John Rutter

Composers

Biography

Born: September 24, 1945; London, England  
John Rutter is one of England's best-known composers of the late twentieth century, as well as a widely respected choral conductor and music scholar and editor. While his choral works (including the Te Deum, Magnificat, and Requiem) are the most familiar, he has also written instrumental works, including a piano concerto, the Suite Antique for flute, harpsichord, and strings, and two children's operas.

Musically he could be characterized
Read more as a reactionary, as his works show very distinct influences from the past and show almost no signs of progressivism or even contemporary influences. He has a strong sense of the English musical traditions, and some of the more significant English musical influences on his work include Ralph Vaughn Williams, William Walton, and Benjamin Britten. Non-English influences include Fauré, Gregorian chant, and Bach, and his Suite Antique is a direct tribute to the Brandenburg Concerto No. 5, written for the same instruments and in the same style. However, his music's immediate accessibility, being both tuneful and expressive, and its wide general appeal have still earned him a place in the English musical tradition, though not the place of an innovator, and while he is most popular in England and the United States, his music is performed worldwide.

He began his musical career as a member of the Highgate School chorus, continued to study organ, and went on to Cambridge University, where he studied at Clare College. At the age of 30, in 1975, he returned to Clare, where he was director of music. In 1979, however, he left the position in order to give more attention to composing and to conducting, though he still contributed to the study of choral music, acting as an editor in the Carols for Choirs and Oxford Choral Classics series. He formed the Cambridge Singers in 1981, though once they were established as a leading chamber choir, he left off leadership of the group, again in order to concentrate on composing and conducting. In 1985, his Requiem had its first performance, followed in 1990 by his Magnificat and his 1993 Psalmfest. In 1996, he was awarded a Lambeth Doctorate of Music by the Archbishop of Canterbury, for his services to church music. In addition to all of these activities, he manages a CD label, Collegium Records, largely devoted to his own music. This was more or less by chance; he had no intention of doing so until an established label offered him a contract; the terms struck him as being so unsatisfactory that he decided to do it himself. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 66 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Rutter: Christmas Star And A Christmas Festival
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 306 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Traditional,  Lowell Mason,  William James Kirkpatrick,  Mel Torme  ... 
    Performer:  Andrew Williams,  Andrew Williams,  Melanie Marshall,  Clara Sanabras  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  Cambridge Symphony Orchestra,  Farnham Youth Choir  ... 
    CD: $24.99
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  • 2.
    O Praise The Lord Of Heaven - Music Of Rejoicing & Reflection By John Rutter
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 522 Release Date: 09/24/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers
    CD: $11.99
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  • 3.
    Sea Change: The Choral Music Of Richard Rodney Bennett
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 521 Release Date: 03/26/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Rodney Bennett
    Performer:  Charles Fullbrook,  Sue Dorey
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers Choir
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  • 4.
    Rutter: Blessing / Catrin Finch
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001760602 Release Date: 11/06/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter,  Catrin Finch,  Traditional
    Performer:  Catrin Finch,  Elin Manahan Thomas,  Louise Watson,  Kia Bennett
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sinfonia Cymru
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  • 5.
    Essential Carols
    Label: Cct   Catalog: 5162 Release Date: 10/09/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Traditional,  William James Kirkpatrick,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Patrick Hadley  ... 
    Performer:  Francis Grier,  Gareth Morrell,  Ian Hare,  Stephen Varcoe  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Philip Ledger,  Sir David Willcocks,  Richard Hickox,  Eric Ericson  ... 
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  • 6.
    This Is The Day / Rutter, Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 136 Release Date: 04/24/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Sir William Walton,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Andrew Lucas,  Elin Manahan Thomas
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  Aurora Orchestra
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  • 7.
    The Colors Of Christmas / John Rutter, Bach Choir, Royal Philharmonic
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001609202 Release Date: 10/24/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  Franz Xaver Gruber,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Adolphe Adam  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bach Choir,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 8.
    British Composers - Guide To Britain
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 29001 Release Date: 08/23/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Herbert Howells,  Benjamin Britten  ... 
    Performer:  Garth Benson,  Robert Tear,  Sir Philip Ledger,  Felicity Palmer  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli,  Boris Ord,  André Previn,  Philip Ledger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Music Group of London,  Polyphony (Vocal Ensemble)
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  • 9.
    Rutter: A Song In Season / Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 135 Release Date: 10/12/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Cambridge Singers
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  • 10.
    Faure: Requiem & Other Choral Music / Rutter, Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 520 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gabriel Fauré
    Performer:  John Scott,  Ruth Holton,  Stephen Varcoe,  Caroline Ashton  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
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  • 11.
    The Sacred Flame / John Rutter, Cambridge Singers, La Nuova Musica
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 134 Release Date: 05/05/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Heinrich Schütz,  Hans Leo Hassler,  Tomás Luis de Victoria  ... 
    Performer:  Katy Hill,  James Holiday,  Ben Breakwell,  Gabriel Crouch  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  La nuova musica
