Skip Navigation


16 July 2017 5:15pm

The 1st in Ely Cathedral's series of 'Sunday Organ Recitals'

Benjamin Saunders - Concert Organist

Free Admission
Retiring Collection


Dance Number Four Philip Glass (United States 1937-)
Pieces from 'The Happy Breed' Dick Hyman (United States 1927-)
1. Air for rock organ
2. Cocktails and pedals
3. Throwaway

Anna Prosser Miroir de Peine Hendrik Andriessen (Netherlands 1892-1981) (with soprano Anna Prosser)
Pieces from 'The Happy Breed' Dick Hyman
4. Brazil 99
5. Under the fingers
6. Slumpin'

Deuxième Choral Hendrik Andriessen
Shenandoah Dick Hyman

Benjamin Saunders was born in Warrington and educated at George Heriot's School in Edinburgh. He received his first organ lessons at the age of sixteen at St Mary's Metropolitan Cathedral, Edinburgh and two years later won an Organ Scholarship to Downing College, Cambridge, where he studied with Peter Hurford. Upon graduating, he held organist posts at the Cathedrals of St Giles' Edinburgh, Blackburn, and Chester and continued organ studies with David Sanger, Ann Bond and Michel Bouvard. In 2002, Saunders was appointed Director of Music for the Diocese of Leeds, leading the department at Leeds Cathedral. Under his leadership, the Cathedral has become the centre of England's largest choral programme, made up of 3200 children meeting weekly. This comprises six boys choirs, six girls choirs, 53 school choirs, a choir school, a professional adult choir and an Organists Training Programme. During this time, he has been privileged to act as consultant and adviser to a number of the UK and Ireland's other musically pre-eminent cathedrals. He has been a guest speaker at a variety of university conferences across the UK, Ireland and the United States and a judge for the BBC Young Chorister of the Year Competition. He was appointed a Director of Leeds College of Music in 2013 and Visiting Professor of Music at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana in 2015. He has also received honorary awards from the Guild of Church Musicians and the Royal School of Church Music.

Saunders has performed to HM the Queen, Princess Anne and US President Carter and worked with conductor Carl Davis and jazz virtuoso Dick Hyman. Solo tours have led him to give organ recitals in Russia, France, Italy, Holland, Germany, Austria, Slovenia and the United States. Major international recitals have included Koenigsberg Cathedral in Kaliningrad (Russia), Cologne Cathedral, Perugia Cathedral, Berlin Cathedral, Stuttgart Abbey, the Basilica of St Lorenzo in Florence, the Church of the Incarnation in Dallas and the inauguration of the new organ in the Abbey of the Genesee, New York. He has previously recorded both as organist and conductor for Herald AV and now records for Brilliant Classics with four recent CD releases of the organ works of Georgi Mushel and Hendrick Andriessen, and choral works of Maurice Duruflé and Arvo Pärt. A new jazz recording of the complete organ works of Dick Hyman was released in March 2016 on the ProOrgano label and choral recording of liturgical music on the Herald AV label in February 2016. He has also been a drummer in two rock bands and keyboardist in the Edinburgh International Jazz Festival. Benjamin is next playing at the Kathedrale Basiliek St.Bavo, Haarlem for the International Andriessen/De Clerk Festival in September. Further details can be found at

A native of Wales, Anna Prosser studied at Trinity College, Carmarthen, graduating in 2010 with a BA(Hons) Acting. Whilst there she was trained in the techniques of practitioners Meisner and Stanislavsky.

After University Anna achieved several diploma qualifications, most notably the Associate of Trinity College, London and Licentiate of London College of Music. In 2013 Anna accepted a place to study a Postgraduate Diploma in Classical Performance at Leeds College of Music, where she studied with Tim Ochala-Greenough.

Anna is currently a Choral Scholar at Leeds Cathedral, and works as a singing teacher in schools throughout West Yorkshire. She combines this work with solo work in the Leeds area, more recently Verdi's 'Requiem' and McNeff's 'Image in Stone'.