E. J. Hopkins

E. J. Hopkins
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Short Name: E. J. Hopkins
Full Name: Hopkins, E. J. (Edward John), 1818-1901
Birth Year: 1818
Death Year: 1901

Dr Edward John Hopkins MusDoc United Kingdom 1818-1901. Born at Westminster, England, the son of a clarinetist with the Royal Opera House orchestra, he became an organist (as did two of his brothers) and a composer. In 1826 he became a chorister of the Chapel Royal and sang at the coronation of King William IV in Westminster Abbey. He also sang in the choir of St. Paul’s Cathedral, a double schedule requiring skill and dexterity. On Sunday evenings he would play the outgoing voluntary at St. Martin’s in-the-field. He left Chapel Royal in 1834 and started studying organ construction at two organ factories. He took an appointment at Mitcham Church as organist at age 16, winning an audition against other organists. Four years later he became organist at the Church of St. Peter, Islington. In 1841 he became organist at St. Luke’s, Berwick St., Soho. Two Years later he was organist at Temple Church, which had a historic organ (built in 1683). He held this position for 55 years. In 1845 he married Sarah Lovett, and they had four sons and five daughters. He was closely associated with the Bach Society and was organist for the first English performances of Bach’s St. Matthew Passion. In 1855 he collaborated with Edward Rimbault publishing “The organ, its history and construction” (3 editions 1855-70-77). In 1864 he was one of the founders of the “College of organists”. In 1882 he received an honorary Doctorate of Music from the Archbishop of Canterbury. He composed 30+ hymn tunes and some psalm chants, used by the Church of England. He died in London, England.

John Perry


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