The Choir and Music Staff

The Choir of St Mary the Virgin, Nottingham is acclaimed as one of the finest Anglican church choirs in the country. Typically, the choir sings three services a week (Wednesday Evensong (6.15pm), Sunday Eucharist (10.45am) and Sunday Evensong (6.30pm) as well as regular concerts throughout the year, upholding a tradition of outstanding choral music in Nottingham.

The choir has made a number of recordings over recent years including Mater Christi, a disc of Marian motets produced by Regent Records (2015) and A St Mary’s Christmas, a disc of sacred and secular music for Christmas (2017). Beyond Nottingham, the choir has sung in Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s Cathedral and toured across Europe, most recently to France, Italy and Germany.


Director of Music

John Keys has been Director of Music at St Mary’s since 1984. In that time the artistic life of the church has bloomed in his hands and continues to evolve.
As well as being responsible for the provision of music for services at St Mary’s, being Artistic Director of the Orchestra of the Restoration and having a heavy teaching load, he is in great demand as accompanist, continuo player and recitalist.

Assistant Director of Music

Francis Shepherd was appointed in February 2020, having previously worked at Truro Cathedral for several years as a Tenor Lay Vicar. Before that, Francis read Music at University College, Oxford. During that time he was Organ Scholar at St Barnabas, Jericho, and a Choral Exhibitioner in the Choir of Merton College, Oxford. Outside of his work at St Mary’s, Francis is a freelance recording engineer and producer and is the Advertising Manager for Organists’ Review magazine.

Organ Scholar

Edward Byrne (2019-2020)