Jonathan started his musical life as a chorister in the choir of Norwich Cathedral. During this time he appeared several times as a soloist on BBC radio 3, including singing the treble solo of S.S.Wesley’s The Wilderness on a broadcast of choral evensong in 1984, and subsequently on live television in the USA. At the age of twelve he founded his own choir, the Eastern Chamber Singers; for two years this group of eight voices performed around north Norfolk, until Jonathan left Norfolk take up a music scholarship at Uppingham School. There he studied too many instruments to permit rigorous academic endeavour, including organ under Nicolas Kynaston and David Dunnett, and singing under John Whitworth.
He returned to Norwich as a countertenor choral scholar (and subsequently layclerk) at the cathedral. He read music, specialising in composition, at the University of East Anglia, whilst studying singing with Ashley Stafford at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. He has also sung as a layclerk in the cathedral choirs of St. Edmundsbury and Chester.
He has directed the trebles of Norwich Cathedral Choir, the Cathedral Consort, the Wymondham Choir, and several amateur choirs, both adults and children; in rehearsal he has conducted the ‘Seven Magnificat Antiphons’ by Arvo Pärt in the presence of the composer. In 2018 he was invited to be guest director of the Rietman Singers, in succession to Michael Kibblewhite, which invitation has been repeated for 2019. He is active as a jazz musician, and has shared a stage with Jack Parnell and Digby Fairweather from the founding generation of modern British jazz, as well as stars of the young generation including Kit Downes, Sam Braysher and Freddie Gavita. As a composer, he has written evening canticles premiered at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, and a prelude and fugue for organ performed at the Royal Academy of Music St Cecilia’s Day concert. He was organist at North Elmham church for sixteen years until taking on the post of organist and choirmaster at Fakenham Parish Church in September 2017. An enjoyable highlight of his life as an organist was recording the organ music for “In Search of the Brontës” for BBC1 TV.
Jonathan was appointed Musical Director of the North Norfolk Chorale, now the Norfolk Camerata, in 2016. He has a love of early music, performing on recorders and other early wind instruments, and is a founder member of the early music consort ‘Musica Mira’. Michala Petri said of his playing at a masterclass, in 2013, “You play great!”, which he regards as the supreme moment of his musical career to date!