Summer Singing

An international singing course in Portugal

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SIMON CARRINGTON, Yale University professor emeritus, has enjoyed a long and distinguished career in music, performing as singer, double bass player and conductor, first in the UK, and latterly in the USA and round the world. From 2003 to 2009 he was professor of choral conducting at Yale University and director of the Yale Schola Cantorum, a 24-voice chamber choir which he brought to national and now international prominence, attracting the interest of his successors, Masaaki Suzuki, director of the Bach Collegium Japan and David Hill, conductor of the BBC Singers and the Bach Choir in London. During his Yale tenure he led the introduction of a new graduate voice degree for singers specializing in oratorio, early music and chamber ensemble, and, with his faculty colleagues, he guided two Yale graduate students to their first prize wins in consecutive conducting competitions at American Choral Directors Association National Conventions. From 2001 until his Yale appointment, he was director of choral activities at the New England Conservatory, Boston, where he was selected by the students for the Krasner Teaching Excellence Award and from where he received an Honorary Doctorate in 2014, and from 1994 to 2001 he held a similar position at the University of Kansas. Simon now keeps up an active schedule as a freelance conductor and choral clinician, leading workshops and master classes round the world.

JONATHN AYERST started choral training in the cathedrals of Truro and Wells aged 7 years. Since 1995 he has pursued a career as solo pianist, organist and choral trainer.

In 2000, Jonathan was appointed principal pianist of Remix Ensemble Casa da Música, with whom he has participated, also as soloist, in major festivals and projects throughout Europe. With Remix Ensemble, he has worked with conductors Peter Rundel, Emilio Pomarico, Reinbert de Leeuw, Stephan Albury, Peter and Martin Andre.

Since 2010, Jonathan founded the vocal ensemble Capella Duriensis now recognised as international ambassadors of Portuguese culture. With Capella Duriensis, Jonathan has appeared in major music festivals throughout Portugal, the Açores islands, and completed several tours to the UK, performing in Wells and Bristol cathedrals and the Netherlands (Fabulous Fringe of the Oude Muziek Festival, Utrecht). More recently, the signed a contract for three CDS with the record label Naxos entitled Portuguese Vocal Masterpieces of the 16th and 17th Centuries.

In 2009 Jonathan recieved the Sawyer and Durrant prizes from the Royal College of Organists, and in 2011 was awarded a fellowship of the same institution. In 2016 was awarded the Charles Alan Bryars Organ Scholarship by Sheffield University for his PhD studies into the psychology of improvisation.


Iniciou os seus estudos como contratenor na Academia de Música de Viana do Castelo, com o professor Rui Taveira. Completou o Curso de Canto em 1991. Frequentou cursos de aperfeiçoamento em canto com José Oliveira Lopes, Matthias Gerchen, Max van Egmond, Lorraine Nubar, Jill Feldman e ainda Lute Songs, com Jakob Lindberg. Colaborou como solista com a Orquestra de Câmara da Universidade de Vigo, Orquestra Sine Nomine, Orquestra da Escola Profissional de Música de Viana do Castelo, Orquestra Sinfónica Norte Cultural, Orquestra Artave e Orquestra Sinfonieta (ESMAE). Gravou para o programa "Sons da História" e para a etiqueta Musicália, o Cancioneiro de Elvas, com o qual obteve uma excelente crítica da revista Goldberg. 
Paralelamente ao canto, tem desenvolvido  uma intensa actividade de direcção coral. É desde 2001 maestro titular do Coro da Academia de Música de Viana do Castelo e estudou direcção coral, na Association  British Choral Conducting (UK), com Peter Broadbent, Theeres Hibbard e Jo McNally.
Actualmente exerce funções docentes como assistente convidado na Universidade do Minho, no curso de Direcção Coral.