Tavener, Sir John (Kenneth)
- Ivan Moody
(b London, Jan 28, 1944; d Dorset, Nov 12, 2013). English composer. Having begun at an early age to improvise and compose at the piano, he continued his education at Highgate School, where he studied piano, organ and composition. Two early works, a setting of the Credo (1961) and Genesis (1962), were performed at St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Frognal, Hampstead, where his father was organist. Tavener himself was appointed organist at St John’s Presbyterian Church in Kensington in 1961. In January 1962 he entered the RAM, where he studied piano with Solomon and composition with Lennox Berkeley and, later, Lumsdaine, who introduced him to contemporary music such as that of Messiaen and Boulez. During his time at the Academy, his one-act opera The Cappemakers and his song cycle Three Holy Sonnets of John Donne were performed, and he won the Prince Rainier III of Monaco Prize for his cantata ...