Clive Driskill-Smith is one of the leading organists of his generation. Hailed as a "star of a new generation" (Evening Standard), critics have praised his "blazing technique" and "unbelievable virtuosity" (American Guild of Organists) and described his performances as "intensely moving" and "truly breathtaking" (Organo Pleno Melbourne).
Born in 1978, Clive was awarded the Sheila Mossman Memorial Prize by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music before winning a Music Scholarship to Eton College in 1990. From 1992 to 1994, he played the bassoon in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and in the National Youth Chamber Orchestra. After a year as Organ Scholar at Winchester Cathedral and Assistant Organist at Winchester College, he went up to Christ Church, Oxford University, as the Christopher Tatton Organ Scholar. While at Christ Church, he was awarded the ARCM (Associate of the Royal College of Music) diploma in Piano Performance and the FRCO (Fellow of the Royal College of Organists) diploma with the Limpus, Shinn and Durrant Prizes and the Worshipful Company of Musicians' Silver Medal. He graduated with a First Class Honours degree in Music in 1999 and with the MPhil in 2001.
Winner of the Royal College of Organists' Performer of the Year Competition in 2000 and the Calgary International Organ Competition in 2002, Clive has performed in the UK, France, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Norway, Finland, South Africa, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Canada, the USA, South America, Australia and New Zealand. A pupil of David Sanger and Hans Fagius, he was awarded a Travelling Scholarship by the Royal College of Organists in 1999 and the W. T. Best Scholarship by the Worshipful Company of Musicians in 2002. Both of these have funded further study on the Continent with Marie-Claire Alain, Guy Bovet, Andrea Marcon, Luigi Tagliavini and Dr Harald Vogel.
Clive's repertoire spans six centuries and includes the complete works of Maurice Duruflé and Olivier Messiaen. His performances have been broadcast in Australia, Finland, Japan, Sweden, the UK and the USA. He has recorded two solo CDs: The Organs of Eton College, released on the Priory label in 2004, and Fiat Lux, released on the Herald label in 2006.
Clive is a member of the American Guild of Organists, a Freeman of the City of London and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. He is currently Sub-Organist at Christ Church Cathedral in Oxford, where he accompanies the choir under the direction of Stephen Darlington. He plays for the daily services as well as the choir's many recordings, broadcasts and tours.
Clive also performs with American percussionist Joseph Gramley in an organ and percussion duo called Organized Rhythm.
"A master performer in a range of musical styles. His playing is immaculate."
Organists' Review, England