Roy Stratford was very lucky to have had a music teacher at school who had been a student of the great Austrian modernist composer Anton Webern, and who inspired in him a great love of music and a particular interest in the Austro-Germanic tradition from Bach to Stockhausen.
Roy studied music at Reading University where he was music director of the Opera Society. As a postgraduate at the Royal College of Music, he studied conducting with Norman Del Mar and received advice and encouragement from Andrzej Panufnik and Sir Georg Solti. He has since developed a very varied musical career as a pianist, conductor, composer, lecturer and teacher.
As a pianist Roy has worked with many fine musicians, including Jack Brymer, Gervase de Peyer, John Harle and Susan Milan. He also has a regular duo partnership with violinist Oliver Nelson. He has worked with many orchestras, including the Royal Ballet, the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, and was selected to conduct Constant Lambert’s Piano Concerto on BBC Radio 3. He has guest-conducted many leading amateur groups and has been conductor of the Woking Symphony Orchestra since 1984. Our concert on 21st June 2014 marked Roy's thirtieth anniversary with the orchestra.
Maintaining a wide interest in music education, Roy has been involved with the Baylis programme at English National Opera and with the London Philharmonic’s Education programme. He also lectures at the Wigmore Hall and at West Dean College. He is head of ensemble at St. Paul's School and teaches piano at Richmond College where he also runs the Youth Training Orchestra. His compositions and arrangements have been published by Oxford University Press and Faber Music.
Recent highlights have been a performance of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.22 with the Surrey County Youth Orchestra, a debut at Benslow lecturing on music history, concerts in Dortmund and Prague and an appearance at the Haselmere Festival. Roy has also recently completed a series of lectures on Beethoven at the Wigmore Hall.