The English conductor and organist, Ralph Woodward, was born and educated in Durham. He spent four years as Organ Scholar at Queens’ College, Cambridge. While there, he conducted the Chapel Choir’s first two CD's and gave world premieres of numerous works. These included three pieces by Stanford, one of which he edited for publication.
Now a freelance conductor and keyboard player, Ralph Woodward has written often on the music of Benjamin Britten, and was described by the Independent on Sunday as a ‘leading authority’ on the composer. He has a wide performing repertoire, particular specialisms being the music of J.S. Bach and W.A. Mozart, the French Baroque and Scandinavian music.
Ralph Woodward is Musical Director of the Fairhaven Singers, Full Score, the Britten–Pears Chamber Choir and the Northumbrian Recorder and Viol School. He has worked in over 20 countries, and has conducted the London Mozart Players, Cambridge Baroque Camerata, the Tallis Chamber Orchestra and Ely Sinfonia. He carries out a wide range of editorial tasks for Oxford University Press, with particular involvement in the William Walton Edition, and is much in demand as a leader of choral workshops. His choral arrangements are also successful, and have been performed all round Europe and on Radio 4’s PM programme.
Past projects have included work with Vladimir Ashkenazy, Christopher Hogwood, Emma Kirkby and Michael Chance. Work in 2009 has seen him premiering and recording Will Todd’s Requiem for soprano, choir and electric guitar, and conducting in Sorrento, Austria, Seville and Paris. Forthcoming engagements include working with The Parley of Instruments and the Britten Sinfonia.