Ed Cooke (Musical Director)
David Grierson (Accompanist)
Ed Cooke is the younger half of a father-son business specializing in the building and repair of church organs. For most of his life he has been based around the town of Westbury, Wiltshire and was at one point the choirmaster of All Saints' church in the centre of Westbury. Following his postgraduate studies in choral conducting at Cambridge, Ed took up the post as Musical Director of Hangzhou Youth Choir in China. He was there for one year, training and recruiting the choristers from all over the city, visiting lots of primary schools, and establishing new choirs with the goal of singing in English. At the end of his year, Ed had raised a choir of 200 children singing to an audience of over 1000. Aside from organ building, Ed is Director of Music at the Church of St Thomas the Apostle in Hanwell, and Youth Choir Director at St Paul's Church, Winchmore Hill. Ed is thrilled to be taking on the role of Musical Director for the Gillingham Singers and is looking forward to much exciting music making in the town and surrounding area.
David is a graduate of both Exeter and London University. He was, for many years, Head of Music and Drama at Shaftesbury School as well as being a part-time OFSTED inspector. Following a lengthy tour of duty in China, where he taught in both international and Chinese schools, he returned to North Dorset in 2009. David is well known as an accompanist, conductor, musical director, writer and occasional speaker; his exploits whilst overseas were serialised in the Blackmore Vale Magazine, winning him an enthusiastic following! David founded and leads the Shaftesbury Community Choir and is a member of the Phoenix Café Orchestra and of the sax ensemble Saxophony.
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