Edward Dean, Director of Music & Monastic Organist
Edward Dean is Director of Music and Monastic Organist here at Worth Abbey, and is a graduate of both the Royal College of Music and the Eastman School of Music (Rochester NY, USA). His responsibilities include playing for Lauds, Conventual Mass and Vespers on a daily basis, as well as directing the Abbey Choir since assuming the position in September 2022.
In March 2018, he was appointed as Assistant Director of Music at Holy Trinity Sloane Street: a building once described by John Betjeman as “The Cathedral of the Arts and Crafts”; he was later appointed Organist. Previous Organists of Holy Trinity Sloane Street include Edwin Lemare, Walter Alcock and John Ireland. During this time, he performed for HRH Prince Philip at Sandringham and recorded live for Classic FM.
At the Eastman School of Music, Edward earned his Master of Music degree studying under Nathan Laube and was supported very generously during his time there by the Ann Anway scholarship and also the Charles R. Nicholls Memorial Scholarship. In July 2013 he graduated from the Royal College of Music in London with First Class Honours, gaining the Harold Darke prize for organ performance at the same time. At the Royal College he studied interpretation and improvisation with Sophie-Véronique Cauchefer Choplin (Saint-Sulpice, Paris), with David Graham (Church of the Immaculate Conception, Farm Street), and harpsichord with Terence Charlston. In between his studies in London and the USA, he studied privately with Andrew Dewar at the American Cathedral in Paris. Edward has also held positions at the American Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in Paris, St Bride’s Church Fleet Street, and the Anglican Church in Oslo. At the beginning of his career, he was awarded the first ever Organ Scholarship to Lancing College.
He recently accompanied the Choirboys of St Paul’s Harvard Square (Boston, USA) on a tour of Italy, during which he played for Sunday Mass at St Peter’s Basilica (Vatican), St Mark’s Basilica in Venice, and performed alongside the world-famous Choirboys of the Sistine Chapel Choir in concert at San Carlo al Corso, Rome.
As a composer, Edward’s compositions have been performed at many prestigious venues and festivals, including the East Texas Pipe Organ Festival and the Cathedral of St John the Divine, New York City. He is also in high demand as an harmonium player, and has restored harmoniums and acted as a consultant for the BBC. He writes regularly for the Abbey Choir here at Worth Abbey, and has recently performed at Westminster Cathedral, Keble College Oxford, Exeter College Oxford and Quarr Abbey as a part of their 2023 Vierne Series.