Countertenor Jake Barlow was appointed Musical Director with effect from 1 January 2020. He read for a degree in Literae Humaniores as a choral scholar at Worcester College, Oxford, where he sang with various noted ensembles, including the choirs of Magdalen and Merton colleges, and Schola Cantorum of Oxford. Upon graduating he moved on to successive postgraduate Choral Scholarships at Truro and Norwich Cathedrals, where he was an active member of thriving music departments. A period as a Lay Vicar in the choir of Chichester followed, where he performed with a range of ensembles, from the Band of HM Royal Marines to Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.
A two-time winner of the Douglas Steele Foundation award for musical development, he has undertaken solo engagements with the BBC Philharmonic, the Brook Street Band, the Amadeus Orchestra, Hastings Philharmonic, Norwich Baroque, the East Anglian Academy of Early Music, the Sinfonia of Arun, and the English Cornet and Sackbut Ensemble. His concert repertoire includes Handel’s Messiah, Theodora, and Dixit Dominus, Bach’s Magnificat, Johannes-Passion, Matthäus-Passion and Mass in B minor, Mozart’s Requiem, Buxtehüde’s Membra Jesu Nostri, Vivaldi’s Stabat Mater, and Purcell’s Come,Ye Sons of Art to name a few. In early 2017 he made his North American solo debut, headlining a concert of baroque chamber music at the Handel Week Festival in Oak Park, Illinois.
Jake is a recipient of the Licentiate Diploma of Trinity College London and the Fellowship of the London College of Music, and he has performed recitals in the United Kingdom, Belgium, and Hungary. He worked with Willowhayne Records in 2014, and in 2015 he released a solo album of English, French, and American art songs, Under the Greenwood Tree. As a conductor and choir trainer he has worked with a wide variety of groups, from show choirs to chamber choirs, and from orchestras to brass bands. While in Chichester he was the Director of Music for the St Richard Singers, a reputable chamber choir, as well as the founder of their in-house chamber orchestra, the Noviomagus Ensemble. He was also the Associate Conductor of Worthing Choral Society. Jake is now the Music Director of the Nantwich Singers, one of the finest chamber choirs in the North West of England. He is also the Music Director of the Chester St.Cecilia Singers, with whom he appears in concert around the Wales and the North West of England, in addition to cathedral visits around the country.
He has also enjoyed success as an educator, and as well as teaching privately, he has worked on projects as varied as running musical leadership courses for clergy in the Diocese of Truro, working as a vocal animateur for Truro Cathedral’s acclaimed choral outreach scheme, and providing specialist vocal tuition and workshops for teachers as a Vocal Strategist for the Norfolk Music Hub.
Now based in Cheshire, Jake now runs a teaching practice in Crewe, and he is always excited to hear from prospective students. He is also available for running choral singing workshops. www.jake-barlow.com for more information.