Anthony Bradbury (Music Director); Stephen Williams (Chairman)

[Anthony Bradbury]
Anthony Bradbury
Music Director & Conductor
(To visit Anthony Bradbury's main website, click here)

Anthony Bradbury is a former member of the Midland Youth Orchestra (MYO) and attended King Edward VI College, Stourbridge, where he played clarinet, piano and percussion with numerous orchestras, ensembles and wind bands. He continued his education at Brasenose College, Oxford University, studying orchestration and electro-acoustic music with the composer Robert Sherlaw Johnson, and graduated with an MA in Music. Whilst at Oxford, Anthony was awarded a scholarship to conduct the Brasenose chapel choir.

A year after graduating from university, Anthony took up the position of Associate Conductor of the MYO in 1991, subsequently becoming its Conductor in 1998 and then its Music Director from 2000 until its incorporation into the CBSO Youth Orchestra in 2004. As well as sitting on the Advisory Board of the new CBSO Youth Orchestra, Anthony directed half of its inaugural concert in October 2004, sharing the podium with former CBSO Music Director Sakari Oramo, and then returned in October 2006 to conduct half of an all-Stravinsky programme, again with Sakari Oramo, as part of the CBSO’s IgorFest project, and to celebrate what would have been the MYO’s 50th Anniversary.

Anthony is a freelance conductor who also works with a number of other Midlands-based organisations. He is Music Director and Conductor of the Central England Ensemble (CEE), an orchestra whose remit is to support the work of contemporary composers from the Midlands. He has also appeared as a guest conductor with many other ensembles including the Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra and Sinfonia of Birmingham.

For 15 years, Anthony held the post of Associate Conductor then Music Director of Birmingham Festival Choral Society (BFCS) which, having been founded in 1843, is the longest established chorus still active in Birmingham today.

Anthony has conducted concerts abroad in France, Belgium, Holland, Bulgaria, Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic and, during Easter 2000, in Canada as part of the MYO’s visit to the Banff International Festival of Youth Orchestras; the MYO was one of only two European orchestras to be invited to play at this festival. Anthony has also directed a number of premieres and second performances of contemporary works, including music by Ruth Byrchmore and Andrew Downes (with the MYO & CEE), and John Joubert (with BFCS). Other activities have included a BBC Radio 3 broadcast of three Christmas carols with BFCS.

In 1995, Anthony was awarded the Christian Salvesen Baton Award, sponsored by Christian Salvesen plc in conjunction with the National Association of Youth Orchestras, as a much deserved tribute to his work with the MYO.

[Stephen Williams]
Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams was born in Staffordshire but brought up in Coventry. After military service as a musician he studied viola with Lena Wood at the Birmingham School of Music (now Birmingham Conservatoire) where he was also awarded the prize for musical composition.

After a period of time as a string teacher with Worcestershire LEA, he was awarded the Spencer Travelling Scholarship which enabled him to initially study conducting with Sir Adrian Boult and composition with Gordon Jacob at the Royal College of Music, London, and, later, with Boris Blacher at the Hochschüle für Musik in Berlin.

Thereafter he freelanced in the Coventry area as a conductor, lecturer and teacher and, in 1973, he was appointed to the Coventry School of Music (now Coventry University Performing Arts) where he was Senior Lecturer in Music until his recent early retirement. He is now freelancing once more.

Stephen Williams was a founder member of the Midland Youth Orchestra and he renewed his links with the MYO in 1972 by becoming Associate Conductor. He became Conductor in 1991, Music Director in 1994 (until 2000), and was its Chairman from 1994 onwards.