Staff

ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

Jeff Wynn Davies

JEFFREY WYNN DAVIES

Jeffrey Wynn Davies continues to enhance his already established reputation as one of this country’s busiest and most versatile choral conductors and trainers.

He directs both the award winning vocal group/chamber choir Canzonetta – former BBC Sainsbury’s Choir of the Year – and Canzonetta Children’s Choirs. The former appears regularly at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall. Recent performances there include John Rutter Mass of the Children (Manchester premiere), Verdi Four Sacred Pieces, the Durufle Requiem and the opera Mary Seacole for Black Arts Alliance, Messiah and the world premiere of Tunde Jegede’s The Calling (with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra). He also directed the adult and children’s choruses in the world premiere of Peter Ash’s opera Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

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jeff-conductingCanzonetta has broadcast frequently on BBC Radio 3, and has made several television appearances for both BBC and ITV. The group’s recordings include the music of Andrew Carter – a 60th birthday tribute, available on the Guild label, and, more recently, Carey Blyton’s complete chamber choir music for Upbeat, and a double CD of Gordon Lawson’s church music for Chameleon Arts. In addition to appearances at the Cheltenham and Harrogate International Festivals – including a Russian choral programme at his third Harrogate appearance – he has acted as Chorus Director to both Pavarotti and Carreras.

Between 2001-2007, he directed the internationally renowned Manchester Boys’ Choir with whom he appeared on many major platforms including the Bridgewater Hall, and Leeds and Huddersfield Town Halls. The Boys’ major appearances during that period included the Berlioz Te Deum and Kodaly Psalmus Hungaricus with Huddersfield Choral Society, a Radio 3 broadcast performance of Britten’s War Requiem from Leeds Town Hall (BBC Philharmonic Orchestra) and his Spring Symphony at the Chester International Festival. There were also appearances with Evelyn Glennie and Aled Jones, and tours to the Czech Republic (2004), northern Germany (2005), Ontario and Michigan (2006) and, in May 2007, a guest appearance at the Cornwall International Male Choir Festival in Truro Cathedral.

He is in demand as a guest conductor and choral trainer, working again this year for most of the major British choral organisations at weekend workshops etc. He has directed seven choral festivals for the BBC, and has adjudicated at many choral competitions in the UK, Ireland, and also in Scandinavia and South Africa. He has sat on the panel of judges at the Prague and Verona International Choir Festivals, the National Eisteddfod of Wales, the National Festival of Music for Youth, the National Male Voice Choir Competition, the Malta International Choral Festival and the Jersey International Choir Competition.

He has served on a number of national bodies, including the BBC Central Music Advisory Committee, and the Association of British Choral Directors, for whose Millennium Convention he was Artistic Director. In 2007 he directed the Association’s International Gala Concert in Chester Cathedral.

 

ADMINISTRATOR

Fiona Clucas

FIONA CLUCAS

All the planning and administration of Cranleigh Choral Week is managed by Fiona Clucas. In recent years, however, she has also established a considerable reputation, particularly in the North of England, as a versatile soprano soloist.

In 2005 she sang Elijah opposite Sir Willard White in York Minster. Other work includes Rossini Petite Messe Solennelle, Carmina Burana, Messiah, Poulenc and Vivaldi Glorias, Haydn Theresa Mass and Paukenmesse, Bach Christmas Oratorio, Mozart Requiem, and the Bach and Rutter Magnificat settings. There were also performances of Britten Rejoice in the Lamb and Hymn to St. Cecilia in Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, Mozart Requiem and Jonathan Willcocks’ Lux Perpetua in Guildford Cathedral, and Brahms’ Requiem / Vaughan Williams’ Benedicite in Ripon Cathedral.

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She also created the role of Mrs Trout in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Peter Ash) – a world premiere – and, in 2004, was soprano soloist in the first Manchester performance of Rutter’s Mass of the Children, both also in the Bridgewater Hall.

Fiona now has a busy schedule, not only as a performer but as a choral/vocal agent and voice tutor. She is the administrator of the award-winning chamber choir Canzonetta as well as managing and tutoring the Canzonetta Children’s Choir. She is also the vocal studies coach at Withington Girls’ School, Manchester – one of the UK’s leading independent schools.

She is equally at home as a recitalist and has performed as soloist with the late in a Manchester Evening News Arena performance. In addition she has appeared regularly with a number of leading brass bands and concert choirs throughout the North of England and in Wales.

 

CHORAL TUTORS

Marcus_Pashley

MARCUS PASHLEY

Marcus Pashley read Music at Manchester University developing a passion for working with choirs. In Manchester he directed and considerably developed the work of the University Chamber Choir, founded the New Manchester Bach Ensemble and won the university’s coveted Sir Thomas Beecham Medal for achievement in music.

He has held the posts of Music Director of the Bradford Choristers and subsequently Chorus Director of Central Festival Opera preparing performances of Puccini: La Boheme and Bizet: Carmen for Opera Holland Park. As a founder member of the 1993 BBC Choir of the Year Canzonetta, he has performed throughout the UK and abroad.

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From 1998-2004 he was Director of Music at Kimbolton School in Cambridgeshire, also holding the post of Musical Director of the Huntingdonshire Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. He has also appeared as guest conductor for Harrogate Choral Society and the Manchester Camerata. Marcus enjoys engagements as a baritone soloist in addition to his work as a conductor and adjudicator with a repertoire covering many of the major choral works. Recent engagements have included Brahms: Ein deutsches Requiem at Trinity College, Cambridge. He has been a tutor in conducting at the Association of British Choral Directors Annual Conference and has been a tutor on both the Harrogate Choral Week and Cranleigh Choral Week since the beginning.

Marcus is currently Director of Music at Cranleigh School and Musical Director of Cranleigh Choral Society. Recent conducting projects in this capacity have included Bartok: Piano Concerto No. 3 and the Bruch: Violin Concerto, both with Cranleigh pupils as soloists, Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 2, Handel: Messiah, Dvorak: Te Deum and Brahms: Ein deutsches Requiem. He has also recently undertaken the musical direction of a major production of Les Misérables.

 

James Davey

JAMES DAVEY

James Davey is one of this country’s most distinguished and respected young choral conductors. He began his musical career as a chorister, later studying performance at the Birmingham Conservatoire where, inspired by his experiences with the National Youth Choir and the critically acclaimed Laudibus, he formed the Sedici Chamber Choir and took his conducting debut.

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In 1999 James took up residency at St Paul’s Cathedral School as Music Assistant, from where he formed the award-winning choir Chantage – BBC Radio 3 Choir of the Year 2006. Since then he has studied conducting under many eminent choral figures, attending the Voices International Conducting Symposium lead by Michael Brewer and Ralph Allwood, taking the Association of British Choral Directors Conducting Course headed by Peter Broadbent and Therees Hibbard, and studying for an MA in Choral Education at Roehampton University.

In 2002 James took up an appointment at the BBC, leading a project to re-catalogue the BBC’s vast collection of choral sheet music as the archive’s chief choral advisor. He has since worked with the BBC Singers as an education practitioner for their GoSing project.

James is in demand throughout the UK as a choral conductor and choir trainer. As part of his busy life he conducts the Aylesbury Festival Choir, Guardian’s Angels (the choir of the Guardian newspaper), Central Harmony Community Choir and he is an Assistant Conductor for the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain. James is also a Choir Trainer for the Royal College of Music Junior Department, Cranleigh Choral Week and the Canford Summer School of Music.

Lucy-Griffiths

LUCY GRIFFITHS

Lucy Griffiths is much in demand as a conductor and as a vocal animateur. She studied for her undergraduate degree in Music at the University of Bristol and McGill University in Montreal. She went on to work as a Lecturer in Music at Portsmouth University before being awarded the prestigious Sinfonia ViVA conducting scholarship. This allowed her to complete her Masters in Conducting at Birmingham Conservatoire, where she was twice awarded the Michael Beech Conducting Prize. Lucy has studied with Martyn Brabbins, Sian Edwards and Bob Chilcott, amongst other eminent figures.

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Lucy is Assistant Director of Music at the University of Warwick, and a visiting tutor in Choral Conducting at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. Former posts include Musical Director of the Training Choirs of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

Lucy’s work as a vocal animateur takes her all over the UK, regularly leading projects with Opera North, Welsh National Opera, English Touring Opera, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, and Sing Up. She is also active in training conductors and singing leaders.

Lucy is an enthusiastic choral singer. She has sung with the City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus, and now enjoys singing with Choros Amici (BBC Choir of the Year 2000).

Mark_Jordan

MARK JORDAN

After graduating from the University of Manchester with honours and specialising in piano accompaniment, Mark pursued a varied musical career both as a preparatory school Director of Music and as a répétiteur working with a wide range of amateur and professional choirs.

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He has held répétiteur/accompanist positions with Manchester Chorale, Canzonetta, Oxford Pro Musica Singers, Manchester University Chorus, John Lewis Partnership Music Society, Opera Unlimited (as Musical Director) and many other groups. He is also in demand for individual engagements and has been fortunate to work with a number of prominent soloists and conductors, including Lesley Garrett.

Since leaving teaching to concentrate on a freelance career, in addition to his choral accompaniment work, he is increasingly in demand as a choral conductor. He is Assistant Chorus Master of Voices in Partnership (part of the John Lewis Partnership Music Society), a regular guest conductor of the Cathedral Singers of Christ Church Oxford, the Assistant Musical Director of Oxford Pro Musica Singers and the Musical Director of the recently-formed Oxon Singers. He has also recently completed a period as Musical Director of the Hardynge Choir during their interregnum. Mark is a regular member of the staff at Cranleigh Choral Week; he was a member of staff on the inaugural Choral Week in Harrogate in 1994.

Mark is also a highly experienced choral singer having sung with several award-winning choirs including Canzonetta, Choros Amici, Chantage and many others.

Janet Shell

JANET SHELL

After starting out as a head of Music, Janet trained at Guildhall School of Music and Drama. During her early career she won several singing competitions, including some in Paris for singing French song, and was the first mezzo soprano to be taken on by YCAT. She was the first singer ever to sing live on Day 2 of Classic FM and also gave the first female duet programme on ‘Friday Night is Music Night’ for the BBC.

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Her voice can be heard in the opening sequence of the 1995 British comedy film, ‘Caught in the Act’.

Janet quickly established herself in the fields of oratorio and recital, forming an enduring partnership with pianist, John Flinders. Together they were invited guests in Tokyo for the then Prime Minister John Major following a tour of South America. While Janet has performed with Welsh National Opera, Opera North, English National Opera and for the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, it is for her oratorio and concert work that Janet remains best known, particularly in her affinity with the music of Elgar and last year she sang Dream of Gerontius in Birmingham Town Hall, the scene of its premier just over 100 years ago.

Unusual moments in her career have included singing for the Spice Girls at Geri Halliwell’s house following the christening of her daughter; being a backing singer on the Classical Brit Awards; singing a ‘hip hop’ track; singing the National Anthem on ice (carefully!) before an Ice Hockey match and in September 2009, singing for the first Royal Wedding at the Chapel Royal, Hampton Court for 500 years!

She has given invited vocal master classes at Stetson University, Florida, at the Music Conservatoire in Tokyo, and in May 2010 in New York for present and former students of Julliard School, and last year was the vocal tutor at Cranleigh Choral Week. She has also established Talking Voice, working with teachers and voice professionals on vocal and presentation skills.

 

ACCOMPANISTS

Kathleen-Hesford

KATHLEEN HESFORD

Kathleen graduated from the RNCM specialising in accompaniment, studying with John Wilson and David Lloyd.

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She gained her performer’s diploma and her ARCO diploma in London.

Kathleen works with several choirs in the North West.

Philip Scriven

PHILIP SCRIVEN

Philip Scriven is widely regarded as one of the finest organists of his generation, and highly respected as a choral, orchestral and operatic conductor.

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He is Organist-in-Residence at Cranleigh School, co-founder and Principal Conductor of the Darwin Ensemble Chamber Orchestra, and Accompanist/Assistant Conductor of The Bach Choir, combining these posts with a freelance recital career which takes him all over the world. He is one of the few organists to have performed as a soloist in Carnegie Hall.

He has made numerous recordings including works such as Holst’s The Planets which he has transcribed for the organ. His CD Piping Hot was praised in Gramophone magazine for ‘the outstanding quality of his playing … good-humoured and sparkling … a joy to listen to’.

He For eight years, Philip was Director of Music at Lichfield Cathedral, where he also directed the Lichfield Cathedral Chorus. He has conducted The Bach Choir and the Waynflete Singers, and regularly gives choral workshops throughout the country.