Pipe organs became an enormously lucrative industry during the early 20th century. They could be found installed in concert halls, municipal buildings, universities and homes alike.
The hydraulis was once widely played at games, banquets and circuses – quite different than how most Americans see the instrument today when most typically associated with religious services or ceremonies.
Early Life and Education
Daniel has recorded several highly acclaimed CD recordings and is featured as soloist on the crowdfunded and recorded in 33 locations film The English Organ. Gramophone described Daniel as an ideal advocate for his instrument: an engaging performer whose music clearly articulated with intelligence, agility and light authority (Gramophone). For his contributions to music as an industry professional he was appointed an Associate of Royal Academy of Music in 2013.
As Master of Choristers and Organist at Durham Cathedral, he keeps a busy schedule of recitals, concerts and recordings. A staunch champion of contemporary music, he has presented first performances of works composed by such composers as Judith Bingham, Jonathan Dove, Neil Cox, Tarik O’Regan and Paul Patterson among many others.
Dan is both a musician and teaching artist. Through his talents, he strives to enrich children’s education in unexpected ways – for instance by incorporating art into classroom learning environments.
He has recorded many organ works and appeared at national, regional, and pedagogy conventions of the American Guild of Organists as a presenter or performer. Furthermore, he has participated in international festivals and competitions, such as Germany’s Leipzig Bach Festival.
Dan has developed an intense passion for theatre pipe organ, receiving scholarships from ATOS to attend their Summer Youth Adventure. Additionally, renowned theatre organist Jelani Eddington has helped him hone his arranging abilities.
Achievement and Honors
Daniel was known for his performances as both a solo recitalist, an accompanist, and many recordings on both piano and organ. Additionally, he won multiple prestigious competitions such as Tulsa Crescendo Music Awards and AGO/Quimby Region VII Competition.
Daniel was first diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in April 1993. Following two years of intense chemotherapy treatment he was given the all clear, only for it to recur within nine months and be told his best hope lay with receiving healthy stem cells from a donor.
Family decided to go public, forming the ACLT charity and Daniel became the first Black individual in the UK to receive lifesaving stem cell transplant from an unrelated donor, impacting over 220 lives through his donation.
Daniel enjoys an active musical career as one of the UK’s premier concert organists and collaborates with numerous acclaimed choirs. A member of JAM (John Armitage Memorial Trust), Daniel has performed new works by composers including Judith Bingham, Andrew Carter, Jonathan Dove Adam Gorb Gabriel Jackson and Tarik O’Regan among many others.
Gigi Rightsell, Glenn Rightsell’s widow, expressed disappointment with Organ’s indictment by saying her husband did nothing wrong that night and that Organ shot him only in self-defense.
Jacky found one instrument at Oberlin that particularly caught his interest: Brombaugh Opus 25 from Fairchild Chapel’s medieval-inspired design which is an example of 17th century design.
With multiple first prize wins at national organ performance competitions – such as Schweitzer and Poister organ festivals – and serving as judge in other national competitions, including Schweitzer and Poister organ festivals; as well as teaching church music, improvisation and organ repertoire to various local, regional, and national programs of American Guild of Organists (AGO).
He leads the vibrant organ department at Birmingham Conservatoire, including regular visits to European cathedrals. In addition, he serves on the board of trustees for Royal College of Organists Academy and offers instruction within London through it.
He has performed on tour throughout the world and often takes on organ concerto solo engagements, working with organizations such as Kammerorchester Basel and Capella Cracoviensis, recording Handel’s F major Organ Concerto with London Early Opera Orchestra for Signum Classics release.