Ben Parry

Guest conductor

Ben Parry

Ben Parry has a busy career as a conductor, composer, arranger, singer and producer in both classical and light music fields. He has made over 80 CD recordings and his compositions and arrangements are published by Oxford University Press, Peters Edition and Faber Music, including the popular Faber Carol Book and Music for Special Occasions. He collaborates regularly with the writer Garth Bardsley: their choral piece Flame was performed by a choir of 300 singers at the Royal Albert Hall in the 2012 BBC Proms and their carol Three Angels by King's College Choir on BBC TV's Carols from King's. Major commissions include the Cathedral Choral Society of Washington DC, Norwich, Ely and Sheffield Cathedrals, BBC Singers and the Aldeburgh Festival. Ben's music also featured in the 1st episode of the hit US TV series, Glee. He has composed many track for the Library music company, Audio Network, whose music can be heard throughout the world on radio at TV. 

Ben is Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain, and works extensively with young musicians as a director of the Eton Choral Courses and as former Director of Music at St Paul’s School and the Junior Royal Academy of Music in London. As co-Director of the professional choir London Voices, he has worked closely with Sir Paul McCartney on his classical choral work, Ecce Cor Meum, as well as conducting on the soundtracks of major films such as The HobbitHunger Games and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. London Voices performed the premiere of Stockhausen’s Mittwoch for the 2012 Cultural Olympiad in Birmingham Festival and Berio’s Sinfonia with the National Youth Orchestra in 2009 and at the BBC Proms in 2014. He is also Assistant Director of Music and a Bye-Fellow of King's College, Cambridge, where he directs the mixed choir, King's Voices. 

Ben studied at Cambridge University, where he was a member of King’s College Choir. Later he was musical director and singer with The Swingle Singers, with whom he toured the world and performed with some of the greatest musicians, including Pierre Boulez, Stephane Grapelli and Dizzy Gillespie. He composed and arranged over fifty pieces for the group and co-produced their albums for Virgin Classics and EMI. 

For eight years he lived in Scotland, where he co-founded the distinguished ensemble Dunedin Consort, and was also Director of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra Chorus and Director of Choral Music at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. As an orchestral conductor he was worked with the London Mozart Players, London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Academy of Ancient Music, Royal Symphony Orchestra of Seville, The Scottish Ensemble and the Vancouver Youth Symphony. He conducted five productions from 1999 as Music Director of Haddo House Opera. He has sung with the Gabrieli Consort, Taverner Consort and Tenebrae, as well as on many film and TV soundtracks. 

He appeared on the West End stage in the UK premiere of Cy Colman's musical City of Angels in 1994.