Paul Provost took up the post of Sub Organist of Guildford Cathedral in September 2009. His work includes assisting the Organist, Katherine Dienes-Williams, in all aspects of running the Cathedral Choirs, as well as being the main organist for Cathedral services. In addition to this, he is in demand as a freelance recitalist, accompanist, and choral director.
He began studies on the Piano and Cello at the ages of four and six – his early musical inspiration coming from attending choir rehearsals at the local church. Since then church music has played a large part in his life. He was educated at Chetham’s School of Music, where alongside the cello, organ became increasingly his principal study. During this time, Paul gave many organ and cello recitals and was a member of Chetham’s Symphony Orchestra, and the Wolstenholme Piano Trio who were highly regarded at the Lake District Summer Music Festival. He was also Organ Scholar at Manchester Cathedral between September 1999 and 2004.
From 2004 to 2007, Paul was Organ Student at St John’s College, Cambridge, where he was responsible for accompanying the daily round of services, and assisting the then Director of Music, David Hill - now chief conductor of the BBC Singers - in training the famous chapel choir. With St John’s, he toured to Paris, Austria, Estonia, the USA, Holland and Venice, in addition to numerous concerts, recordings, and broadcasts much less further afield. During this time, he also co-founded a baroque group, contrapunctus xiv, and has been widely active as an accompanist, recitalist and conductor. He has given organ recitals in such venues as Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, Westminster Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Kings College, Cambridge, and in the Buxton Festival, as well as playing continuo organ for such groups as the Sagittarian Consort, Florilegium, and the Southern Sinfonia.
Previously, Paul was Assistant Director of Chapel Music and Assistant Organist at Winchester College. There, he had a wide variety of duties, as accompanist, choir trainer, organ tutor, and classroom teacher. Whilst at Winchester, he accompanied the Chapel Choir on its tour to the USA, was the pianist for Winchester Music Club’s performance of Rossini’s Petit Messe Solenelle, and directed the Winchester Quiristers in a complete performance of Britten’s Friday Afternoons.
Paul is married to Ruth, a freelance singer working across the country, and they occasionally combine to perform song recitals.