Paul Walton began his musical career as a chorister at Holy Trinity Church, Stratford-upon-Avon (Shakespeare’s church), and studied at the Royal Northern College of Music, with Margaret Philips, Matthew Owens and Kevin Bowyer. During this time, he was Organ Scholar at St. Ann’s Church, Manchester, and then Sydney Nicholson Organ Scholar at Manchester Cathedral, where his numerous recitals included seven all-Bach programmes. He undertook two years of postgraduate study, gaining his Fellowship of the Royal College of Organists (winning the Dixon Prize for Improvisation), the RNCM’s Postgraduate Diploma, Professional Performance Diploma (the highest award for performance offered by the College), and a Master’s degree, with distinction in performance.
Since September 2001, Paul has been Assistant Organist of Bristol Cathedral. As well as accompanying and assisting in the training of the Cathedral Choir, he directs the Cathedral Consort. He gives one recital per term at Bristol Cathedral, and has also given recitals at several other venues throughout Bristol such as St. Mary Redcliffe and Christ Church, Broad Street. Other solo recital venues have included St. Peter’s Church, Eaton Square, London (sponsored by the Keyboard Charitable Trust), cathedrals including St. Paul’s, Liverpool, Coventry and Hereford, Westminster Abbey, Tewkesbury Abbey, Rochdale Town Hall, Parr Hall, Warrington, and the Marktkirche, Hannover. He has been accompanist for Bristol Cathedral Choir’s tours to France, Germany, Italy, Poland and the USA. In summer 2019, he spent two months as Acting Master of the Choristers during Mark Lee’s sabbatical.
As well as performing the standard organ repertoire, Paul is a keen advocate of both rare and new music, and his four CD recordings on the Regent label include 20 first recordings of music by David Bednall, David Briggs, Paul Bryan, Paul Fisher, Nicolas Kingman, John Pickard, Philip Wilby and Elizabeth Winters, as well as the almost forgotten organist of Notre Dame, Léonce de Saint-Martin. These recordings have received widespread critical acclaim, including an Editor’s Choice in Organists’ Review, a Star Review in Choir & Organ, and two 4-star ratings in BBC Music Magazine. Paul has been described as ‘thoroughly musical and technically assured’, ‘committed performer’ and (his personal favourite) ‘young’.