Senior Organ Scholar
Daniel Mathieson ARCO
Born in Norwich, Dan grew up in Yorkshire and began his musical studies in 2003 as a chorister, clarinettist, and later as a pianist. In 2010 he began studying the organ at York Minster and during his sixth-form years also gained a DipABRSM in Musical Performance on piano.
As Senior Organ Scholar at Worcester College, Oxford, Dan is involved with the direction and accompaniment of services, concerts and tours, alongside training the probationers and choristers of the boys’ choir; a role shared with the other Organ Scholars and Director of Chapel Music. Since 2015, he also holds an academic scholarship in music. His work has included solo recitals at the chapels of Exeter, Keble, Worcester and The Queen’s Colleges, Oxford; St. Peter’s, Gloucester as part of the 2016 Three Choirs Festival; as well as performances in the Queen’s Chapel of the Savoy, London; Grace Church, New York; Trinity Church, Boston; and York Minster. In September, Dan will take up the position of Organ Scholar at Salisbury Cathedral.
Dan also works as the Betts Undergraduate Organ Scholar for the Faculty of Music, co-ordinating masterclasses with visiting organists and study trips abroad. He currently studies with William Whitehead, having previously studied with David Pipe, and is a triple-prizewinning Associate of the Royal College of Organists.
Junior Organ Scholars
Alexander Palotai ARCO
Alexander Palotai began his musical education as a chorister in Chelmsford Cathedral in 2005, where he was later appointed Junior Organ Scholar in 2011. In 2013 he was awarded the inaugural Sir David Willcocks organ scholarship at Clifton College, where he studied the organ with James Hills during sixth form. Whilst at Clifton he was also organ scholar of Bristol Cathedral, where he accompanied the choirs throughout the year. In 2014 he was part of the first class of organists at the Royal Academy of Music’s junior department, where he was taught by Anne Marsden Thomas and Peter Holder. As a soloist he has performed in venues such as Bristol Cathedral, St Lawrence Jewry in London and St Lawrence, Alton, as part of their international recital series. He has also worked with orchestras, performing the Saint-Saëns’ ‘Organ Symphony’ and Handel’s ‘Organ Concerto no.4’. In 2014 he won the Bach and Free Repertoire classes in the Bristol Eisteddfod Competition.
As one of the Junior Organ Scholars at Worcester College, he accompanies the choirs and trains the boy choristers in conjunction with the other Organ Scholars and the Director of Chapel Music. He is currently taught by William Whitehead.
Julia Alsop began studying music whilst at The Portsmouth Grammar School, before becoming the youngest founder member of Cantate, the Girls’ Choir at Portsmouth Cathedral, in 2006. At school she held a music scholarship and played in a variety of ensembles, taking lessons in organ, in which she has achieved DipABRSM in performance, as well as studying violin, voice and piano. Julia also studied piano at the junior department of Trinity Laban Conservatoire, winning the opportunity to play in a piano ensemble at the Wigmore Hall. In her final year of sixth form, Julia also took up the Junior Organ Scholarship at Portsmouth Cathedral, where she accompanied the choir every week.
During the summer of 2015 Julia also spent a week studying piano at the Royal Danish Academy of music, and at the Aldeburgh Festival as part of the Hesse Student Scheme. She spent a gap year as Organ Scholar at St Paul’s within the Walls in Rome. Beyond her musical duties at the church, she had opportunities to accompany in Papal Basilicas, as well as singing and playing organ and harpsichord in choral and orchestral concerts.