The English organist, Henry Fairs, received his earliest musical training as a chorister at Leominster Priory and studied at the Birmingham Conservatoire, where he graduated with First Class Honoursand was a prize-winner at the Fellowship diploma of the Royal College of Organists. A scholarship from the Countess of Munster Trust enabled postgraduate studies at Conservatoire NDR Rueil-Malmaison, at the Hochschule für Musik Köln, and in Vienna. Important teachers and influences have included David Saint, Susan Landale, Thierry Mechler, David Sanger and Michael Radulescu. He has won ten prizes in international organ competitions, including both first prize and special prize at the Odense International Organ Competition in Denmark (2007), the Prix Maurice Duruflé, Chartres; Concerto Gold Medal, Paris..
Henry Fairs combines positions at Birmingham Conservatoire and the Universities of Birmingham and St Andrews (UK) with a busy recital career. He has appeared in festivals throughout Europe and in North America, Canada, Russia and Japan, performing solo recitals, broadcasts (BBC, BR, MDR, Danish Radio) and concertos on both historic and modern instruments. He Fairs is regularly invited to give guest lectures and master-classes, as well as examiner and speaker: in 2011-2012 as a guest tutor and jury member at the Carl Nielsen International Festival and Competition, Denmark, Edinburgh Organ Academy, London Organ Day and the Royal Norwegian Academy, Oslo. He has also served as a jury member at Odense and Wadden Sea competitions, Denmark; Silbermann Wettbewerb, Germany. His students include a number of prize-winners in international competitions.
Henry Fairs enjoys playing and teaching a broad, eclectic repertoire: currently with a strong focus on the organ output of J.S. Bach (in a project involving research and performance of the organ works) and the chorale fantasias of Max Reger. In addition, he has in recent years been occupied with the performance of 19th- and 20th-century music. Past projects include: 2012-2015: J.S. Bach - organ works; 2011: Jehan Alain - complete organ works (performed in three concerts); 2011: 'Lisztomania' - Three Great Organ Works and Reubke Sonata (Birmingham and Edinburgh); 2002: Maurice Duruflé - organ works. During 2008 he was due to perform Messiaen's complete organ music in a series of six concerts for the Barber Institute of Fine Arts in Birmingham, but two concerts had to be rescheduled to 2009, due to injury.
Recent recordings and broadcasts: 2011: Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk (MDR) – broadcast Franz Liszt recital from the Merseburger Orgeltage, Merseburg Cathedral, Germany; 2009: Danish Radio (DR) - Live broadcast of Francis Poulenc Organ Concerto and Maurice Duruflé, Odense Symphony Orchestra, Denmark; 2008: Bayerischer Rundfunk – broadcast recital from the Internationale Orgelwoche, Nuremberg, Germany; 2007: CD Maurice Duruflé's complete organ music on the Cavaillé-Coll organ in Notre Dame d’Autueil, Paris (Naxos).