Jonathan Vaughn was born in Croydon in 1981 into a musical British-American family. As a boy he sang in the Addington Palace Choristers under Martin How whose encouragement led to his appointment as Organ Scholar at Croydon Parish Church at the age of thirteen. He attended St Olave’s Grammar School in Orpington, where he began his organ studies at the age of eleven with Simon Williams and before reaching seventeen he had gained both diplomas from the Royal College of Organists, winning most of the prizes. On leaving school Jonathan spent a year as Organ Scholar at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.
For four years he was Organ Scholar at St John’s College, Cambridge under Dr Christopher Robinson and Dr David Hill. At St John’s, Jonathan accompanied and assisted in the direction of the world famous choir, toured around the world, and accompanied broadcasts and recordings, including acclaimed performances of the works of Sir Lennox Berkeley and Sir Edward Elgar on the Naxos label. At Cambridge he became increasingly busy as a conductor, including being an Assistant Conductor of Cambridge University Musical Society. During this time he studied with Dame Gillian Weir.
On leaving St John’s he spent three years as Assistant Director of Music at St Edmundsbury Cathedral. While at St Edmundsbury Cathedral he played for services commemorating the completion of the Cathedral Tower, and was Musical Director of the St Edmundsbury Singers and the Phoenix Singers.
For nearly ten years he was Assistant Organist of Wells Cathedral in Somerset where he leaves a legacy of many CD recordings as accompanist, notably of contemporary composers, and toured internationally with the Cathedral Choir. In 2009 he played the organ and directed the choir for the funeral of Harry Patch, the Last Fighting Tommy. After serving for six months as Interim Associate Organist of The Cathedral of All Saints, Albany NY, he took up his current position as Associate Director of Music at Christ Church, Greenwich CT in September 2017.
Jonathan regularly performs recitals around the USA and the UK, and has also played in The Netherlands and Poland. He was for seven years Musical Director of the Somerset Singers, a ninety strong choir whose performances included Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius and Verdi’s Requiem, and taught the organ at Wells Cathedral School. His debut CD recording, Wagner at the Organ, was released to mark the composer's bicentenary in 2013, and a recording of transcriptions of Tchaikovsky was released in early 2018.
Wow! ... Incredible!
If you like Wagner. If you like the sound of the pipe organ. Heck, if you have a beating heart, you have to hear this. [Jean-Yves Duperron, Classical Music Sentinel June 2013]
Tchaikovsky at the Organ [Regent Records 2018]
Before the Ending of the Day Exon Singers [Rubicon 2017]
A Wells Christmas Wells Cathedral Choir [Resonus Classics 2016]
The Armour of Light: The Choral Music of Gary Davison Wells Cathedral Choir [Regent Records 2015]
Bob Chilcott: St John Passion Wells Cathedral Choir [Signum 2015]
Wagner at the Organ [Regent Records 2013]
Judith Bingham: Choral Music Wells Cathedral Choir [Hyperion 2013]
Jingle Wells Wells Cathedral Choir [Regent Records 2012]
Bob Chilcott: Requiem and other choral works Wells Cathedral Choir [Hyperion 2012]
Songs of Sunshine Wells Cathedral Choir [Regent Records 2011]
James MacMillan: Choral Music Wells Cathedral Choir [Hyperion 2011]
Jonathan Dove: Choral Music Wells Cathedral Choir [Hyperion 2010]
Flame Celestial: Choral Music by David Bednall Wells Cathedral Choir [Regent Records 2010]
Awake up, my glory: Choral and Organ Music by Philip Moore Exon Singers [Regent Records 2010]
William Mathias: Choral Music Wells Cathedral Choir [Hyperion 2009]
Sir Charles Wood: St Mark Passion The Choir of Jesus College, Cambridge [Naxos 2008]
Christus Vincit: The Music of Colin Mawby The Choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge [Kevin Mayhew 2006]
Meditation The Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge [SJCR 2004]
Music for Men’s Voices The Gentlemen of St John’s College, Cambridge [Priory 2004]
Sir Edward Elgar: Sacred Choral Music The Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge [Naxos 2004]
Sir Lennox Berkeley: Sacred Choral Music The Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge [Naxos 2003]
Rejoice for Joy Berkshire Youth Choir [Berkshire Young Musicians Trust 2000]
Day by Day: Choral and Organ Music by Martin How Croydon Parish Church Choir [Regent Records 1998]
O God, my heart is ready Croydon Parish Church Choir [Moon Recording Studios 1996]