BA(Hons.) MMus QTS
Mark was brought up in Dudley, West Midlands and studied piano with Molly Childs. He then went on to read music at the Universities of Roehampton and East Anglia. Whilst in London, he studied piano with Peter Croser and organ with Richard Stangroom. It was his work with the latter that led to a deep and abiding interest in Choral Conducting and a Master of Music Degree in Choral and Orchestral Conducting.


As an accompanist, he was an organ scholar at three London colleges. He has worked with teachers at both the Royal Academy and the Royal College of Music. He has appeared at the Wigmore Hall and many other well known venues in and around London.


As a conductor, he has also appeared at many London venues conducting both choirs and orchestras and has worked with such notable conductors as Owain Arwell Hughes, Jeremy Jackman and Kuno Areng.


Calvin became the principle accompanist for the SEMVC in January 2017. Prior to that, since 2000, he was the deputy accompanist, joining the Choir for many of their concerts and tours.


He is privileged to have worked with Mark Jefferson for the Irving Stage Company and Bury Operatic Society, playing keyboards in the orchestra pit for various musical theatre shows.


His enthusiasm and flair for improvisation together with Mark’s artistry and musicianship brings new life to the Choir’s repertoire, as well as introducing more modern and contemporary pieces with the aim to encourage younger members to join.


His main profession is working for the Classical Ballet Faculty as a ballet accompanist for vocational students at Performers College in Essex, one of the main dance and musical theatre colleges in the country. He also works for Dance East in Ipswich for the Centre of Advanced Training in Ballet and Contemporary Dance, and for the Royal Ballet School Primary Steps outreach programme in Bury St Edmunds. He is a registered accompanist for the ISTD and the RAD. He often works as a company pianist playing for company class for Sir Matthew Bourne’s Red Shoe Company when they are on tour around the country.


Other engagements include playing lounge piano at the Lavenham Swan, and accompanist for the Jubilee Ladies Choir in Stowmarket.




John sadly passed away on the 18 December 2016.


John began his musical career at King Edward VI School, Bury St Edmunds and at St Mary’s, Rougham, his village church – both as a treble chorister and later as organist in his teenage years. After qualifying as a teacher in London (with distinction in Music), he taught for five years in Cambridge, serving also as organist at St Andrew’s Chesterton and as accompanist to the Mid Anglia Police Choir.


In 1973 he became a student at the Royal School of Church Music in Croydon, subsequently joining both the teaching and administrative staff and gaining his FRCO(CHM) diplomas and later the coveted Archbishops’ Diploma in Church Music. Concurrently he was organist and choirmaster at St John’s Selsdon.


In 1989 John returned to his native Suffolk, holding first the post of organist at Great Barton and then Benefice Organist for Rougham, Beyton and Hessett (where he has served for the past twenty years). In 1990 he began his long association with the St Edmundsbury Male Voice Choir; in 2007 he was awarded Honorary Life Membership for his significant contribution to the life of the choir. In 1996 he gained his BA(Hons) degree from the Open University plus the OU’s Diploma in Music.


A member of the Suffolk Organists’ Association since 1962, he served on its Council for a number of years, becoming its President, 1997–98. Having retired in 2012 from the staff of BBC Radio Suffolk after twenty years there, he continued to devote much of his time to his many outside interests, including his work as a parish councillor and as Secretary of the Old Burians’ Association (past students of his school).