Director of Music
A graduate of the Queensland Conservatorium, the Vienna Conservatorium and the Vienna University of Music and Performing Arts, Wrench gained global recognition as a prize-winner of international competitions in Melbourne (1st Prize 1985), Dublin (2nd Prize 1988 & 1990), St Alban’s (Audience Prize 1989), Calgary (European Finalist 1990) & Odense (1st Prize 1992). He returned to Australia in 1991 as Lecturer in Organ at the Queensland Conservatorium.
Equally skilled as soloist, liturgical musician chamber player, and pedagogue, Wrench has given solo recitals throughout Australia (including the Melbourne International Festival of Organ and Harpsichord, the Sydney Festival, the Brisbane Festival, Brisbane Baroque, the New England Bach Festival, Organs of the Ballarat Goldfields), Mofo, and the Barraba Festival; and concerto performances with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, the Camerata of St John’s, the Queensland Youth Symphony, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and the Adelaide Chamber Orchestra.
20 international tours have taken Wrench to Austria (incl. St Stephen’s Cathedral, Augustinerkirche, Klosterneuburg), Canada, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, England (incl. Westminster Abbey, King’s College-Cambridge & Bournemouth International Festival), Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Norway and Sweden.
Wrench is principal organist with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra and continuo player with the Badinarie Players and Camerata of St John’s. He has made numerous broadcasts on ABC ClassicFM and MBS community radio networks was awarded the Lord Mayor’s Australia Day Cultural Award in 2008 for his contribution to the musical life of Brisbane. Wrench commands a broad solo repertoire spanning many centuries including the complete organ works of J.S.Bach, Brahms, Buxethude, Mendelssohn, Mozart & Duruflé. His Melba Recordings SACD of J.S.Bach’s Six Organ Sonatas at the Garrison Church, Copenhagen received rave reviews from around the globe.
Wrench began playing the harmonium within his home parish of All Saints, Chermside at the age of 10 before becoming Organist at St Michael & All Angels, New Farm (1975-77) and Organist & Choirmaster at Christ Church St Lucia (1977-82). Following post-graduate study in Vienna, Christopher held church music positions at St Salvator Catholic Church, Vienna (1984-86), Christ Church, Vienna (1986-90) and St Mary’s Kangaroo Point (1994-2012).
Christopher is married to renowned choral director Emily Cox.
Organists/Music Directors at Christ Church
2013-present Christopher Wrench
2010-2012 Greg Mayer
1994-2009 Graeme Morton
1988-1993 Ian McKinley
1983-1988 Graeme Morton
1982-1983 Duncan Frewin
1977-1982 Christopher Wrench
1970-1977 Dr Ralph Morton
1967-1970 Ian Bridge