Sir Karl Jenkins CBE, FRAM, D.Mus. was appointed as Patron to the choir July 2007.
Karl Jenkins was born in South Wales in 1944. As a child he studied piano and oboe and later read music at the University of Wales and at the Royal Academy of Music.
He won awards as a jazz oboist and multi-instrumentalist working with, among others, Ronnie Scott. He co-founded Nucleus in 1972, winning first prize at the Montreal Jazz Festival, before joining Soft Machine.
A recent survey shows that Karl Jenkins is now the most performed living composer in the world with The Armed Man performed nearly 1000 times in over 20 countries.
He came to prominence with his Adiemus project. It found enormous popularity, topping classical and ‘pop’ charts around the world, gaining 17 gold or platinum album awards while performing in Tokyo, Madrid, London, Helsinki, Munich etc.
Karl has composed many prestigious commissions including the harp concerto commissioned by HRH the Prince of Wales, the concertante, Quirk, commissioned by the London Symphony Orchestra as part of its 2005 centenary season, works for the percussionist Evelyn Glennie and for several choirs and festivals. The Armed Man; A Mass for Peace, commissioned by the Royal Armouries for the millennium and premièred at the Royal Albert Hall, London has had hundreds of performances in recent years while the CD, featuring the National Youth Choir of Great Britain and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, has gained “Gold Disc” status in the UK.
CD releases include Requiem, which went to No. 1 in the UK classical charts, Kiri Sings Karl with Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, and This Land Of Ours, a musical celebration of Welsh culture featuring the Cory Band and the male choir, Only Men Aloud. Stabat Mater was released by EMI Classics on March 9th 2008 prior to the première at Liverpool Cathedral on March 15th and Quirk, a collection of concertos, was released in October 2008. Gloria was released on CD by EMI on 12th July 2010.
In 2004 Karl entered Classic FM’s “Hall of Fame” at No. 8, the highest position for a living composer. In 2006 he was ranked No. 4 amongst British composers. He was presented by Classic FM with the Red F award for ‘outstanding service to classical music’.
Karl holds a D.Mus degree from the University of Wales, has been made both a Fellow and an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music and has fellowships at Cardiff University, the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, Trinity College Carmarthen, Swansea Institute. He was awarded an OBE by Her Majesty The Queen in the 2005 New Year’s Honours List for services to music, a COB in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2010, and a Knighthood in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2015
Dr Stephen Bullamore, appointed Musical Director of Leicester Philharmonic Choir shall commence September 2017
Stephen Bullamore is an active and accomplished choral director, music editor and organist. In addition to his work with the Leicester Philharmonic Choir, he is Director of Music at St Mary Magdalene, Newark, Musical Director of the North Herts Guild of Singers and General Editor of Music 18.
Stephen started his musical life as a chorister York Minster. He studied as an undergraduate at Keble College, Oxford as Organ Scholar, where with the chapel choir he recorded a number of CDs, including part of Priory Records’ Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis series and broadcast live on BBC radio. In conjunction with his post at Keble, Stephen was Organist and Director of Music at St Mark’s, Swindon. Postgraduate study at Goldsmiths resulted in the degree of MMus in Historical Musicology, gained with Distinction. His PhD study of the Sacred Music of John Weldon was undertaken at Bangor University where he spent some time as a graduate teaching assistant.
He spent a year at Guildford Cathedral as Organ Scholar before moving to Lincoln Cathedral in 2001 as an Assistant Organist. From 2005 to 2013 he was Director of Music at Waltham Abbey. Tours with the Abbey choir included Guildford, Chichester, Chelmsford and Lincoln Cathedrals and they recorded a CD for the church’s 950th anniversary in 2010. He then spent a short period as director of Music at St Mary-le-Tower, Ipswich, where he founded a girls’ section to the choir.
Stephen was Musical Director of Barnet Choral Society from 2012 to 2014.
Stephen also directs Ferdinand’s Consort. Their CD output includes The Sacred Music of Thomas Morley, released on the Priory label, and a recording of the work of Thomas Tudway using editions especially prepared by Stephen. A recording of the Solo Anthems of John Weldon with tenor Mark Wilde is in the pipeline.
As an international examiner for the ABRSM, Stephen has travelled all around the UK and abroad listening to candidates in a wide variety of disciplines.