Garry Humphreys studied conducting with Bryan Fairfax and continues to learn by watching (and listening to) others, either as a performer, member of the audience, or through discussion. In particular he has been inspired by Sir Adrian Boult, Vernon Handley and Rudolf Kempe. As a former professional singer he has learnt much about choir training by being on the receiving end of rehearsals for forty years with, firstly, Noel Cox in Nottingham, then Martindale Sidwell, Denys Darlow, George Thalben-Ball and numerous others, good and bad, in London and the south of England. As a singer he is in particular able to suggest to choir members ways of overcoming technical problems in works performed.

To begin with he had a number of small opportunities to conduct and for fifteen years trained the Broadheath Singers for their annual concerts of British music when their regular conductor, Maestro Robert Tucker, was absent. In 2002 and 2003 he was responsible for all the rehearsals and for the concert itself and performed two programmes of works receiving either their first performances ever, or revivals after long periods of neglect:

2002

Dyson
Stanford
Cowen

Bliss
Stanford

2003

Dyson
Milford*
Pitfield*
Fogg*

Vaughan Williams

* born 1903

 

Four Songs for Sailors
Merlin and the Gleam (possible world premiere)
The Dream of Endymion (possibly the first performance for nearly a century)
A Song of Welcome (first performance since 1955)
Songs of the Fleet

 

Three Songs of Praise
Drake's Chair
The Hills
The Seasons (second performance, and first since 1931)
Five Mystical Songs.

Some Press reviews (2002 concert)

Roderic Dunnett, Church Times : 'The Broadheath Singers and [Windsor] Sinfonia have acquired a worthy new conductor in Garry Humphreys … Fine orchestral playing and choral singing …Humphreys's long baton and steady, well-judged tempi (reminiscent of Adrian Boult) elicited lovely, flowing sounds [in the Dyson] … A thrilling performance [of the Bliss].'

Andrew Neill, Elgar Society News : 'The whole programme was controlled and inspired most effectively by Garry Humphreys … His diligence in learning these new scores is to be applauded, as was his distinguished contribution to a memorable evening.'

Graham Parlett, British Music Society Newsletter : '[The] concert was in the capable hands of Garry Humphreys … [The Bliss:] This enterprising revival. Our warmest thanks must go to Garry Humphreys and his dedicated performers for having breathed life back into some fine music.'

 

Garry Humphreys is now able to accept additional conducting engagements, and may be contacted by e-mail



Garry Humphreys

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