Chris Houlding joins Birmingham Conservatoire as Head of Brass

Birmingham Conservatoire, part of Birmingham City University, has welcomed Chris Houlding as the new Head of Brass.

While studying at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, Chris toured Japan with the London Symphony Orchestra at the invitation of trombonist Denis Wick and became Principal Trombone of the Orchestra of Opera North at the age of 21.

In 1986 Chris joined the Royal Northern College of Music where he held positions as a visiting international tutor and senior tutor in brass before moving to Germany as Professor at Folkwang University of the Arts.

As well as appearing as Guest Principal with all major UK Symphony Orchestras, Chris continues to lead masterclasses and workshops throughout the world including St Petersburg, Oslo and Budapest and regularly performs with Superbrass, Symphonic Brass of London, Philharmonia, Scottish Chamber and Mahler Chamber Orchestras.

An active conductor in all styles, Chris has undertaken projects with the Bochum Symphoniker, Duisburg Philharmoniker and Lancashire Schools Symphony together with ensembles at the Royal Academies in Aarhus and Oslo, Guildhall and Trinity, Grimethorpe Colliery Band and DUT Yorkshire Imperial, winning the First Section National Championship in 2005.

As examiner and adjudicator, Chris has served on international juries including Turkish Young Musician of the Year, Norwegian and British Brand Championships and Feis Ceoil Dublin. Chris is also currently Vice Chair of the International Trombone Association and former President of the British Trombone Society and regularly contributes to brass journals. His solo CD, Houlding His Own is issued on the SRC label, while a second duet recording project with international colleagues is to be released soon.

Expressing his enthusiasm at joining Birmingham Conservatoire, Chris said: “I’m delighted to be able to head up the brass team at Birmingham Conservatoire and contribute to the development of one of the UK’s most comprehensive and multifaceted musical organisations.

“I look forward to promoting international initiatives and enhancing curriculum to reflect the increasing resourcefulness required by musicians today.”