John Bennett (c. 1735 – London, September 1784) was an English organist and composer.
Details of Bennett's life are limited, but it is known that he died in September 1784, after serving as organist at St. Dionis Backchuch Fenchurch in London, for over thirty years. He had been a pupil of Johann Christoph Pepusch.
As the typical versatile eighteenth-century English musician, he played the organ and the viola, taught the harpsichord, and performed at Drury Lane Theatre as a singer in the chorus and as a dancer.
According to Thomas Mortimer's The Universal Director (1763), he lived at Queen-square Bloomsbury, and succeededCharles Burney as organist at St. Dionis-Backchurch, Fenchurch Street (demolished in 1878), in 1752.
The Ten Voluntaries for the Organ or Harpsichord are his only works known to this day; they were published by the composer in 1758, and printed a number of times since. In the last fifty years, various selections from them have printed in collections: H. Diack Johnstone published numbers 9 and 10 in 1966 (Novello, London); Beechey published (nos 2, 5, 7, 8, 9 & 10) in 1969, and Diack Johnstone also published 6 of them (nos 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, & 10) in 1988. A new complete edition of the entire set has been published in 2002, in Cambridge (UK).
Five copies survive in the British Isles: in the British Museum, the Oxford University Faculty Library, the Euing Library at Glasgow University, the Gerald Finzi Collection at St. Andrews University, and the Shaw – Hellier Collection.
This first Voluntary is a very charming piece, especially the slow and stately introduction.
I used Arlesheim because of the fine Diapasons and Trumpets.