Beds, Herts & Bucks

David Bowie St Albans Cathedral organ tribute viewed by millions

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionMural photograph is copyright of Getty Images

An organist's tribute to singer David Bowie has been described as "utterly breathtaking", "amazing" and "tear-jerkingly beautiful" by some of the 2.6 million people who have viewed it.

St Albans Cathedral put organ scholar Nicholas Freestone's version of the singer's Life on Mars on Facebook after his death was announced on Monday.

Millions have viewed the video and thousands have commented.

Mr Freestone, 24, from Ipswich, said he was "humbled" by the reaction.

Bowie died in New York at the age of 69 after an 18-month battle with cancer.

St Albans Cathedral posted Mr Freestone's organ tribute on Monday, saying: "A special tribute to David Bowie who died today.

"Thank you to our marvellous organ scholar."

Image copyright Getty/Steven Craven/Geograph
Image caption More than two million people have listened to the cathedral organist's tribute to David Bowie
Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Fans laid floral tributes at a mural in Brixton, Bowie's birthplace

The cathedral's Facebook page has been flooded with more than 2,800 comments and millions have watched the film.

'Heartfelt and unique'

"Bravo maestro, you moved me to tears. My favourite Bowie song as never heard before. Soaring and stunning, thank you," one person wrote.

Another said: "Nicholas Freestone... that was utterly breathtaking. l have a lump in my throat the size of a rock and my eyes are leaking.

"Of all the tributes l've seen today for David Bowie, yours was glorious. Simple, heartfelt and unique. Thank you."

Mr Freestone replied: "I'm the organist playing this. It's rather humbling to read your comments. Thanks everyone for sharing."

He said it was an "impromptu performance" which the cathedral invited people to join via Twitter.

"It then went very mad, very quickly."

A spokesman for the Diocese of St Albans said: "Our organ scholar has proved brilliantly adept at playing Life on Mars with just a hint of a mournful voice and a prayer for a departed soul."

Related Topics

More on this story

Around the BBC

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites