Terence Charlston is an internationally acknowledged specialist performer on early keyboard instruments, particularly harpsichord, clavichord and organ.

He studied music at Keble College, University of Oxford, where he was organ scholar, and then harpsichord at the Royal Academy of Music. His broad career encompasses many complementary roles including solo and chamber musician, choral and orchestral director, teacher and academic researcher. His extensive discography reflects his passionate interest in keyboard music of all types and styles. He was a member of the quartet London Baroque between 1995 and 2007 and the ensemble Florilegium between 2011 and 2019. In recent years, he has developed a particularly close affinity with the clavichord and is currently recording 20th- and 21st-century music, including his own compositions.

Charlston has become an important advocate of European keyboard music of the 17th and 18th centuries and his numerous publications include editions and recordings of Carlo Ignazio Monza, Albertus Bryne, William Byrd’s My Ladye Nevells Booke, Matthew Locke’s complete organ and harpsichord music, and Froberger: Complete Fantasias and Canzona on clavichord. His Mersenne’s Clavichord and The Harmonious Thuringian albums are considered exemplary models of practice-led research, drawing together meticulous organological and musicological enquiry with intuitive performance insight. His current research interests focus on the analysis of keyboard music, particularly counterpoint, as an aural and performed experience.

A dedicated and much sought-after teacher, Charlston has played a significant role at several prestigious British conservatoires and universities. He is currently Chair of Historical Keyboard Instruments and Professor of Harpsichord at the Royal College of Music. Previously he taught at the Royal Academy of Music, where he founded the Department of Historical Performance in 1995, and was International Visiting Tutor in Harpsichord at the Royal Northern College of Music until 2019. He was made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in 1996 and received the honorary award of Fellow of the Royal College of Music in 2020. Over the last decade, he has helped to guide the exciting young vocal ensemble Amici Voices and has guest directed many of their concerts and recording projects.

Photo by Ben McKee