Creed will maintain connection with Choir as Chorus Director Emeritus

The London Philharmonic Choir, a world-renowned choral ensemble, today 22 February 2024 announces the retirement of its esteemed Artistic Director, Neville Creed, at the end of the 2024/25 season after a distinguished tenure of 30 years. Neville’s unwavering dedication and exceptional contributions have played a pivotal role in the Choir’s remarkable journey and outstanding musical achievements. He will maintain a connection with the Choir as Chorus Director Emeritus.

Neville Creed has directed the Choir with distinction and critical acclaim since 1994, working alongside many of the world’s leading conductors, both preparing and conducting the Choir in a huge variety of repertoire for more than 500 performances in the UK and abroad. Under his artistic leadership, the London Philharmonic Choir has reached new heights in the world of choral music and has received repeated critical acclaim for its outstanding performances. Most recently, the Choir’s performance of Tippett’s The Midsummer Marriage with the London Philharmonic Orchestra under Principal Conductor Edward Gardner won Gramophone’s Opera Award 2023.

Neville Creed, outgoing Artistic Director of the London Philharmonic Choir, says: ‘It has been a huge honour and pleasure to work with the Choir and the London Philharmonic Orchestra with their stellar conductors for the last 30 years and I look forward to seeing them go from strength to strength in the future. Particular highlights have been the recent Mahler Symphony No. 2 and Schoenberg’s Gurrelieder with Ed Gardner. I also relished the opportunity to conduct the chamber orchestra elements of Britten’s War Requiem together with Vladimir Jurowski in Moscow, Vienna and London. I am honoured to maintain my connection with the Choir having been offered the role of Chorus Director Emeritus.’

Tessa Bartley, London Philharmonic Choir Chairman, says: ’Neville Creed is a world-class choral director with an exceptional ear for detail, keeping the Choir at the top of its game. We are all so fortunate to have been taught by him, developing our choral skills under his leadership over the past three decades. We have enjoyed incredible artistic success under Neville’s direction, notably, performances of modern repertoire such as Colin Matthews’s Metamorphosis, Tippett’s The Midsummer Marriage and Ligeti’s Requiem. At times, the difficulty of these pieces seemed insurmountable but we always knew that if anyone was going to be able to prepare us for performing such challenging repertoire, with his dry wit and humour, it was Neville. As the Choir’s longest serving chorus director in its almost 80-year history, we’re delighted to be creating the role of Chorus Director Emeritus for Neville. The Board and members of the Choir extend their heartfelt gratitude to Neville for his dedication to the Choir and wish him a well-deserved retirement.’

Edward Gardner, Principal Conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, saysNeville’s 30-year tenure with the London Philharmonic Choir is a shining star in our universe for his brilliance, commitment, good humour, and passion for amateur choral singing, demonstrated in over 500 projects. When I stand in front of the Choir, I’m frequently astounded by the musicality and prowess of the group, and this is stewarded by Neville’s skill and advocacy. They tackle fearlessly some of the most challenging works of the repertoire: Schoenberg’s  Gurrelieder, Ligeti’s Requiem, and Tippett’s The Midsummer Marriage (for which they won a Gramophone Award this year). Neville will be missed, but I’m so happy he’ll keep his relationship with the London Philharmonic Choir, and his legacy with the Orchestra will remain for ever.

David Burke, Chief Executive of the London Philharmonic Orchestra says: I would like to offer a huge congratulations to Neville for such a successful and distinguished 30 years with the London Philharmonic Choir. The LPO has become known for its programming of large-scale, complex choral works and Neville’s expert direction, knowledge and love for the repertoire ensures that concerts with the LPC are always a major highlight of each season. I wish him well in his retirement and am thrilled he will be honoured as Chorus Director Emeritus.

Working with the artistic leadership of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Choir’s board of directors has embarked on a succession plan to ensure continued musical success as the organisation approaches its 80th birthday. The Choir is in the process of appointing an Associate Chorus Director to work alongside Neville during his final season, focusing on vocal health and bringing through the next generation of choral singers. During the summer, the Choir will begin the search for a Chorus Director to succeed Neville, with both appointments ensuring a seamless transition and continuation of artistic excellence.

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