Today (7 March 2022), Wanstead Parish are pleased to welcome Steven Swindells as our new Freelance Choral Director.

Steven is a scholarship graduate of the Royal College of Music where he was under direction of Alison Wells and generously supported by the HR Taylor Trust on the Master of Performance course. Prior to his study at the Royal College of Music, Steven studied an undergraduate degree in piano performance at Birmingham Conservatoire.

Steven has performed throughout the West Midlands and London, as well as on television and radio. Credits include Soloist for Beethoven’s 9th Symphony at St. John’s Smith Square, The Vanishing Bridegroom (Middle Son) and English Eccentrics (Tenor quartet) with British Youth Opera, Tristan & Isolde (Chorus), Fidelio (Chorus) and Der fliegende Holländer (chorus) with Longborough Festival Opera, Ferrando and Jaquino in RCM Opera Scenes, several oratorio performances including tenor soloist in: Verdi’s Requiem (De Montford Hall), Mozart’s Requiem at St Martin in The Fields during the Brandenburg Festival, Handel’s Messiah with the Central England Ensemble and Puccini’s Petit Messe Solennelle.

Steven first trained in piano at age 14 and was awarded a place at Birmingham Conservatoire to study piano at age 18 on the BMus(Hons) course. He studied with international concert pianist Victor Sangiorgio and took part in masterclasses as a solo and chamber musician given by artists including Margaret Fingerhut, Phillip Martin, The Schubert Ensemble, The Mozart Players and the Maggini Quartet. Steven also studied Harpsichord under Douglas Hollick and Fortepiano under Sharona Joshua. Steven also trained in conducting and has been musical director to several musical theatre groups and choirs.

In 2012, Steven co-founded the Vellen Ensemble piano trio. He performed with the ensemble throughout the West Midlands and London, leading to performing in competitions and recording an album of classical chamber music by Mozart and Haydn, which is available at all leading online digital stores.

Steven had always had a passion for opera and vocal repertoire and In his final year of undergraduate studies, undertook voice lessons with Gordon Sanderson after being further inspired into the world of singing through accompanying many singers during his degree. This lead Steven to audition for the Philharmonia Chorus with whom he sang under direction of Stefan Bevier regularly on a professional basis performing works such as Verdi’s Requiem, and Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius, where he also acted as rehearsal pianist, in prestigious concert halls throughout Europe and London. Steven’s choral ethos is inspired from the inspirational late chorus master and friend, Stefan Bevier; where he believes the most beautiful and honest singing is achieved by shaping the sound through the text and vocal timbres.

Aside from performing, Steven enjoys teaching and has vast experience in the field. Alongside running his teaching agency, Swindells Music, he currently has a full schedule teaching both singing and piano at Chigwell School and privately at his studio.

We are very lucky to have Steven joining us and we look forward to the music at Wanstead Parish continuing to flourish under his direction and care.