Musical Director

Graham Tear - Musical Director

Graham was educated at Northampton Grammar School and then at Birmingham Conservatoire studying flute, bassoon and conducting. He won the Midland Institute concerto prize, appearing as flute soloist with the college chamber orchestra at the Aix en Provence Music Festival. After several years as a freelance player, playing with the CBSO, Opera north and Welsh National Opera he taught at Stowe School and Nene College (now Northampton University) and then joined the staff of the Northamptonshire Music Service (now NMPAT).

During his years with the service working as deputy head of woodwind he has conducted most groups including the County Youth Orchestra, County Concert Band and Youth Choir and has regularly taken assorted groups to the National Festival of Music for Youth, winning outstanding performance awards and appearing at the Schools Proms at the Royal Albert Hall.

He has also conducted Towcester Studio Band, Irthlingborough Entertainment Society and Northampton Symphony Orchestra and spent several years directing Northampton Gilbert and Sullivan Group.

He was on the conducting staff of the European Youth Summer Music Course and directed the brass and wind bands for the WMA Summer School. Twenty-five years ago, he founded and still directs Northampton Chamber Orchestra.

Although now semi-retired, he lives in Brixworth and is still very active teaching at Northampton School for Boys and as musical director of Northampton Musical Theatre Company, who will be performing at the Royal Theatre in May and at Derngate in late October. He is also chairman of Northampton Festival of the Performing Arts and plays with the John Clare Wind Quintet as well as assorted other orchestral playing.

He enjoys cooking and tinkering with his model railway and has an amazing collection of hats!
Graham Tear

Neil Brownless - Deputy Musical Director

Neil's musical career began at the age of 7 when he started learning the Violin. He soon saw sense and switched to the Cornet at 9 and later the Trombone at 14. Progressing quickly on the Trombone Neil took his grade 8 after just 3 years of playing.

Neil has completed a Maths degree at Portsmouth University in 2012 where he was Musical Director for the University Big Band and Assistant Conductor for the Wind Band. While at uni Neil played for many bands across the south coast including Portsmouth and Chichester Uni Symphony Orchestras, the Dave Pearson Big Band, Woodfalls Brass Band and Otterbourne Brass Band who he competed with at the 2012 National Brass Band Finals.

Now back in Northampton Neil is working as Recording Projects Co-ordinator for World of Sound in Wellingborough. He plays Principal Trombone for Northampton Symphony Orchestra and Solo Trombone for Brackley Brass Band. Other conducting positions that Neil holds are Deputy Conductor for Brackley Brass Band and Musical Director for Abingdon Concert Band.
Neil Brownless