Calne choral - Profiles
Philip Springate - Calne Choral Director of Music
A former Calne Bentley Grammar school pupil, Philip was inspired by a young music teacher called David Price and there, grew a great love of music. This led to him going on to study music at Dartington College of Arts.
Philip’s first contact with Calne Choral Society came at this time as bass soloist in a performance of the Messiah! This was a joint venture with Fynamore School, directed by David Cooke.
Following a year working as a teacher of brass with John Ridgeon for the London borough of Redbridge, he returned to Wiltshire to follow a career as a class music teacher.
Before retirement as Director of Music at the John of Gaunt School in Trowbridge, he built an enviable reputation for the quality of instrumental and choral work in the school.
Philip is no stranger to the musical life of Wiltshire, having been Music Director for Trowbridge Light Operatic, Trowbridge Philharmonic, Trowbridge Youth Theatre and Calne Choral Society. As well as singing and playing horn in countless concerts and productions, he has been an adjudicator for the Mid Somerset Festival and music competitions around the West, for many years. He has sung, or played for all the previous Directors of Calne Choral Society, David Price, John Nourse and David White.
Our accompanist is Alta Ridgway.
This is how she describes herself and the experience she brings to Calne Choral.
“Originally from South Africa, I came to the UK for a gap year after completing my Music degree at the University of Pretoria. I settled in Calne to teach Music at St Mary’s and continued to do so until 2016. Nowadays I am a busy mum and wife, running Ridgway Music Studio from my home in Cherhill, teaching piano, accompanying and performing when the occasion arises. Singing is also a passion and you will find me in nurseries and in the community singing with under-fives as an Early Years Music Specialist, delivering Colourstrings sessions. I am thrilled to be a part of Calne Choral Society and am excited to be working, together with Phil and the choir, on some great choral music.”