The Board of St Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast, has appointed Mr David Stevens as its new choirmaster.
The post will carry the title ‘Master of the Choristers’ and is a newly shaped role that will involve the formation of both a boys’ choir and a girls’ choir for the Cathedral.
David Stevens is Director of the Girls’ Choir and Sub–Organist at Newcastle Cathedral, and Director of Campus Music at Northumbria University. He also teaches Choral Conducting to organ scholars at Oxford University.
He is a prize–winning graduate of the Royal Academy of Music in London, from where he obtained an MA in Choral Conducting, with distinction, in 2009. Prior to that, David read Music and was Organ Scholar at Oriel College, Oxford. He has conducted the BBC Singers, the choir of the London Oratory, the Royal Academy of Music Chamber Choir, the choir of New College, Oxford, and the Arcadian Singers of Oxford University.
Before moving to London, David spent a year as Organ Scholar and acting Sub–Organist of Guildford Cathedral, where he played the organ for services and assisted with the training and conducting of the cathedral choirs.
David currently studies with Dame Gillian Weir.
The appointment of a ‘Master of the Choristers’ marks a new and exciting phase in the development of the choral tradition of Belfast Cathedral, with a contemporary model for raising standards within an inclusive and collaborative structure.
The Dean of Belfast, The Very Rev John Mann, said: “David Stevens offers a new vision for the choirs of St Anne’s. I am in no doubt that he will receive the wide support of the Cathedral community, parents and schools, and the musical establishment of the City.”
The Dean continued: “I would also like to pay tribute to Ian Barber, the Cathedral organist, who continues to play a vital role in the life of St Anne’s and to all who have supported him through this transitional period, including all members of the Choir.
“I am particularly delighted that the vision for the future is ambitious and outward looking, and that Ian will be part of this exciting new development.”
David Stevens said he was ‘extremely delighted’ to have been appointed ‘Master of the Choristers’ at St Anne’s. “I’m looking forward to collaborating with John Mann and Ian Barber to continue and build on the tradition of excellent choral music at the cathedral,” he said.
“I hope that we can create something exciting that will assist the Cathedral’s ministry to its community and the City.”
David is expected to take up his post after Easter 2012.