About Arun Choral Society

The society was founded in 1912 - over 100 years ago. The choir is made up of around 110 singers from the age of 17 upwards. Singers come from a wide variety of backgrounds, but all share the enjoyment of choral singing.

joe_paxton.jpg

Joe Paxton

Musical Director
 

Joe is a Brighton-based Music Director, currently reading for a Ph.D. in Music at Sussex University where he teaches on the undergraduate music course. Joe is Co-Musical Director of the Brighton Early Music Festival Community Choir, Assistant Musical Director of Brighton Gay Men’s Chorus and Founder and Director of Opera Alumnus. He was fortunate enough to study conducting under Guy Woolfenden OBE, formerly of the Royal Shakespeare Company and Piano under the tutelage of Dr Julian Hellaby. 

 
ian_stearn.jpg

Ian Stearn

Assistant to the musical director
 

Ian studied organ with Richard Latham and Nicholas Danby and piano with Alasdair Graham at the Royal College of Music in London. 

He was Director of Music at Dorset House School in Bury and organist of Bury Church for over thirty years. 
Ian joined Arun Choral Society in 1996 and has been Assistant to the Director for most of that time, helping with rehearsals and accompanying the Musical Director when needed. 

Ian is now enjoying a well-deserved retirement;  apart from some teaching, he is organist of Birdham Church and runs the Itchenor Village Voices.

 
sue-graham-smith.jpg

Sue Graham Smith

Accompanist
 

Sue Graham Smith has worked for many years as a freelance piano accompanist and music director. 

Sue has been Music Director to Opera Brava and 2 Anglican churches, and Assistant Music Director/Pianist to Cantate Youth Choir. She has examined for ABRSM, coached over 30 operas, and worked with BBC Symphony Chorus, English National Opera, D’Oyly Carte, Kent Opera and many other choirs & opera companies.

She has also played on BBC Songs of Praise, Gloria Hunniford Show, and Maestro (with celebrity conductors). 

Sue now works in both Hertfordshire and West Sussex, where she is Pianist to both Arun and Hertford Choral Societies and leads singing groups for people with dementia & their carers.

 

President and vice president of the society

President of Arun Choral Society

Georgina Susan Fitzalan-Howard, Duchess of Norfolk

Vice president of Arun Choral Society

Dr James Walsh