Héloïse West was born in Devon.  When she joined the National Youth Choir of Great Britain she received a gifted pupil award. She gained an Entrance Exhibition to the Royal Academy of Music, graduating with an LRAM and a Bachelor of Music degree in performance. She has also studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Héloïse has recently started an in-depth course of study on Wagnerian roles with Lionel Friend. She has a busy career in the South West singing oratorios.

David Davies was brought up in Snowdonia, North Wales. He then won a sixth form and Music scholarship to Eton. David later gained the organ scholarship to Magdalen College, Oxford. In addition to accompanying the Chapel Choir he toured with them to Japan and the USA. In 1999 David won a scholarship to study at the Institute of Sacred Music at Yale University, and spent two years concurrently as Fellow in Church Music at Christ Church, New Haven. He has worked at Guildford and Exeter Cathedrals in the UK, as Assistant Director of Music. He has appeared on numerous television and radio broadcasts, and has performed at Westminster Abbey and the Royal Festival Hall, in addition to concert tours in the USA and Germany.

About the Musicians

Kevin Hurst is based in Budleigh Salterton. He has enjoyed a career as a professional clarinettist giving highly-acclaimed recitals nationwide and abroad, including as a ‘Making Music’ featured artist in the UK and a guest appearance at the International Clarinet Association’s Annual Convention in Vancouver. The International Clarinet Association Journal has described his playing as having: ‘beautiful tone & technical authority’. Kevin is a ‘Wurlitzer clarinet artist’ and ‘Vandoren clarinet artist’ by invitation. He is on the substitute list of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, though he chose early on not to pursue an orchestral path.

Kevin’s earliest musical training was as a Bucks County Music Scholarship holder. This was followed by a music degree course at the University of York, culminating in a post-graduate research year into advanced musical performance at the RNCM funded by a Countess of Munster Musical Trust award. Whilst at university and the RNCM, Kevin won musical awards and prizes, notably for concerto competition performances.

Kevin is on the instrumental tutor list at the University of Exeter, conducts the East Devon Clarinet Choir and teaches primarily the piano at his home. He has previously worked as a civil servant at a London HQ and as a chess coach.

Idil Biret was born in Ankara. She started to play the piano at the age of three and later studied at the Paris Conservatoire under the guidance of Nadia Boulanger, graduating at the age of fifteen with three first prizes. She was a pupil of Alfred Cortot and a lifelong disciple of Wilhelm Kempff.

Idil embarked on her career as a soloist at the age of sixteen appearing with major orchestras, in the principal music centres of the world, including the Boston Symphony, Leningrad Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus, London Symphony and Warsaw Philharmonic with conductors of greatest distinction, among them Erich Leinsdorf, Pierre Monteux, Hermann Scherchen, Gennadi Rozhdestvensky, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Kazimierz Kord, and Antoni Wit. To many major festival appearances may be added membership of juries for international competitions that have included the Van Cliburn, Queen Elisabeth of the Belgians, and Busoni Piano Competitions. She received the Lili Boulanger Memorial Award in Boston, the Harriet Cohen / Dinu Lipatti Gold Medal in London, the Polish Cavalry Cross of the Order of Merit, the Adelaide Ristori Prize in Italy, the French Chevalier de l’Ordre National du Mérite, and the State Artist distinction in Turkey.

More than one hundred records since the 1960s include the first recordings of all Liszt’s transcriptions of Beethoven’s Symphonies (EMI), Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique (Atlantic/Finnadar) and (for Naxos) the complete piano works of Brahms, Chopin, and Rachmaninov, the three Sonatas of Boulez, Ligeti’s Etudes, Stravinsky’s transcription of The Firebird, and a (Marco Polo) disc of the piano compositions and transcriptions of her mentor Wilhelm Kempff. These records have sold nearly three million copies. Her Boulez recording was awarded the Golden Diapason of the year award in France in 1995 and the complete Chopin recordings received a Grand Prix du Disque Frédéric Chopin award in Poland in the same year.
In 2007 President Lech Kaczsnky decorated Biret with Poland’s highest order (Krzyzem Kawalerskim Ordera Zaslugi) for her contribution to Polish culture through her recordings and performances of Chopin’s music.

Idil Biret Archive (IBA) label is now issuing her old and new recordings which are being distributed worldwide by Naxos on CD and digitally. More than fifty CDs have so far been released which include Beethoven’s Sonatas and Concertos together with the Symphony transcriptions by Liszt (as a box set of nineteen CDs), the many LPs she made for Decca, Vega, EMI and Atlantic records in France, Germany, and USA. In addition to recently recorded concertos of Grieg, Liszt, Ravel, Saint-Säens, Schumann and Tchaikovsky. Her new recording of the five piano concertos of Hindemith, with the Yale Symphony Orchestra, was released worldwide by Naxos in October 2013 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of his passing away. More than one hundred recordings made by Idil Biret since 1959 will be released, towards the end of 2016, as a set of two volumes containing ten boxes (Idil Biret 100 Edition).

