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Keith holds degrees from Reading University and the Royal College of Music. His earlier musical studies were as a junior scholarship holder at Guildhall School of Music and Drama. More recently he has been granted a Masters Degree from Sheffield University. He is Head of Surrey County Arts which is responsible for delivering 260,000 lessons in 450 schools and includes 57 ensembles. As a pianist he has performed much of the concerto repertoire, including all the Beethoven concertos and those of Grieg, Shostakovitch, Schumann, Bach, Kabalevsky and Gershwin. He has also been guest conductor with many adult groups such as the Guildford Philharmonic Orchestra, The Orchestra of St John’s and Opera Brava with whom he premiered “The Promise” at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in 1997. He has achieved an ambition by conducting concerts in the Royal Festival Hall, Barbican, Queen Elizabeth and Royal Albert Halls in the same year.
Chamber music is another passion and performances have taken Keith to all parts of the UK and to Spain, Greece, Israel and Turkey.
As a music educator, Keith has been chair of the National Association of Music Educators (NAME) and worked with the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) and OFSTED on a range of projects of national importance. He has lectured at Reading and London Universities and has been a moderator at Middlesex University and the Academy of Contemporary Music.
Keith was appointed as Surrey’s first Head of Culture in January 2003. He continues working with Surrey County Youth Orchestra which he enjoys greatly.
Surrey Youth Choir has performed to critical acclaim in venues all over the Country, at major concert halls in London, and toured extensively throughout Europe and the Eastern Seaboard of the USA. In July last year, SYC visited Italy, giving concerts in Rome, Florence and Lucca. Whilst there are memories of many unforgettable concerts and visits, the undoubted highlight of the trip was singing Mass at St. Peter’s Cathedral in the Vatican, where those participating in the Service applauded the singing!
Surrey Youth Choir is an auditioned choir: our members, aged between 13 and 21, come from many different schools and colleges throughout Surrey and rehearse in Woking each Wednesday evening during the school term. Several members are currently members of the National Youth Choir of Great Britain. Anyone wishing to know more about our audition procedures should contact Sue O’Connell at Surrey County Arts on 01483 727634 or by email – firstname.lastname@example.org.