Picture of Stephen Gowland

Stephen Gowland

Stephen Gowland, a native of Norwich, was born in 1955 to supportive amateur musical parents. He sang, with his father, in their parish church choir and learned both violin and piano.

At the age of nine he became a chorister in Norwich Cathedral Choir. When his time as a treble was over he was extremely fortunate to be asked, by the organist Brian Runnett, to become a Choral Scholar. It is to his encouragement and training that Stephen attributes much of what has followed in his life. He won a Choral Scholarship to Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge to read Music. He also sang in Jesus College Chapel Choir and performed as violinist or viola player in many ensembles.

He has from that time made his career as a teacher, of Music and French, in a wide variety of schools. He has always tried to link his teaching with singing and has performed as a counter-tenor soloist and alto lay clerk in many church and cathedral choirs. He was, from 1981 to 2010, a lay clerk in Hereford Cathedral Choir.

Mostly due to the encouragement of the late John Martyn he gradually found himself as a composer. He has written songs and pieces for choir, many of which were given their first performances under John's direction. In 1996 he was commissioned by The Friends of Hereford Cathedral to write an anthem for the occasion on which Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth opened the new Library Building. He also composed a film score for the Our Town Theatre project, sponsored by McDonalds, and conducted it in the Millennium Dome.

There are currently two of his compositions available on commercial recordings by Hereford Cathedral Choir under the direction of the organist emeritus Dr Roy Massey. The communion motet O Salutaris Hostia and a setting of the old carol text Gabriel's Message.

Stephen now teaches class music, theory, singing, violin, viola and keyboards at both primary and secondary levels. He has a growing practice of private pupils of all ages at his home in the centre of Hereford.

These are available free for download, but if in return you would like to make a small donation to Hereford Cathedral Perpetual Trust it would be very much appreciated.

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