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The Organists

Guildford Cathedral has an Organist and Master of the Choristers, a Sub Organist and an Organ Scholar.

The Organist and Master of the Choristers is responsible for planning and producing all music at services in the cathedral. This involves the recruitment and management of the lay clerks, boy choristers and girl choristers of the Cathedral Choir. During choir practices and services, the organist is usually seen conducting the choir.

The Sub Organist assists the organist and master of the choristers and takes over in her absence. During services the sub organist can usually be seen playing the organ.

The organ scholarship is held for one academic year by either an undergraduate gap year student or a postgraduate student. The organ scholar assists the organists, acts as music librarian and holds the position of organist to the Guildford Cathedral Singers.

Katherine Dienes-Williams

Photograph of Katherine Dienes-Williams

Organist & Master of the Choristers

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Guildford Cathedral

Katherine Dienes-Williams, MA, BMus, LTCL, FRCO, Hon ARSCM, Hon GCM  was appointed Organist and Master of the Choristers at Guildford Cathedral in January 2008 following six years as Director of Music at the Collegiate Church of St Mary, Warwick. She was the first-ever female member to be elected to the Cathedral Organists' Association, and on her appointment to Guildford, became the first ever woman to hold such a post in the Church of England.

Asher Oliver

Photograph of Asher Oliver

Sub Organist

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Guildford Cathedral

Asher Oliver arrived in Guildford in April 2023, following nearly two years as Assistant Organist at York Minster. Originally hailing from the North-West, his musical education began as a chorister at Manchester Cathedral alongside a place at Chetham’s School of Music, where he later studied the organ with Christopher Stokes. 

After a gap year as organ scholar at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, Asher read Music at Trinity College, Cambridge. Working closely with the college choir there, he took part in tours across Europe and North America, and features as an accompanist on CDs of choral music by Finzi and Vaughan Williams. Upon leaving Cambridge, Asher moved to London, to take up the organ scholarship at St Paul’s Cathedral.