One of Britain’s most celebrated contemporary composers, Gabriel Jackson was born in Bermuda in 1962. After three years as a chorister at Canterbury Cathedral, Jackson went on to study composition with Richard Blackford and with John Lambert at the Royal College of Music. While at the college he won the Theodore Holland Award in 1981 and was awarded the R.O. Morris Prize for Composition in 1981 and 1983.
His music is regularly performed, recorded and broadcast throughout Europe and the United States and has recently been heard as far afield as Campine Grande, Taipei, Skálholt, Ho Chi Minh City, Hamilton, Kiev and Kuwait.
Particularly acclaimed for his choral works, his liturgical pieces are in the repertoires of most of Britain’s cathedral and collegiate choirs and he is a frequent collaborator with the leading professional groups of the world.
In 2003 he won the liturgical category at the inaugural British Composer Awards with O Doctor optime, and won two further prizes in the choral category with The Spacious Firmament in 2009 and Airplane Cantata in 2012. From 2010 to 2013 he was Associate Composer to the BBC Singers, producing a series of substantial pieces for the group including a virtuoso four-movement Choral Symphony.
Alongside his work with voices he has written a number of instrumental pieces that take their inspiration from conceptual artists Richard Long, Ian Hamilton Finlay and Yoko Ono. A longstanding interest in the technology and the aesthetics of aviation has produced a series of works that explore the “miracle of powered flight” including A Vision of Aeroplanes for choir, The White Bird for Eb clarinet and piano, Luna 21 in the Sea of Serenity for ensemble, and LM-7: Aquarius for saxophone quartet.
Jackson’s music can be heard on over 70 recordings including five discs devoted exclusively to his work on Delphian Records, Hyperion and Signum Classics.
Recent large-scale works include a Piano Concerto (2009) for the Presteigne Festival, the string-ensemble Doonies Hill Antiphon (2010) for RedNote Ensemble, In Nomine Domini (2010) for the BBC Proms, a 35-minute cantata To the Field of Stars (2011) and La musique (2013), premiered by Dame Felicity Lott and the Choir of Royal Holloway at the Cheltenham Festival.
In April 2014 his hour-long The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ, commissioned for the 750th anniversary of Merton College, Oxford, had its first performance in the college chapel and its New York premiere ten days later. Future projects include a half-hour piece for choir and orchestra for the 25th anniversary of the Riga-based youth choir Kamēr, and a chamber opera with Latvian librettist Kārlis Verdiņš.
Works by Gabriel Jackson
- Adoro te devote
- Ave Maria
- But let my due feet meet fail
- Confirma hoc Deus
- Edinburgh Mass
- Factus est repente
- Hymn to the Trinity
- Justorum animae
- Mass for All Saints
- Missa Sanctae Margaretae
- O Thou that art the Light
- O quam gloriosum
- O sacrum convivium
- Orbis patrator optime
- Peace, my heart
- Preces and Responses
- Salve Regina II
- Song (I Gaze upon You)
- St Asaph Toccata
- Te Deum
- The Armed Man
- Truro Service
Festival performances of works by Gabriel Jackson
Festival commissionWorld premiereLondon premiere
LFCCM @ Home
- Choral Recital on Saturday 16 May 2020 (online stream/broadcast)
- “Praise Him with Trumpets”: Music for Trumpets and Voices: Il Suono and Simon Desbruslais on Saturday 11 May 2019 at Hampstead Parish Church
- High Mass on Sunday 12 May 2019 at All Saints, Margaret Street
- Sung Eucharist on Sunday 19 May 2019 at St George’s, Hanover Square
- Solemn High Mass on Sunday 13 May 2018 at St Paul’s Church, Knightsbridge
- Choral Evensong on Sunday 13 May 2018 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Evensong on Sunday 20 May 2018 at HM Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace
- “Mother of God - Songs of Mary”: Promenade Concert on Friday 12 May 2017 at The National Gallery
- Choral Eucharist on Sunday 14 May 2017 at St Pancras Parish Church
- The Exon Singers on Sunday 14 May 2017 at St George’s Bloomsbury
- Choral Eucharist on Sunday 8 May 2016 at St Marylebone Parish Church
- Choral Eucharist on Thursday 12 May 2016 at St Pancras Parish Church
- “Martyrdom and Eternity”: Promenade Concert on Friday 13 May 2016 at The National Gallery
- Solemn Mass on Sunday 15 May 2016 at Westminster Cathedral
- Choral Eucharist on Sunday 15 May 2016 at The Queen’s Chapel of the Savoy
- Opening Concert on Saturday 9 May 2015 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Gala Concert on Saturday 16 May 2015 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Eucharist on Sunday 12 May 2013 at The Queen’s Chapel of the Savoy
- Choral Evensong on Sunday 12 May 2013 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Evensong on Thursday 16 May 2013 at Royal Holloway
- Choral Matins on Sunday 19 May 2013 at The Temple Church
- Choral Evensong on Wednesday 16 May 2012 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Eucharist on Thursday 17 May 2012 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Eucharist on Sunday 10 May 2009 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Evensong on Sunday 17 May 2009 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Eucharist on Sunday 18 May 2008 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Evensong on Sunday 18 May 2008 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Gala Concert on Saturday 14 May 2005 at St Pancras Parish Church
- Choral Evensong on Sunday 15 May 2005 at St Pancras Parish Church
Recorded performances of works by Gabriel Jackson
- O quam gloriosum performed by The Choir of St Pancras Parish Church / Christopher Batchelor Conductor / Douglas Tang Organ