John Beswick

Conductor


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John Beswick - Education and General Biography

John was a music scholar at Bristol Cathedral School and Organ Scholar of Hertford College, Oxford, where he read music. He studied as a postgraduate répétiteur at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama before winning a scholarship to study conducting at the Royal College of Music, where his teachers included George Hurst, Neil Thomson and Odaline de la Martinez. John then won a scholarship to study with Diego Masson at the 1996 Dartington International Summer School where he was chosen to conduct the Festival performances of Rigoletto.

Since then, John's talent and versatility have enabled him to work in a wide variety of areas covering many styles and genres of music. Currently Musical Director for Swansea City Opera, he has also worked as Musical Director for Pimlico Opera and Opera Box and has worked on the music staff for Icelandic National Opera and Grange Park Opera. Other companies he has worked for as a conductor include London City Opera and Crystal Clear Opera, and his work itinerary has seen him conduct opera throughout the UK, America and in Europe.

John is also the current Principal Conductor of Redhill Sinfonia, a post he has held since the summer of 2012. Orchestras he has previously conducted include the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra, the Oxford Chamber Orchestra, Oxford University Orchestra and Slough Philharmonic. As well as having a great experience of conducting core orchestral repertoire, John specialises in conducting concerts of film music and, in 2009, gave the UK premiere of BAFTA award winning composer Dan Jones' suite from the film Shadow of the Vampire.

In the field of music theatre John has conducted numerous shows, including Les Misérables (West End) and Miss Saigon (UK Tour) for Sir Cameron Mackintosh, and Damon Albarn's pop-opera Monkey Journey to the West (Monkeys' World at the O2). He has worked on many student productions both at home and abroad, and he is in constant demand as a keyboard player in London's West End and on touring shows. Other projects with which John has been involved include Swansea City Opera's From Cars to Mars in association with Dragon Arts, and he has clocked up almost 6 months 'inside' having thrice been Musical Director for Pimlico Opera's famous Prison Projects.

John keeps himself busy as an arranger and has had many of his arrangements performed. In particular John arranges orchestral film music as well as slightly simplified versions of classic pieces for school or youth orchestra. He also enjoys producing reduced orchestrations of operas or shows, and his 6-piece band arrangement of The Magic Flute attracted very positive reviews when it was performed on tour by Swansea City Opera.

 

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