The Brighton & Hove Philharmonic Society Limited was established in 1941 to promote and assist the study, practice, knowledge and appreciation of music, and generally advance the cause of music.
It aims to bring pleasure to the local community through providing high quality, varied classical music programmes, professionally performed, at realistic prices to the audience, within the Society’s available resources.
The principal forum for these activities is the Brighton Dome, where the Society presents an annual series of professional orchestral concerts by the Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra.
Directors/Trustees of BHPS
John Barkshire, CBE, TD,JP,ACIB,DL
Elected to the Board 2013
John’s career has included the Army, the City and the Charity sector.
Elected to the Board 2013
Previously a member of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Daniel has been playing with the BPO for 20 years and is currently Principal Second Violin, whilst also enjoying a career performing and teaching throughout the world.
Daniel studied as a scholar at the Purcell School of Music, Royal Northern College of Music and the Royal Conservatory of Music (Canada). As a soloist and chamber musician, Daniel has performed at the Wigmore Hall (London), Carnegie Hall (New York), Sheldonian Theatre (Oxford) and Queen Elizabeth Hall (London).
Formerly Head of Strings at Stowe School he is now violin tutor at Lancing College and Peter Symonds College, Winchester. Daniel works with many Youth Orchestras nationally and internationally and regularly coaches at the Royal College of Music.
Daniel lives in Brighton and is co-founder and artistic director of the Alfriston Summer Music Festival.
Elected to the Board 2016
Stephen was born and grew up in Brighton and his very first exposure to orchestral music was attending free BPO concerts as a 15 year old under the sponsorship scheme with AMEX. The experience of hearing Scheherazade and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, among others, was formative in forging his future career in music education. Having recently moved back to Sussex with his young family, Stephen wanted to offer his skills and experience to an organisation which helped shaped his musical future.
Nicolas Chisholm, MBE (Chairman)
Elected to the Board 2010
Elected as Chairman November 2014
Until his retirement in 2010, Nicolas Chisholm was Headmaster for twenty-two years of the Yehudi Menuhin School, a Specialist Music School which educates 70 gifted young musicians from all over the world. It was his experience as a professional musician as Tenor Lay Clerk in Chichester Cathedral Choir and as an academic that took him to the Yehudi Menuhin School. Before then he was Head of Classics and a housemaster at Hurstpierpoint College.
Nicolas Chisholm began his musical training while at Christ’s Hospital School from where he won a choral scholarship to St John’s College, Cambridge. He studied with Wilfred Brown, Sir Peter Pears, Ryland Davies and Jane Manning. He attended the Britten-Pears School in Snape in 1980 and 1981, specialising in Oratorio and English Song.
Nicolas Chisholm continued to maintain a professional singing career whilst running the Yehudi Menuhin School. He has sung with many of the choral societies in the South of England, and recently given a number of solo recitals. He was a founder member of New Sussex Opera singing several roles, and before that was with Opera 70 singing the eponymous hero in Britten’s Albert Herring and Captain McHeath in the Beggar’s Opera. He also directed Mozart’s Don Giovanni.
He is President–elect of the Incorporated Society of Musicians, Chairman of Trustees of the Brighton Philharmonic Society, and a council member of Brighton Early Music Festival. As a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Musicians, he has been involved in taking the young professional musicians who are Yeomen Prize winners of the Company into primary schools for interactive music workshops in London.
He is a governor of St Paul’s Girls’ School and chairman of the Education Committee. Until recently was a Governor of the Royal Ballet School and Chairman of the National Association of Music and Dance Schools. He ran the Stoke d’Abernon Festival in 1996 and 2006, and in that same year completed a Concert Hall at the Yehudi Menuhin School in memory of its founder, Yehudi Menuhin.
He was awarded the MBE in 2011 for services to Music Education.
Apart from his passion for music, he is interested in print-making, archaeology, photography and classic cars.
Elected to the Board 2008
Neil is a graduate in Politics from the University of York. His career in University administration included spells at Birkbeck College, Bradford University, the Royal Postgraduate Medical School at Hammersmith Hospital, Kings College Institute of Psychiatry and the University of Sussex from where he retired as Registrar and Secretary in December 2004. Since retiring he has visited every horse racing track in the UK and Ireland, been involved in charity work and plays too much golf.
Sue McHugh (Honorary Treasurer)
Elected to the Board 2010
Elected as Honorary Treasurer December 2011
Sue is a Chartered Accountant who is currently employed as Chief Operating Officer at the University of Brighton where her responsibilities also include estates, information services, student accommodation, philanthropy and health and safety. She started her career in the private sector working for several large firms of accountants in audit and management consultancy before moving into the health service and then local government.
Elected to the Board 2015
Ken is a retired University academic (relating education policy and development to business administration) who currently chairs the Brighton & Hove Council’s Independent Remuneration Panel.
Ken has had a keen interest in music since he was a choirboy and member of the school choir, which was fuelled by teenage visits to the Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall and Rosebery Avenue. Living in Maiden Lane meant being able to enjoy opera on a regular basis at the ENO and he became a Friend of Covent Garden. Other hobbies included playing club cricket for many years and travelling round Europe exploring its history and local cuisines.
In retirement, Ken has continued his European travels with his wife Asta, enjoying visits to a variety of Opera Houses and Concert Halls including Drottningholm, Vienna and Berlin. They have also enjoyed bringing their garden into mature fruition. Since living in Brighton they have become regular Brighton Philharmonic concert-goers as well as making the most of their proximity to Glyndebourne.
Elected to the Board 2012
Chris Thomson recently retired as Principal of Brighton Hove & Sussex Sixth Form College (BHASVIC) a post he had held since 1998. Prior to this he spent four years teaching in Italy and subsequently at sixth form colleges in the UK.
Attendant at Board meetings
Ian Brignall (Concert Manager)
Ian became BPO’s Concert Manager in October 2009 after a career as a professional Violinist, working with the Philharmonia and other London Orchestras performing great music with great musicians in venues all over the world. This was followed by a second career as an Orchestra Manager, firstly with the Orchestra of English National Opera and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and short spells as Personnel Manager at the Philharmonia and the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra. In addition to his role at the BPO Ian works as a concerts and tours manager working with the English Chamber Orchestra, London Chamber Orchestra, City of London Sinfonia and as a tours manager for IMG artists.
Simon Keane (representing the John Carewe Brighton Orchestra Trust)
Simon attends Board meetings as a non-voting member representing the John Carewe Brighton Orchestra Trust of which he is a Trustee. Simon, who is a retired accountant, has previously served as a full member of the Board from 1992-2001, was the BPO’s Stage Manager for 25 years and was a founding member of the Young Phil in the 1950s. He was also a Trustee of the Brighton Youth Orchestra Trust from 1993-1998.
Catherine Stead (General Administrator/Company Secretary)
Elected as Company Secretary November 2014
Catherine joined BHPS in June 2014 as part-time General Administrator, having previously managed the Conferences & Events department of the University of Sussex for nearly 20 years. A keen singer, she currently performs with the Brighton Orpheus Choir and Women of Note, a small ladies choir. She was elected as Company Secretary at the Society’s AGM in November 2014.
Officers of BHPS
Barry Wordsworth, D.LITT
John Lill, CBE
John Carewe, David House, Jackie Lythell, OBE, Karen Platt, Ronald Power, MBE
Nicolas Chisholm, MBE
General Administrator/Company Secretary:
Accounts & Renewals Administrator:
David Gerrard, ARPS