Our Musical Director
Mark Jones has been Musical Director of Fakenham Choral Society since the beginning of October 2018, following in the footsteps of our much loved previous director, Janet Kelsey.
Mark started his musical life as a chorister at Exeter cathedral. He was Head Chorister in his final year and then went on to King’s College, Taunton as senior music scholar. In his first year at King’s he started learning the organ and from his second year accompanied the choral services in the chapel. He then entered the Royal College of Music in London studying organ and piano.
After graduating he spent two years on the post-graduate conducting course at the college twice winning the Adrian Boult conducting scholarship. His final year was spent as a repetiteur in the Opera School. Whilst at the College he was Assistant Organist at the Queen’s Chapel of the Savoy and then Holy Trinity, Sloane Street.
On leaving London Mark was appointed organist at Ellesmere College in Shropshire where he played the famous Tyne Dock Schulze organ. In 1989 he was appointed Director of Music at Rossall School in Lancashire. In 1994 he moved to Norfolk to Gresham’s School where he remained for 21 years.
As Director of Music at Gresham's he was very involved in the choral development of the school running five choirs as well as many other aspects of the school’s musical life. During this time he conducted Britten’s War Requiem, Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast and the Verdi Requiem among many other major choral works and musicals. He also took the choir on many tours to European countries performing in Geneva, Lausanne, Bern, Romainmotier and Montreux on two of the tours.
At the end of 2015 he left England to move to Geneva and in 2016 he was appointed assistant director of music at Holy Trinity church. He also played the organ in Bern Cathedral, the huge Fisk organ in Lausanne Cathedral and played for the Anglican church in Zurich for their Christmas carol services. Among the many concerts he played one of the most exciting was two performances on different organs of Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius with just organ accompaniment!
At the start of 2018 Mark returned to the UK and took up the appointment of Director of Music at St Andrew’s in Holt whilst still returning once a month to play in Geneva.
James Mooney-Dutton was educated at the Royal College of Music where he studied with Margaret Phillips and as a Music Scholar at Harrow School. He has held organ scholarships at Norwich Cathedral and the Royal Parish Church of St Martin-in-the-Fields. He began his musical education as a chorister at Westminster Abbey where he sang at the funeral of the late Diana, Princess of Wales.
As a recitalist James has performed in many venues in the UK and abroad such as St James’s Cathedral Toronto, Magdalen College Oxford, St Martin-in-the-Fields, Norwich Cathedral, Lincoln Cathedral, St Andrew’s Hall Norwich, Queen’s College Oxford and as well as performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. He has strong musical associations with Canada and regularly travels there to perform.
James is active as a freelance church musician and accompanist, working regularly with a variety of individuals and ensembles, and is accompanist to Stanmore, Northwood & Fakenham Choral Societies.
James has broadcast live on BBC Radios 3 and 4 as well as appearing on Songs of Praise.
James was for 11 years Director of Music at St Lawrence, Eastcote and since September 2017 has been Director of Music at St James’s Church, Bushey. When not engaged in all things musical James can be found spending time with his family, walking his dogs and managing, with his wife Laura, their family businesses - James Funeral Service in Harrow and Wisbech Funeral Service in Cambridgeshire.