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Paul Paviour OAM

Paul Paviour

Paul Paviour OAM was born in Birmingham, U.K. in 1931. Traditional schooling followed, and after service in the Royal Marines and Royal Navy, he studied at the Royal College of Music in London where he completed B.Mus. and M.Mus. degrees. Paul was awarded the Fellowship and Harding Prize by the Royal College of Organists, one of the most prestigious awards at this level.

He studied with Herbert Howells, Gordon Jacob and Adrian Boult among others. In the following years he held many posts in London and other areas of the United Kingdom, both in the world of academia and as Organist and Director of the Choir at several senior Parish Churches and Cathedrals. In addition to this he was much sought after for commissioned works.

In 1969, Paul settled in Australia and accepted the position of Director of Music at All Saints College, Bathurst and also at the new Cathedral of the Bathurst diocese, then about to be built. .

In 1975 he joined the music faculty as lecturer in creative composition at Goulburn Teachers College, which later became the Goulburn Conservatorium of which he was Director. He was also conductor of several community based musical organistations such as, the Goulburn Community Orchestra, Argyle Operatic Society, Goulburn Consort of Voices and Director of Music at the historic Cathedral of the Canberra Goulburn Diocese.

In 1982 Paul and his choir, the Goulburn Consort of Voices, toured Europe and by special request, sang for and was received by His Holiness Pope John Paul II. In 1987 he was requested by the then Prime Minister, R. J. Hawke, to prepare the program of music for the opening, in May 1988, of the new Parliament House in Canberra by H. M. the Queen.

Paul’s list of compositions number over two hundred, of which several are of considerable complexity. These include eight symphonies, the large scale Missa Australis, five stage works, five concertos and about thirty orchestral works of some magnitude.

His contribution to amateur and semi-professional musical organisations is considerable, over half of his output being written for, or commissioned by, amateur societies. He feels very strongly that the health of any musical cultural lies not with the flagship companies but with the local choral societies and chamber instrumental groups.

Paul is very active as a lecturer, examiner for several external boards and as an adjudicator in Eisteddfods and competitive arts festivals.  He has recently been honoured as a Fellow of the Australian Society of Musicology and Composition (F.A.S.M.C).  He has been awarded, the Medal of Australia for his contribution to music; the Centenary Medal; appointed Director of Music Emeritus of Canberra-Goulburn Diocese; and the Concert Hall of Goulburn Regional Conservatorium has been named in his honour. 

Photograph by Bridget Elliott

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