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  • 12.
    A KDFC Classical Christmas 4
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 74122 Release Date: 10/28/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Prizeman,  Jay Livingston,  Hector Berlioz,  Agustín Barrios Mangoré  ... 
    Performer:  John Williams,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Arturo Delmoni,  Luciano Pavarotti
    Conductor:  Robert Prizeman,  Jeffrey Thomas,  John Georgiadis,  David Zinman  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Libera,  Canadian Brass,  Tanglewood Festival Chorus  ... 
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  • 13.
    A Christmas Festival / Rutter, RPO, Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 133 Release Date: 10/14/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugh Martin,  Felix Mendelssohn,  John Rutter,  Traditional  ... 
    Performer:  John Anderson,  Melanie Marshall,  Clara Sanabras,  Andrew Williams  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  Farnham Youth Choir,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 14.
    Best Carols 100
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 10371 Release Date: 11/06/2007   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Traditional,  William James Kirkpatrick,  Henry Walford Davies,  Patrick Hadley  ... 
    Performer:  Francis Grier,  Jeremy Blandford,  Barbara Hendricks,  Hermann Prey  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Philip Ledger,  Sir David Willcocks,  John Rutter,  Andrew Parrott  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir,  Clare College Choir,  Clare College Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $26.99
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  • 15.
    Candlelight / Rutter, The Cambridge Singers, Et Al
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 518 Release Date: 10/09/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Sir William Walton,  Traditional  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  City of London Sinfonia
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  • 16.
    Rutter: Choral Works / Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 305 Release Date: 10/09/2007   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  John Rutter
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sinfonia of London,  Cambridge Singers,  Philip Jones Brass Ensemble
    CD not available
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  • 17.
    Handel: Messiah / Rutter, Cambridge Singers, Royal Po
    Label: Martingale   Catalog: 1085 Release Date: 09/04/2007   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel
    Performer:  Joanne Lunn,  Christopher Purves,  James Gilchrist,  Melanie Marshall
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 18.
    Discover - Choral Music
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8558198 Release Date: 08/28/2007   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Arvo Pärt,  Benjamin Britten,  Ralph Vaughan Williams  ... 
    Conductor:  Hervé Niquet,  Jeremy Summerly,  Wolfgang Helbich,  Vittorio Zanon  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Le Concert Spirituel,  Oxford Camerata,  I Febiarmonici  ... 
    CD: $9.99
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  • 19.
    Lighten Our Darkness / Rutter, The Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 131 Release Date: 10/17/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Francisco Guerrero,  Anonymous,  John Sheppard,  William Byrd  ... 
    Performer:  John Harte,  Simon Wall
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers
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  • 20.
    A Christmas Nativity
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000538902 Release Date: 10/11/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gloria Shayne Baker,  Michael Praetorius,  William James Kirkpatrick,  Lewis H. Redner  ... 
    Performer:  Anthony Way,  Dame Joan Sutherland,  Malcolm Martineau,  Bryn Terfel  ... 
    Conductor:  John Scott,  Richard Westenburg,  Richard Bonynge,  Trevor Pinnock  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Paul's Cathedral Choir,  English Chamber Orchestra,  Trapp Family Singers  ... 
    CD: $12.99
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  • 21.
    The Ultimate Relaxation Christmas Album Ii
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000535502 Release Date: 10/11/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  James Pierpont,  Franz Schubert,  César Franck,  Gabriel Fauré  ... 
    Performer:  Luciano Pavarotti,  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa,  Stephen Cleobury,  Stephen Goss  ... 
    Conductor:  Annuncio Paolo Mantovani,  Kurt Herbert Adler,  Barry Rose,  George Guest  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Annunzio Paolo Mantovani Orchestra,  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  English Chamber Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $15.99
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  • 22.
    The Best Carols in the World... Ever!
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 66923 Release Date: 10/04/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  John Henry Hopkins Jr.,  Traditional,  John Francis Wade,  William Billings  ... 
    Performer:  David Bell,  Ian Hare,  Mair Jones,  Robert Tear  ... 
    Conductor:  Owain Arwel Hughes,  Sir David Willcocks,  Andrew Parrott,  John Rutter  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Huddersfield Choral Society,  Mediaeval Baebes,  Philip Jones Brass Ensemble  ... 
    Recommendation
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  • 23.
    Fancies - Music By John Rutter / Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 516 Release Date: 09/20/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter
    Performer:  Simon Davies,  Duke Dobing,  Caroline Ashton,  Wayne Marshall
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  City of London Sinfonia,  Cambridge Singers
    CD: $11.99
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  • 24.
    Gloria - The Sacred Music Of John Rutter / Cambridge Singers
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 515 Release Date: 09/20/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter
    Performer:  Quentin Poole,  Gary Kettel,  Caroline Ashton,  Eric Allen  ... 
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  City of London Sinfonia,  Philip Jones Brass Ensemble
    CD: $11.99
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  • 25.
    Rutter: Sprig Of Thyme, Etc / Rutter, Et Al
    Label: Collegium Records   Catalog: 517 Release Date: 09/20/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  John Rutter,  Ralph Vaughan Williams
    Conductor:  John Rutter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Singers,  City of London Sinfonia members
    CD: $11.99
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