Sweet music by the Med for county choirmaster

A chorister is making sweet music by the Med after landing a role in an Italian church.

Scott Phillips is currently choir director at an Italian church
Scott Phillips is currently choir director at an Italian church

Former Ellesmere College student and intern Scott Phillips landed the prestigious role of choir director at St Mark’s English Church in Florence.

Scott, 20, will remain there for a year, after which he will take his place at York University.

St Mark’s English Church is an Anglican church in Florence, a chaplaincy of the Church of England in the Diocese in Europe. It is a unique venue for weddings, opera, concerts, music and a wide range of artistic, literary and cultural events.

The church was closed for several months during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, which had such a devastating effect on Italy, and reopened for it’s first service on September 6.

Scott said: “I was a chorister at St David’s Cathedral for a number of years so the British choral tradition is in my blood. I also visited Italy on a choir tour with Ellesmere College.

“I saw the position advertised on Church Times, applied, had a phone interview in March then got offered the job and started on September 1 - I really love it out here.

“The position at St Mark’s is the most important role I’ve had to date, I head up the department, have two organists and the choir. It’s a great deal of responsibility but thoroughly enjoyable, and means I have needed to defer my place at York University until next year.

“I left Ellesmere College in July 2019 as a student but then went back as an intern and spent most of the last year working there - it was quite a strange thing to leave as a student and then go back as a member of staff.

“I was also the Organ Scholar at Shrewsbury Abbey from October last year through to this July. I like to think that I take every opportunity thrown at me to get as much experience under my belt as I can.

“During the last year I got the chance to do classroom teaching with students and now I’m running a department, so see all that side of things as well as working with people of all ages and abilities.

“St Mark’s is a lovely church and has a capacity of about 400 when absolutely packed. It’s a pre-Raphaelite building and the building the church is in was built in the 15th Century so has incredible architecture."

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