Among recent activities were concerts in Warsaw, at the UNESCO Assembly Hall in Paris, and performances of Brahms’ 1
st Concerto and Mozart Concertos in London. She recorded the Scriabin Etudes Op. 2, 8 and 42, the Schumann Quintet, the Brahms Cello/Piano Sonatas, and began a series of Mozart Concerto recordings with the London Mozart Players. In 2015 she additionally recorded Bach’s Das Wohltemperierte Klavier and, in 2016, Sonatas by Schubert. Among engagements in 2016 were a concert appearance at the Carnegie Hall in New York in April, three recitals at the Istanbul Festival in June, and, in November, a performance of Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini in London. She will also participate in the Pïano Festival in Monterrey, Mexico, in September. In 2017 she joined the juries of the piano competitions in Montreal and Munich. A tour in Cuba with the Yale Symphony Orchestra is being planned.

Travelling by Tuba

Chris Cranham - Tuba attended Peter Symonds College in Winchester to study on the Hampshire Specialist Music Course with John Fletcher. He entered the Royal Northern College of Music in 1987 to study under Stuart Roebuck, former principal tuba with the Hallé Orchestra.

He won many competitions and scholarships and was for two years a member the World Youth Orchestra, touring South America, Canada and Europe. He gained the Professional Performers Diploma with Distinction in 1990 and gained his Graduate Diploma the following year. It was also in that year that he moved to Germany to play in one of Europe’s leading brass quintet, Rekkenze Brass. Chris made several CD productions with the quintet and toured extensively throughout Europe, America and the Far East. He also performed for television and radio and became principal tuba with the Hof Symphony Orchestra in Bavaria. 

Since his return, Chris has been working both as a solo and orchestral tuba player as well as performing regularly with Travelling by Tuba.

Stewart Death - Piano began his formal musical training at City University in 1984 studying piano with Alan Schiller at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. After graduating with a BSc(Hons) in music in 1987 he entered the Royal Northern College of Music  to study piano accompaniment with David Lloyd gaining the prestigious Professional Performers Diploma. 

Since leaving college he has toured throughout Europe with the Concordia Opera Trio and has been heard as an accompanist on Classic FM, BBC Radio and Independent Television.

He has worked as an accompanist for Welsh National Opera and has recorded several compact discs with many different artistes including Stephen Mead, Roger Webster, Simone Rebello and Andrew Berryman. 

He has recently returned from a tour of Poland.

Chris and Stewart first met in 1987 as students at the Royal Northern College of Music. The following year Stewart travelled as an accompanist with Chris and three other tubists to Markneukirchen in East Germany to take part in their International Tuba Competition. The two performed together often and began to see the potential in a tuba and piano duo. It was in 1990 that Travelling by Tuba was born, when they started working for Live Music Now, a national charity started by Sir Yehudi Menuhin designed to take music to all parts of the community. Stewart’s added ability on the trumpet gave an extra dimension to the group in that between the two of them the whole range of brass instruments could be played.

Travelling by Tuba’s extensive recital schedule has included many concerts at music clubs and festivals throughout the UK and tours to Canada, America and Europe. Recently, they have returned from Carolina where they gave the American premiere of ‘A Rhapsody for Tuba, Piano and Wind Orchestra’ by the Scottish composer Andrew Duncan with the USA Army Band (Pershings Own). They have recorded three compact discs as well as having a series of arrangements published. The group has appeared regularly on BBC Radio and television and for many of the independent networks. 

Clifton Chilton-Graham 2017 marked the 25th anniversary of priesting in the Church of England and over 50 years of music-making as organist, pianist, conductor and teacher for Clifton Graham. These two roles, music and ministry, are for him intertwined in a completely homogenous way.

Of course, the combination of music and the priesthood is not a new one. Musicians like Vivaldi, Liszt, Soler, Victoria and more recently Ronald Corp and Richard Coles have all managed to allow dedication to the priesthood to feed into the artistic disciplines of the performer and vice versa. This has always resonated with Clifton as an entirely justifiable use of God-given gifts and talents. There is equal enrichment of one which is imparted to the other.
His musical journey began very early on coming from an artistic family. This led to four years at the Royal College of Music in London studying the organ, trombone, harpsichord while working as a repetiteur in the RCM Opera School. After the RCM, his career diversified as he took up numerous key teaching appointments in Tiverton, Oxford and Bristol while continuing to enjoy performing opportunities as a freelance player. He returned to Oxford for theological training in 1990 and although he is now semi-retired he continues to enjoy the two-in-one life of the musician/priest.