Skip to menu
Site map

Seasons Greetings
from the
Anglo-Japanese Society of Wessex

An Unincorporated Association

Patron:
Kyoko Gledhill

Honorary Patrons:
Yukiko Shinohara (BMus, MMus), George Logan (Dr Evadne Hinge), Alexander Rosenblatt, Kotono Sato (BMus(Hon), MMus, Dip. RAM, LRAM), Michael Soumei Coxall

Director:
Godfrey King

Advisors:
Shakti, Jackie Wright, Kotono Sato, Yukiko Shinohara, Kazue Yanagida

Legal Advisor:
Lester Kan (see Lester Dominic contact details below)

Web Site:
Phil Ronan, Steve Rice

Established 1996

Legal advice

Our official legal advisors are Lester Dominic Solicitors.

Members and associates are entitled to a free consultation across the range of Lester Dominic’s services including immigration related matters. (Contact the society for qualification procedures.)

Special Features

Pascal's Triangle

Click to play video

Carol I Need You (click to play video)

See Pascal's Triangle feature on our Audio and Video Archive page.

Musician's Chapel Dedication

See the Musicians Chapel dedication January 2nd, 1955 on our Events page.

What we do

Since 1996, the Anglo-Japanese Society of Wessex has been promoting Japanese culture and Japanese artists in events throughout the Wessex region (which extends from the south west of England as far as Southwark in London).

We aim to further mutual awareness through the promotion and organising of our own events and of others including helping to provide information linking members and the public with other organizations sharing the same ideals. We represent a number of Japanese and Japanese orientated entertainers and cultural presenters for the theatre, festivals and clubs, and cultural presenters for educational establishments etc. We seek to serve all aspects of Anglo-Japanese affairs in the region and beyond, and welcome your enquiries. We are a voluntary organization and all funds raised go into society funds. Corporate, Arts organizations, and individual funding will be welcome as well as membership enquiries.

Now in our 17th year, we have taken part in many memorable events that can be found in our events archive.

Since the move to London in 2004 the AJSW has organized several hundred concerts in London alone. Currently our Wednesday lunchtime concerts at St. Sepulchre, the Musicians Church on Holborn Viaduct (near St. Pauls Cathedral) frequently feature Japanese musicians who are some of the cream of Japanese classical young musicians visiting or residing in the UK bringing wonderful memories of great concerts and fond friendships.These concerts also involve musicians from all over the world.

In more recent years we have developed our own groups featuring musicians who have played recitals for us with the piano groups '4Tune' (4 hands on 2 piano), 'Inzpir8tion' (8 hands on 2 pianos) and the 'AJSW Chamber Music Ensemble' as well as the traditional Japanese music and instrument group 'The Anglo-Japanese Collective'.

We also help to arrange cultural presentations by Japanese performers and cultural events for organisations including corporate functions. Our growing links enable us to organise almost everything Japanese.

Events at St Dunstan-in-the-West

This page lists the forthcoming events organized by the AJSW. Our previous events are listed in the event archive.

Show events at:

We do not have any future events scheduled for St Dunstan-in-the-West at present.

AJSW Concerts

We organise many concerts per year including at St Sepulchre (Musicians Church) London, Bristol Cathedral and St Georges Int Concert Venue (Bristol)

More information

All concert and booking of artist enquiries to our society address.

St Sepulchre: The Musicians Church

Although we are no longer holding lunch concerts at St Sepulchre, the Musicians Church, it's history and it's place within the Church of England should not be overlooked or neglected. The Bishop of London signed a document soon after he took up his position granting its special status. Within the church was the 'Musicians Chapel'. The Bishop of London is a traditionalist and has a preference for classical music.

The departed musicians recorded in the Musicians Chapel's Remembrance Book deserve respect. They represent music that has lasted for centuries of the highest order. The musicians we brought there reflected their predecessors' art and musical skills. Sir Henry Wood (buried there) and Dame Nellie Melba (a window dedicated to her) symbolize that the music there should reach for the heights. It became difficult to maintain such standards especially the necessary organizational consistency required for such musicians to give of their best and attract a regular audience at levels conducive to a welcoming and warm environment. From our first concert there on October 31st, 2012 to our last on July 23rd, 2014 enabled some memorable musical moments by a number of remarkable musicians ready to give of their best.

So in memoriam to all those wonderful musicians past and present we mark our place in its history in trying to keep its status and place as intended.

The Musicians' Chapel was dedicated Jan 2nd 1955. A rare recording of a BBC News Item of the historic ceremony was discovered in the church in 2012. The Albert Hall Proms founder Sir Henry Wood is buried in the chapel. He was organist at St Sepulchre when he was 14 before he founded the world famous proms which he conducted for 50 years. Dignitaries, including his successor and friend Sir Malcolm Sargent, attended the dedication leading to St Sepulchre's status as The National Musicians Church.

Click to play video
Musicians' Chapel Dedication
(click on image to play video)

The clip below comes from a 1936 British feature film entitled "Calling the Tune", a story about the development of the gramophone industry, and Sir Henry Wood and his Queen's Hall Light Orchestra, seen here, were among the guest stars.

Click to play video
Sir Henry Wood conducts Shepherds Hey (Grainger)
(click on image to play video)


We thank the National Churches Trust for an article in the week starting 12th July '14 in praise of our efforts at St Sepulchre printed the week prior to our departure!

Please visit their web site at www.nationalchurchestrust.org

Musical Traditions

St Sepulchre's continues to cultivate links to musicians and musical institutions today through The Friends of the Musicians' Chapel, and a wide range of concerts and recitals.

Its musical traditions continue to thrive thanks to the help of Anglo Japanese Society of Wessex (AJSW), the main organiser of lunchtime concerts at the church.

Since 1996, the Anglo-Japanese Society of Wessex has been promoting Japanese culture and Japanese artists in events throughout the Wessex region and beyond, which variously extended from the south west of England to include London and its surrounding area. It also now organises events beyond that region and incorporates musicians from all over the world whilst retaining its original focus.

Godfrey King, Director of AJSW, has been dedicating his time to promoting the excellent talents of young artists from across the globe for over ten years. He said: "After organising hundreds of mainly lunch concerts in London Churches I came to St Sepulchre to build yet another lunch concert programme from October 2012."

"Lunch concerts support the church concert programme where it is hired by various orchestras, ensembles and choral groups. And last September, following an interegnum, the Rev David Ingle was installed as the vicar. Religious services were restored to St Sepulchre's growing reputationbefitting the largest parish church in the City of London. A personal wish is for that to stretch to a new concert grand piano as well!"

"To our lunch concerts the finest musicians come from all over the world to the UK to study, visit or live. Our evening concert 'SHOWCASE' on Friday July 18th of our own AJSW Chamber Music Ensemble 7.30 follows a lunch concert at 1.10 by flutist Yukari Yamamura and pianist Yukiko Shinohara indicating the wealth of that talent. Musicians from Japan, Korea, Spain, UK, Belarus and Bulgaria play for our fourth CME concert."

"Do come join us at St Sepulchre for that 'Great Experience' and help build up our audiences by showing your appreciation of the musicians' talents."