John Paul Farahat fosters a diverse career as organist, improviser, accompanist, and conductor. He holds the post of Director of Music and Principal Organist of Saint Basil’s Collegiate Church, the collegiate church of the University of Saint Michael’s College in the University of Toronto. He further serves as one of five cathedral organists for Saint Michael’s Cathedral Basilica, Toronto. He sits on both the National Council and the Board of Directors of the Royal Canadian College of Organists.
Active as an international concert organist, John Paul Farahat’s notable past engagements include the Cathédrale Notre-Dame and Église St-Eustache in Paris, the International Organ Festival Toulouse Les Orgues and the Cathédrale Saint-Étienne in Toulouse, the Organ Festival of Chamonix, Saint Paul's Cathedral and Westminster Abbey, London, as well as Coventry Cathedral, UK, the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin, Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, and Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC, Saint Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in Buffalo, Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, as well as the ORGANIX festival and the Cathedral Church of Saint James in Toronto, and the Cathedral of Saint Hyacinthe in Québec.
The leading expert on the music of Victor Togni, John Paul Farahat’s seminal text Precomposed and Extemporized: Rediscovering the Life and Improvisatory Work of Canadian Organist Victor Togni (1935 – 1965) connects Togni to his European teachers, including Jean-Jacques Grunenwald, Jean Langlais, Olivier Messiaen, Marcel Dupré, Rolande Falcinelli, Jeanne Demessieux, and Fernando Germani. The text catalogues hundreds of previously-unknown archival documents, providing a full-length biography, several reconstructed improvisations from historical tapes, and an in-depth analysis of the musical language and improvisatory forms of Togni’s Five Liturgical Inventions and improvisations as they related to his unfinished organ improvisation method book.
John Paul Farahat holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Toronto, where he studied organ, harpsichord, and improvisation with Kevin Komisaruk. He received additional instruction from Olivier Latry, Peter Williams, Martin Haselböck, Noam Sivan, and Thomas Murray.