Philip Harper became Musical Director of the Cory Band in 2012. Within 18 months he had steered it back to the Number One World Rank by winning three of the four major titles in the brass band calendar: the National, the European, and Brass in Concert (with a runner-up prize in the other, the British Open!) as well as receiving media awards for the band's CD recordings, and plaudits for the concert tour of Australia. Philip won the coveted Conductor of the Year Award for 2013, voted for by 10,000 readers of the website 4barsrest.com. With previous bands, Tongwynlais Temperance Band and Flowers Band, he achieved unprecedented contest success, as well as winning acclaim for his entertaining concert performances.
A resident of Gloucester, Philip was the Editor of Brass Band World magazine between 2009 and 2015 and, since 2005 has been the Music Editor of the historic Wright and Round publishing company. He is also in demand as a freelance conductor, educator and adjudicator with bands of all levels in many countries, and in September 2015 made his debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Brass at the Cadogan Hall in London.
Philip is a prolific composer and his original works and arrangements are played all over the world. In 2012 he composed Journey for the 650 musicians of the Gloucester Music Service Massed Ensemble, conducting the first performance in a packed Royal Albert Hall at the Last Night of the Schools Prom. You can find out more detail and listen to audio excerpts of Philip's music at www.philipharper.co.uk.
En route to this point in his life, Philip graduated from the University of Bristol in 1994 before going on to take a Masters Degree in Composition and a Post-Graduate Certificate in Education. He had a successful performing career and was the principal tenor horn of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain and the Sun Life Band in Bristol, as well as winning through to the Brass Final of the BBC Young Musician of the Year in 1991. Between 1996 and 1998 he lived in Japan and was a guest soloist with most of the 'British-style' brass bands with whom he still keeps a close connection, visiting annually.