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 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 succeeded Charles Burney as organist at St. Dionis-Backchurch, Fenchurch Street (demolished in 1878), in 1752.
An interesting aside for organists is the information provided in the church minutes for July 27, 1749: ". . . that the Salary of Organist be Thirty pounds p. Ann and that he be annually chose. . . .That the person who shall be chosen Organist shall attend in Person twice on every Sunday and on other usual Festivals, and to have no Deputy but in case of sickness."
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.
"Voluntary No. 9 in F Major" is really a three movement work consisting of a brief ceremonial introduction, "Adagio," followed by a sprightly "Allegro". The second movement is an expressive "Adagio" leading directly into the concluding "Allegro."
The adagio section reminded of some of the works of the great Henry Purcell.
The registration is essentially the "full organ" (with and without the Trumpet), except for the "Adagio" which is marked to be played upon the Swell.
The score is attached below, as well as a painting of St. Dionis-Backchurch, Fenchurch Street.
COMING ON SUNDAY - the great and massive Pentecost hymn "Veni Creator Spiritus", as set by Nicolas de Grigny.