargent Festival Choir for over a decade.  I also work regularly with Southbank Sinfonia, accompanying them to the Anghiari Festival in Tuscany, where I introduce each concert in English and Italian.

My music has been broadcast multiple times on television and radio, and my Missa Sancti Nicolai was the Mass setting for the live BBC1 broadcast of Midnight Mass in 2011. Recent performance venues include Cadogan Hall, St. John’s, Smith Square, Notre Dame de Paris and at the London Festival Of Contemporary Church Music.

By night I play keyboards with rock band JEBO, who released their second album, Settle Up or Settle Down in 2012, described as ‘genuinely ingenious…undeniably brilliant’ by Venue magazine, with funk band RetroChic, and with soul singer Clyve Aguarde.  I am also a board game reviewer and blogger, writing for various websites and magazines worldwide.

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