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“One of the very best amateur groups in the country”

Classical Music Magazine

“The most professional-sounding of non-professional orchestras”

The Sunday Telegraph

“Kensington Symphony Orchestra once again scores over most professional orchestras”

Classical Source

Stuart Barr

Stuart Barr

Stuart Barr

Stuart has a dual career as a Conductor and Singing Coach working in the West End, TV and for choirs. He has been musical director for Dame Shirley Bassey since November 2009.

He has musically-directed, assisted, supervised and/or orchestrated over 20 shows in the West End and internationally. As musical director to Dame Shirley Bassey, he’s conducted her performances at Carnegie Hall, the Royal Albert Hall, Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium and several TV appearances, conducting various orchestras worldwide including the LSO and the RPO. Stuart also recently finished a run on Broadway with the veteran actor John Standing performing Noël Coward, and conducted London’s 2010 St George’s Day celebrations in Trafalgar Square in a celebration of British Music Hall.

As a singing coach he has worked extensively for the BBC, with programmes such as R2's Voice of Musical Theatre Competition, the TV opera The Little Prince and The Water Diviner’s Tale for BBC Proms, and adjudicates for the BBC Performing Arts Fund. He runs a busy private teaching studio, where his students span from opera through to musical theatre and pop, both privately and for record companies.

Recent choral work include Chorus Master for the Sondheim 80th Birthday Prom concert at the Albert Hall. He frequently gives workshops on Idiomatic Choral Sound; this work was the basis of an edition of Aled Jones’ The Choir for Radio 3. He has judged BBC’s Choir of the Year for the past 3 competitions, and also writes extensively on vocal health and the technical side of the voice for Sing Up.

He was President of the British Voice Association (2009-10), and was recently awarded an HonARAM by the Royal Academy of Music.

KSO performance history

09/03/2013 at St John's Smith Square