Music Director/Conductor

David Newsholme

I greatly look forward to taking on the position of Music Director of Whitstable Choral Society in January 2020

I will bring a wide range of musical expertise, and hope to share this with members of the choir and audience alike, creating an engaging and exciting artistic experience for all.

I began my musical career at Worcester Cathedral, where I was a chorister and, during my sixth-form years, a lay clerk. As well as singing at daily services and taking part in numerous broadcasts, recordings, and tours, I participated in the celebrated Three Choirs Festival. Singing much of the great choral repertoire with internationally-acclaimed conductors, soloists and orchestras was a formative experience for me.

David Newsholme Music Director and Conductor Whitstable Choral SocietyWhilst still a chorister, I took up the organ. One of my first Sunday posts was at St George’s Roman Catholic Church, where Edward Elgar himself played as a youngster. During my last year at school, I gained the coveted Organ Scholarship at Salisbury Cathedral. Here I spent my gap year, before going up to Oxford to read for a degree in Music.

During my three years in Oxford, I held the prestigious Organ Scholarship at New College. At that time, the choir was directed by Edward Higginbottom. His musical influence was profound. Particularly memorable are the choir’s performances of Handel’s Messiah, given throughout Europe with acclaimed period-instrument ensembles, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and the Academy of Ancient Music, culminating in a remarkable recording with the latter, available on Naxos. I look forward greatly to performing this work with Whitstable Choral Society during the forthcoming academic term.

I have spent the past nine years working as Assistant Organist at Canterbury Cathedral. For six of these years, I also directed the Canterbury Singers, with whom I gave numerous successful performances. Of particular note were concert collaborations the Festival Chamber Orchestra; I look forward to renewing my association with them as Director of Whitstable Choral Society.

A significant turning point in my choral conducting career was the founding of Canterbury Cathedral’s Girls’ Choir in 2014. During the past six years, the choir has performed at numerous high-profile occasions, including a service attended by HM the Queen and HRH the Duke of Edinburgh, and the consecration service of the Church of England’s first female diocesan Bishop. It regularly collaborates with world-class ensembles, recently including The English Concert, Fretwork, The Harmonious Society of Tickle-Fiddle Gentlemen, His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts and VOCES8. The choir has recorded for Decca Records, Signum Classics and BBC Music Magazine, has featured as artist of the week on Classic FM and Apple Music, and has performed live on BBC and ITV television.