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John Keys

   Professional Membership Status

The Best of Arvo Pärt

" lover of this composer’s music should be without their hypnotic performance of the Beatitudes with its continual alternation of two unrelated chords and ending with a shattering organ postlude - marvellously played by John Keys." (Gramophone)

Celebratory Organ Music

"As ever, the performances by John Keys on the organ of St Mary's, Nottingham, are is a splendid disc and a good resource for some well-known and less well-known music". David Dewar, Organists' Review

French & German Organ Music

“Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor receives a dazzling performance.” Peter Palmer, Nottingham Evening Post


Anglican Bishop Joel Marcus Johnson, of the Chesapeake, Maryland, USA

"John Keys' enormous success in his hymns is quite apart from the CDs' acoustical and instrumental triumphs, even from the agility of his fingers and feet. Mark this: he delivers hymns as both poet and theologian. He plays words and doctrines, not merely notes. And it's a very personal thing. As a Christian, he has the bond of intimacy with the poets and texts, richly empathetic with their phrasings, enabling him to nuance subtle shifts of registration. He leans into the music, but never emotes, never makes a hymn an ego trip. In turn, his congregations become confident, robust vocalists, because Keys is teaching them what the hymns mean. He is their partner. Yes, he is an exciting international concert artist, to my mind an heir of Wolfgang Rubsam. But he's on my Sunday Mass team by CD because of his servanthood - from the Lord God, to the poet, to the composer, to John Keys’ hands as teacher, theologian, poet, all dwelling within the musician."

David Virtue, in "VirtueOnline"

"If you are looking for excellent organ music while you work or play, I cannot recommend too highly the great hymns of the church recorded by the well-known British organist John Keys".

Comments by an Army Chaplain

“I use [the CDs] in services for my soldiers while we are deployed in Iraq. If it weren’t for these beautifully done pieces, we’d have no music. The organ accompaniments encourage us to sing – and to sing louder. I appreciate being able to offer meaningful music to accompany the theological depths of the great hymns of the Church.”

Seventh-Day Adventist hymns

“[I] can hardly contain myself. The hymns are so beautifully played, so soothing, I cannot find words to explain the joy it brings just listening to them.” (E. Abraham, London)

God of our Fathers with Fanfare

"I just downloaded the above hymn to use at Mass for our fallen soldiers. You just gave me one of the greatest musical gifts that I could get. The arrangement of this piece is superb and so is the musicianship of the performance. The harmony and execution is so perfect, it made me cry. Thank you so very much for your talent, time, generosity and wonderful sensitivity to the music." (Carol Williams, Florida)


Leicester Cathedral

"Show had passion and excitement

John Keys proved what an accomplished and versatile musician he is with sensitive and passionate playing. The mood of each piece was captured perfectly with many different sounds of the organ utilised".

Nottingham Albert Hall Binns organ

"Recital's virtuoso triumph

It was a stroke of genius to train a camera on John's hands so that the audience could see on a big screen his technical wizardry.....inHandel's Fireworks Music it was fascinating to see orchestral effects being created. In Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries the effect was doubly exhilarating - thrilling cascades of notes accompanied by images of fingers flying across the keys." William Ruff, Nottingham Evening Post

Derby Cathedral

“He took a monumental view of J.S.Bach's great C minor Passacaglia BWV 582, with a rock-solid rhythmic foundation." Mike Wheeler,

Music and Vision

Rochdale Town Hall

“Here was a commanding and mature interpretation, a real tour de force." Dr Joe Dawson, Rochdale Online

St Helen's, Burton Joyce, Nr Nottingham

"Excellent musicianship and sensitive playing." Grahame Whitehead, Nottingham Evening Post

St Mary the Virgin, Finedon

"Of the pieces by J.S. Bach, his Sonata in E was a delight especially for the popular cantabile melody of the Andante." Northampton & District Organists' Society

St Mary's, Nottingham

"In Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor (BWV 582) and Prelude and Fugue in E flat (BWV 552), stunning invention was deftly realised." Peter Palmer, Nottingham Evening Post

All Saints, Oakham

"Absolutely wonderful! Introduced us to new pieces. Everyone agreed really excellent programme and execution!"

St James the Great, Dursley

"John Keys produced some lovely sounds.... The Adagio on a theme of Albinoni by Giazotto was a delight. Its haunting, measured tones with its sustained chords and elaborate inter-weaving clearly pleased the ears of the large audience". Donald Hollins, Dursley Gazette
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