About Paul Halley:
PAUL HALLEY was born in Romford, Essex in 1952 and six years later emigrated with his family to Ontario. He received his early musical training in the Choir of Men and Boys of St. Matthew’s Anglican Church, Ottawa, under the direction of Gerald Wheeler and Brian Law, and at the age of sixteen was made an Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto. Having been awarded the organ scholarship at Trinity College, Cambridge, Halley received his M.A. with prizes in composition and performance, and was made a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists, winning first prize in the College examinations.
Via a circuitous route involving two years teaching in Jamaica, W.I., Halley became Organist and Choirmaster at The Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City where, over a twelve-year period, he transformed the Cathedral’s music program into a rich combination of classical and contemporary music. Concurrent with his tenure at the Cathedral, Halley became a principal member of The Paul Winter Consort, and earned five Grammy Awards for his contributions as featured writer and performer on dozens of Consort recordings. Following his departure from the Cathedral in 1989, Halley settled in rural northwestern Connecticut and in 1991 founded the not-for-profit arts organization, Joyful Noise, Inc., the acclaimed children’s choir, Chorus Angelicus, and the adult chamber choir, Gaudeamus. Halley also became Director of Music at Trinity Episcopal Church, Torrington, CT where he inaugurated the Choral and Organ Scholars program in conjunction with Yale University’s Institute of Sacred Music. In 2007, Halley relocated to Halifax, Nova Scotia to become Director of Music at both the University of King’s College and St. George’s Anglican Church (through 2010), as well as University Musician at Atlantic School of Theology. The semi-professional Chapel Choir of the University of King’s College, comprised of lay clerks and choral scholars in the British tradition, is gaining a reputation under Halley’s direction as one of the best choral ensembles in North America, receiving airplay of concerts in the “King’s at the Cathedral” series on CBC.
Halley’s choral and instrumental compositions are available from Pelagos Incorporated, the recording, music publishing, and arts management company for which he acts as Creative Director. Halley’s compositions have been performed and licensed by many notable artists and organizations including Sony Entertainment, Windham Hill/BMG Music, the New Jersey Symphony, John Williams and the Boston Pops Orchestra, The Louisville Symphony, Canadian Brass, Margie Gillis, Jennifer Muller and The Works, and numerous international band and choral festivals. Halley receives annual Composer Awards from ASCAP, and his recordings and performances are frequently aired on NPR and CBC. Halley is often engaged as a guest artist by organizations throughout the United States and Canada, and is commissioned to write three to four new works per year.
Halley lives with his wife and business partner, Meg Race, on the South Shore of Nova Scotia. Together with their combined family of six children, singers and sailors all, they enjoy exploring the waters of Mahone Bay in a traditional Cape Cod catboat which rejoices in the name, “Magnificat”.