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Adjudicators - 11th March 2023

Please find below details of our fantastic music adjudicators for this year's festival.  

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Alison Sutton

Alison is adjudicating the classical vocal and choral classes at WCAF this year. Alison trained at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and has had a wide-ranging career in opera, oratorio and recital. She has sung at major London concert halls and with several opera companies including Kent Opera, London Opera Factory and Opera de Lyon, touring widely in the UK, Europe and USA.

Alison is a private teacher, choral workshop tutor and has examined extensively as an ABRSM diploma examiner. She has been a final recitals’ panellist at Birmingham Conservatoire and has tutored at Shrewsbury International Summer School and Benslow Music Trust. She is currently singing rehabilitation coach at the Voice Clinic at Cheltenham General Hospital. Her forthcoming book, Vocal Health and Rehabilitation, will be published by Compton Publishing in Spring 2023.

Richard Haslem

Richard is adjudicating the piano, brass and woodwind sections, amongst others. He studied at Sussex University for a degree in Education, specialising in Music and also at the Royal College of Music where he gained a Diploma in Pianoforte Teaching and a Distinction in Grade 8 singing.

Richard was Director of Music at Burgess Hill School for Girls for nearly thirty years where he taught to A level as well as running a variety of extra-curricular activities including Chamber groups, Choirs and Orchestras and has recently retired from full time teaching.

Richard has taught piano and singing to Diploma standard and has also been a Moderator for GCSE Music and an examiner for A Level Music. He is currently an adjudicator for the British and International Federation of Festivals and a Mentor for Music for Youth. Richard also examines for the ABRSM and has completed a number of overseas tours. He is an experienced accompanist, conductor and singer and has worked with a number of different groups in the community including Choral and Operatic Societies. Richard ran his own choir - “ Cantemus”-for over twenty years and raised over £300,000 for charity. He currently enjoys singing 1st Tenor in the Stratford-upon-Avon Chamber Choir.

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Christopher Horner

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Christopher Horner was born in London and studied violin at the Centre for Young  Musicians, Pimlico and then with Eva Graubin at the Royal Academy of Music, Surrey University and as a postgraduate in Barcelona.

He has since played as recitalist, chamber musician and freelancer throughout the UK, Europe, South Africa and Asia with broadcasts including on BBC Radio3 and SABC TV, South Africa. This season has included recitals with both piano and guitar, with recitals in the New Year including Barcelona and at St .David’s Hall, Cardiff.

He performs a wide-ranging repertoire and over the last few years has given the UK premières of the works for violin and piano by the Lithuanian composer Juozas Gruodis (1884-1948) whose music remains virtually unknown outside his native country. A CD of these compositions with pianist John Lenehan was released at the end of 2014 on the Discovery Music and Vision label. His edition of the Gruodis Violin Sonata for the Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre was published in 2016.

Christopher Horner was invited to teach at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in 1999 and was Deputy Head of Strings from 2000-2009.  Since leaving this post his performing and teaching career, now including adjudication at Competitions and Festivals, has continued to expand in the UK and overseas. He teaches violin at the Junior Conservatoire of RWCMD, at the Haberdashers Schools, Monmouth and at Howell’s School, Cardiff.

Since 2015 he has been a UK and International Examiner for Trinity College London.

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