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Iain Farrington

Iain Farrington was born and bred in Hitchin, Hertfordshire, where he sang in his local church choir as a child, and first began to play the organ. He was organ scholar at St John’s College, Cambridge, and studied piano at the Royal Academy of Music. Iain has since had an exceptionally busy and diverse career as a pianist, organist, composer and arranger. He has made numerous recordings, and has broadcast on BBC Television, Classic FM and BBC Radio 3. Iain’s compositions often mix popular and jazz elements with traditional classical forms, and they range from virtuoso display pieces to small works for beginner instrumentalists. His many chamber-orchestral arrangements allow large-scale works to be presented on an affordable smaller scale.

As a solo pianist, accompanist, chamber musician and organist, Iain has performed at all the major UK venues and abroad in the USA, Japan, Mexico, South Africa, Malaysia, Hong Kong and throughout Europe. He has accompanied numerous leading singers in concert, including Willard White, Bryn Terfel and Lesley Garrett. Iain played the piano at the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics with Rowan Atkinson, the London Symphony Orchestra and Sir Simon Rattle, broadcast to a global audience of around a billion viewers. As a session pianist, Iain has recorded numerous film and TV soundtracks for Hollywood, Disney, and independent productions. In 2018 he performed his solo piano arrangements of Mahler’s symphonies in an eleven-concert series in London. He has performed on numerous occasions at the BBC Proms, including solo performances in 2007 on the Royal Albert Hall organ.

Iain has composed film, opera, musical theatre, ballet, orchestral, choral and instrumental Pieces, and has arranged hundreds of works in many styles, including opera, orchestral, choral, African songs, cabaret, klezmer, jazz and pop. He composed Voices of the World for the coronation of King Charles III in 2023, and arranged several of the orchestral pieces for the occasion. His orchestral compositions for the BBC Proms include Earth Symphony (with Hans Zimmer) in 2022, A Party with Auntie also in 2022, Beethoveniana in 2020, Gershwinicity in 2018, and two orchestral works for the Wallace and Gromit Prom in 2012. He co-composed the soundtrack to Horrible Histories: The Movie – Rotten Romans in 2019. With the poet, DJ and actor Craig Charles he has written three large-scale orchestral works based on traditional fairy tales. In 2023 he co-wrote a musical based on the songs of Ivor Novello, including Iain’s own songs and incidental music. His chamber orchestrations of the symphonic repertoire are regularly performed around the world, and his organ arrangement of Elgar’s fifth Pomp and Circumstance march was performed at the Royal Wedding in 2011. He is the Arranger-in-Residence for the Aurora Orchestra and he was the General Editor of the Elgar Complete Edition for six years. With his Art Deco Trio, he has performed and recorded his own jazz/classical versions of popular favourites.

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