Jill Henderson-Wild 2006-Present
Born in Oldham in 1966, Jill Henderson-Wild studied the ‘cello with Joan Dickson, a professor at the Royal College of Music, before becoming a Choral Scholar at Girton College, Cambridge, where she read Music. After graduating, she won a two year scholarship from the Swiss Government to study choral and orchestral conducting with Michel Corboz and Arpad Gerecz at the Conservatoire in Geneva and was awarded ‘Le Prix du Conseil de l’Etat’ with her diploma.
Following this, she went to Lisbon as Chorus Master to the Gulbenkian Foundation Choir and then worked as Development Officer, and subsequently Music Director for ‘Sing for Pleasure’ for several years. She subsequently continued as Head of Conductor Training for SfP for several years and continues to tutor at events for both adults and children organised by them and by other choral organisations, in Britain and abroad.
She currently works as the Vocal Animateur for Stockport LEA, supporting and promoting singing within all the borough’s schools, as well as delivering INSET training for teachers. Until recently she was Chorus Master to the Leeds Philharmonic Society and continues to undertake free-lance conducting, vocal training and adjudicating engagements.
Laura Jellicoe 2002-2006
Laura became the Musical Director for the Manchester Chorale in 2002, taking over from the Chorale’s founding conductor Jeffrey Wynn Davies.
Laura graduated in 1994 from the Royal Northern College of Music, where she is now a Flute Tutor, and joined the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra as Sub -Principal Flute. Since leaving in 2002 she has guested as Principal Flute with several major British Orchestras including the BBC Symphony Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Northern Sinfonia. She has appeared as soloist with the BBC Concert Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and the City of London Sinfonia.
She has given solo recitals throughout the UK, and is also a member of two regular chamber music ensembles – The Abbruzzi Trio with Bernard Gregor-Smith, cello, and Yoland Wrigley, piano, and Silk and Steel, a Trio which specialises in educational concerts for children of all ages.
Laura has been studying Conducting with Vernon Handley for several years, and has also attended conducting workshops and courses at the Schleswig-Holstein Academy and in Amsterdam with the Finnish teacher Jorma Panula. In 1998 she formed The Emmanuel Ensemble, a chamber orchestra which brings together students from the Royal Northern College of Music and young professional musicians. Professional conducting engagements elsewhere have included 3 recordings and over thirty concerts with the RLPO and Manchester Camerata. As well as being Musical Director of The Manchester Chorale, Laura is Musical Director of the Cheshire Youth Orchestra.
Laura is also active as an Adjudicator at music festivals throughout the UK. In addition to these, in 2004 she was invited to the Hong-Kong Schools Music Festival, where she adjudicated over 1800 candidates in three weeks!
Laura was also been appointed Acting Head of Woodwind at Chetham’s School of Music.
Laura Jellicoe has now departed for pastures new after four successful years with The Chorale. There were several highlights, but for many of us, the peak was the first performance of “Simple Pictures of Tomorrow”, which was commissioned by The Chorale from Bob Chilcott to celebrate our 25th. Anniversary. In addition, Concerts with the Emmanuel Ensemble and Emmanuel Brass, (Fauré’s Requiem, Rutter’s Gloria, etc), were also particularly memorable. Our thanks go to Laura for all her efforts and we wish her good fortune in her future endeavours.
Jeffrey Wynn Davies 1979-2002
Jeffrey Wynn Davies was the Founder of The Manchester Chorale and continues to enhance his already established reputation as one of the North of England’s busiest and most versatile choral directors. Artistic Director of a recent Association of British Choral Directors National Convention, he conducted five international choirs in the world premiere of Andrew Carter’s The Mystic Trumpeter in Chester Cathedral. He was chorus director of the Chorale for the first performance of the opera Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Peter Ash/Donald Sturrock) in the Bridgewater Hall.
Founder/director of Canzonetta, he also directs the internationally renowned Manchester Boys Choir and Harrogate Choral Society, and has acted as Chorus Director to both Pavarotti and Carreras with The Manchester Chorale. He has worked with Manchester Camerata, BT Scottish Ensemble and has chorus directed for the Hallé, the Israel Chamber Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Northern Sinfonia.