Hugh Mather

A brief biog..

I am a retired physician, pianist and organist and now have a second ‘career' as a concert organizer in Ealing. Here are a few notes on the past 70 years ….

Medical career : I studied medicine at Cambridge University and Westminster Medical School, qualifying in 1970. I was a Registrar at St George's Hospital Tooting, and wrote an MD thesis on magnesium in diabetes. I was appointed Consultant Physician at Ealing Hospital in 1982, specialising in acute medicine and diabetes, and undertook extensive research on diabetes within the Asian community, notably the Southall Diabetes Survey (1985). Later on, I became heavily involved in the education and welfare of junior doctors, both at Ealing Hospital and at the Royal College of Physicians. I retired in 2006 after a hugely fulfilling and enjoyable career, to devote myself entirely to music. So my medical career is now only a distant memory.

Piano : I was educated at Westminster Abbey Choir School, obtaining gold and silver medals in Associated Board exams, and continued my studies as a music scholar at Clifton College, Bristol. As a Cambridge medical student there was little time to pursue musical activities, but in 1968 I commenced studies with James Gibb, Head of Keyboard at the Guildhall School, performing Beethoven's Hammerklavier sonata there in 1972. Thereafter, my studies with Jimmy Gibb continued for almost 40 years. I gave many concerts in West London and elsewhere, as concerto soloist, recitalist, accompanist and chamber musician. This included performances of concerti by Mozart, Beethoven, both Brahms, Chopin, Mendelssohn, Grieg, and Schumann. I now have osteoarthritis in my finger joints and memory problems, so my piano playing career has drawn to a close.

Organ : I studied the organ at Clifton College, and obtained the FRCO diploma with the Limpus and Reid prizes (awarded for the top marks) whilst still at school. After that, I effectively stopped playing the organ for over 40 years, until about 10 years ago, when Hazel Baker, Director of Music at St Barnabas, Ealing became ill, and I took over her organist duties at the church. The magnificent Hill organ was installed at St Barnabas in 2011.

Concert organizing prior to 2006 : I organized lunchtime concerts at Ealing Hospital on most Fridays from 1984 onwards, with about 40 concerts per year for over 20 years, or about 800 in all. The concerts were held in the hospital lecture theatre, and were free and open to the general public. They became a well-known feature of Ealing musical life, and continued until my retirement in 2006. This experience formed the basis for my current activities in organizing concerts elsewhere in Ealing.

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