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Ralph Allwood

Ralph Allwood

Ralph Allwood is well known as a choral director, but his expertise extends to composing, arranging, public, speaking teaching, writing and adjudicating. He is a great authority on vocal and choral music for adults and young people. 

In 1980 Ralph started the Eton choral course, which was a one-week summer school. There are now seven courses each year which, together with their flagship Rodolfus Choir, have brought choral singing to seven thousand 16 to 24 year-olds over the last 30 years. During this time he has conducted choirs in 40 live broadcasts for Radio Three.

He had the original idea for the celebrated Channel Four documentary A Boy Called Alex and has also appeared with Gareth Malone on his programmes. He has written choral music extensively for film and TV.

After 26 years as Director of Music at Eton College, he is now developing the same choral opportunities for state school children in London by founding Inner Voices and, for children aged 8 to 15, The Junior Choral Course. He is conductor of the National Youth Choir of Wales.

His skills as a workshop and ‘Come and Sing’ leader are in great popular demand, with choral workshops of some sort every Saturday. He judges many competitions, notably the Choir of the Year, the Llangollen Eisteddfod and the Cork International Choral Competition.

He is a Fellow Commoner of Queens’ College, Cambridge, an Honorary Fellow of University College, Durham and a Choral Advisor to Trinity College, Oxford. He has been awarded a Doctorate of Music by Aberdeen University and created an MBE in the 2012 New Year’s Honours list.