from St Anne's

Tristan Russcher to be Associate Organist at Belfast Cathedral

Belfast Cathedral - Tristan Russcher to be Associate Organist at Belfast Cathedral

In August, Jack Wilson moved from Belfast to take up the post of Graduate Organ Scholar at Ely Cathedral. This left a need for the Music Department at Belfast Cathedral to secure the skills an organist to accompany cathedral services and events, working with the cathedral's Director of Music, Matthew Owens.

Whether by providence or good fortune, one of the Republic of Ireland's premier accompanimental organists has just moved from Dublin to live in Belfast. The Dean and Board of the cathedral are delighted that Tristan Russcher has agreed to offer his services playing the organ at St Anne's in the capacity of Associate Organist.

Tristan grew up in Perth, Australia, and has been playing the piano since the age of three. He left Australia to study for his A-levels at Ampleforth College, York. On entry to university Tristan was awarded the organ scholarship at Worcester College, Oxford. After completing his Bachelor of Arts in Music, Tristan was appointed to the post of joint organ scholar at St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Christ Church Cathedral, in Dublin. He won prizes in the Royal College of Organists’ diploma examinations, gaining his Fellowship diploma in 2004.

From 2005 to 2009 Tristan was Assistant Director of Music at Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, working with the late Dean Desmond Harmon. While at Christ Church, Tristan was responsible for playing the organ at all services and for running the Cathedral Girls' Choir.

During this time he was runner-up in the Pipeworks International Organ Festival (2005) and in 2008 he presented a joint recital series of the complete organ works of Olivier Messiaen.

From 2011 Tristan has been Director of Music at St Bartholomew's Parish, Clyde Road in Dublin. There he has developed and enhanced the choral and musical life of the parish, in addition to pursuing a freelance musical career. Tristan has also worked with the renowned choir, The Choral Scholars of University College Dublin.

However, with close family ties to Northern Ireland, Tristan and his family have recently decided to make the move north and settle in Belfast.

Welcoming the news of Tristan Russcher's new association with Belfast Cathedral, the Dean of Belfast, The Very Reverend Stephen Forde said "Tristan's move to our city could not have come at a more opportune time. He brings a wealth of musical experience to Belfast Cathedral. I look forward to an extremely fruitful partnership developing with Matthew Owens that can only enhance the music which this cathedral offers. Tristan’s commitment to St Bartholomew’s runs until mid-November. After this we look forward to welcoming his full involvement with the musical life of our cathedral."

Matthew Owens added "It is tremendously good news that Tristan will be joining us at Belfast Cathedral and I am very much looking forward to working with him."

Tristan Russcher pictured at the console of the organ at Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin.