Greg works with singers of all ages and abilities and has a calm and encouraging approach to get the very best out of his singers.
Greg studied Choral Conducting with Patrick Russill and Paul Brough at the Royal Academy of Music and was awarded an MA and LRAM, both with distinction.
He now has the opportunity of passing on the skills he learned by teaching in the equivalent department at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (see my ‘Teacher’ page) for more about this.
Whilst he learnt a great deal from inspirational teachers, and the experience of working with many different choirs, nothing could prepare him for the current trend of leading singers online!
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Greg was forced to become more creative with his working practices. He has successfully transitioned two of his choirs (Bracknell Choral Society and Reading Festival Chorus) onto Zoom rehearsals, which have provided both a musical outlet and a mental health booster for all members of his choirs.
These rehearsals have culminated in a number of virtual choir performances (see Media for the fruits of his labours).
Greg’s regular choirs
Greg has conducted Bracknell Choral Society since 2010; first as Chorus Master, then taking over as Musical Director in 2011. The choir has a vibrant and friendly membership of 120 non-auditioned singers who like to tour every few years, hold workshops, residential courses and perform at least four concerts a year.
In September 2011, he was appointed Musical Director of Swansea Bach Choir, taking over from John Hugh Thomas OBE who founded the choir and built its reputation over 45 years. This auditioned chamber choir of 36 singers retains its exceptional reputation for producing high quality music making and performing concerts in an authentic manner. Swansea Bach Choir has sung live for BBC Radio 4’s Sunday Service – and we look forward to more of these opportunities post-pandemic.
Reading Festival Chorus appointed Greg as their Music Director in 2018. In this relatively short time, he has led the auditioned choir of 70 members through some wonderful repertoire, including that of Buxtehude, Handel, Rheinberger and Verdi’s tremendous Requiem with our twinned choir from Germany, Johanneskantorei, Düsseldorf.
Greg has worked extensively with young singers and thoroughly enjoys developing their abilities. He was Musical Director of the National Youth Boys’ Choir of Great Britain for five years and, in this time recorded Fancie and Three Two-Part Songs as part of NYCGB’s CD ‘A Festival of Britten’. In addition, the choir was asked to premiere Jonathan Dove’s song cycle commissioned by Friday Afternoon’s Music in the Elgar Room at the Royal Albert Hall.
In 2012, Greg’s colleague Rachel Staunton asked him to help found the London Youth Choir, taking a lead with both the Boys’ and Training Choirs. What a joy it was to see the Boys’ Choir grow from one member to 30 over the course of a few years!
For a number of years, Greg assisted Dominic Ellis-Peckham, with the Ulster Youth Training Choir (now National Youth Choir of Northern Ireland). The expansion of the organisation led to Greg founding the Ulster Youth Junior Choir in 2017 for young singers aged 11-14.
Greg has tutored at the Ingenium Academy Summer School and worked with young, enthusiastic singers from around the world.
Over the past few years, Greg has had the great pleasure of working with Mahogany Opera, delivering new, short “Snappy Operas” to young people across the country. This amazing initiative introduces opera to children who may otherwise have not been exposed to this medium in a fun and engaging manner. Greg’s involvement has consisted of teaching and exploring the repertoire and directing the performances alongside professional musicians.
Workshops and Singing Days
Greg has directed workshops for the Laetare Singers, Thames Voices, Border Marches Early Music Forum, Giarole Summer Courses and Aylesbury Festival Choir amongst others.
He enjoys the rehearsal process as much, if not more than the end result. Through positive messages and enthusiastic responses, coupled with honed gesture and technique, Greg is able to guide groups to a level they may not have expected.