Yan Pascal Tortelier
Our President, Yan Pascal Tortelier is a French conductor and violinist. Born in Paris, he is the son of the cellist Paul Tortelier, and the brother of Maria de la Pau. Tortelier began piano and violin studies at age 4. At age 14, he was a first-prize winner for violin at the Paris Conservatoire.
Tortelier has worked and recorded extensively in the United Kingdom. He was principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra from 1989 to 1992. He served as Principal Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in Manchester from 1992 to 2003, and now has the title of conductor emeritus with the orchestra. He has also been a Principal Guest Conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain (NYOGB).
Tortelier served as Principal Guest Conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra from 2005 to 2008. He was principal conductor of the Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo (OSESP) from 2009 to 2011, and had the title of honorary guest conductor with the OSESP from 2011 to 2013. Tortelier first guest-conducted the Iceland Symphony Orchestra (ISO) in 1998. In October 2015, the ISO announced the appointment of Tortelier as its next chief conductor, effective with the 2016-2017 season, with an initial contract of 3 years.
Tortelier’s recordings include his own orchestration of Ravel’s Trio. He is a regular recording artist for Chandos Records, and has conducted commercial recordings for Chandos with the BBC Philharmonic, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and the OSESP.
Howard Rogerson became Conductor of Settle Orchestra in 1992 after being asked to guest conduct the Orchestra in a joint performance of Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’ with Craven Opera Group. It was during his 15-year tenure that the Orchestra underwent its most significant period of change, growing both in terms of numbers of players and standard of playing. He developed a strong community-orientated focus for the Orchestra and this was maintained through his encouragement of players of all abilities. He also introduced the junior membership scheme, which epitomised his policy of providing opportunities for youngsters to experience orchestral playing. This initiative has ensured that there is always a refreshing mix of ages within the orchestra.
During his time with the orchestra, Howard worked in partnership with three leaders, beginning with Anne Heaton in 1992. Kenneth Mitchell took over in 2001, followed by Tracey Keeley in 2002. In their respective fields of wind and strings, conductor and leaders used their professional playing and peripatetic teaching experience to lead frequent sectional rehearsals, helping players improve and develop their skills.
Howard’s choice of programmes expanded and improved the orchestra’s repertoire whilst at the same time giving its members the chance to play many different styles of music. Concert programmes ranged from symphonies and concertos to ballet, opera and light music pieces, and only very rarely were any works repeated. Under Howard’s directorship, the orchestra performed well over 300 works in 90 regular concerts and various special events. Several of these were joint concerts with the Langcliffe Singers, including the Verdi Requiem and Mendelssohn’s Elijah.
Howard’s 38 years as a professional clarinettist provided the contacts that led to concerto performances with Marat Bisengaliev (violin), Benjamin Frith (piano) and the Gould Trio. He also helped to initiate two very successful day workshops, attended by over 70 musicians from Yorkshire, Lancashire and Cumbria, and a World Premiere of ‘Striding Dales’ by Christopher Beardsley, both events supported by Making Music.
On his retirement in 2007, Settle Orchestra awarded Howard the title of Emeritus Conductor, in recognition of his important contribution to the Society and his many years of dedication to its development and success. Howard became the vice-president of Settle Orchestra following the sad death of the previous incumbent, Arthur Butterworth.
In 2007, Howard fulfilled his dream of running and conducting a professional seaside orchestra by forming the Promenade Concert Orchestra of Morecambe (PCO).
Using his many years of experience, and his own extensive library of light orchestral music, Howard and his orchestra quickly built up a large and faithful following, and they perform regularly to sell-out audiences at their home, The Platform. The enthusiastic response and support for the PCO allows this charming music to be heard again by a wider audience.
The PCO season consists of four concerts, each with a different theme, including Palm Court selections, music from the shows and the music of Vienna with its waltzes and polkas.
For further information and to book tickets, visit The Platform website, or phone 01524 412552.
Elspeth Slorach is a young conductor based in the North West. She graduated from the University of Manchester in 2015 with a First Class degree in Music. In her time at the University, Elspeth was the Musical Director of the University’s Chamber Choir, Ad Solem, and Assistant Conductor of the University Chorus and The Cosmo Singers. She was an Orchestral Conductor for the Manchester University Music Society, working with many ensembles including the Symphony Orchestra and as Musical Director for the Opera in 2015. On graduating, Elspeth took up the post as Trainee Vocal Delivery Artist for Opera North Education, assistant conducting the Opera North Children’s Chorus and Youth Chorus as well as working in primary schools and with community choirs across the North. Currently she is the Musical Director of Hallam Choral Society and Preston Orpheus Choir, Director of Music at St Peter’s Church in Hale, guest conductor for Settle Orchestra and Musical Director of Kantos Chamber Choir. Elspeth is also a conductor for the Hallé’s Corporate Choir Scheme and Assistant Conductor for the Hallé’s Youth Choirs. She has recently worked with the Lancashire Chamber Orchestra and has an upcoming engagement with the Bolton Symphony Orchestra. Elspeth began studying for a Master of Performance in Conducting at the Royal Northern College of Music in September 2016 where she is Assistant Conductor for their Chamber Choir and Symphony Chorus.
Anne Heaton studied violin and piano at London College of Music, winning many awards and leading all of the College orchestras. She then studied at the National Centre of Orchestral Studies and worked with some of the world’s top conductors including Sir Simon Rattle.
After working in Germany for a few years, Anne began teaching in London and soon realised that this was the career she wanted to follow. She has worked for the North Yorkshire County Music Service for over twenty five years and is Assistant Head of the Service.
Anne performs regularly throughout the North West and has been leader of the Lancashire Chamber Orchestra since 2004, performing at the Bridgewater Hall, Royal Northern College of Music and The Lowry. She particularly enjoys encouraging young musicians in the Craven area to join their local orchestra.