Robert A Howard is an accomplished musician, and regularly in demand as a soloist (bassoon), orchestral player and accompanist (piano). He also plays violin, viola and percussion, and sings bass.
January was a busy month for Robert, packed with 40th birthday celebrations with friends, family, colleagues and fellow musicians.
Rob recently had the privilege of conducting the Liverpool Mozart Orchestra in rehearsal for the first time, as they prepared for their 11 February concert featuring Elgar’s Cello Concerto, Dvorak’s Symphony No. 8 and Mendelssohn’s Ruy Blas overture.
On Sunday 12 February, the new Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral Youth Choir sing Robert’s choral composition Ave verum corpus, under director James Luxton. Written for Prescot Parish Church Choir and first performed by them in Holy Week 2016, this setting of the traditional Latin text forms part of a mass at 7pm in the Metropolitan Cathedral Crypt. (Visit the Choral & Vocal Works section to listen to an electronic recording of the work.)
Finally, please join Robert and MD Jill Hyde at St Barnabas’s Church, Liverpool, as they conduct the Phoenix Concert Orchestra in An Evening at the Movies on Saturday 18 March. It starts at 7.30pm, and tickets are £6 on the door.
Pictured: Dinner with Basil, Sybil and Manuel as part of the Faulty Towers Dining Experience was a particular highlight of Rob’s 40th year so far!
Dr Robert Howard has received a national award for his achievements with the Prescot Festival of Music & the Arts.
Rob founded the festival in 2005 and remains its artistic director over a decade later. Having begun as a weekend event, it now runs to 10 days every June and showcases an array of musical, artistic and cultural talent from the local community, the North West region and beyond.
In recognition of his pioneering work, BAFA, the British Arts Festival Association, has presented him with the Exceptional Service Award 2016. Announced at BAFA’s November 2016 conference in Hull, the certificate was officially presented to Rob in person during the Mayor of Prescot’s Charity Christmas Concert on 8 December.
(On an a related note, that concert, which is organised annually by the Prescot Festival, attracted a record 420 people and raised over £1,100 for local charities. Local school, church and community choirs were joined by Brassworks Quintet for the lively family occasion.)
Picture: Revd John Taylor, Vicar of Prescot, presents Robert with his award
Dr Robert Howard will be playing Elgar’s Romance (for bassoon and orchestra) this Tuesday, 6 December, with the South Liverpool Orchestra. The Christmas concert also features the music of Dvorak, Wagner and Vaughan Williams, as well as festive carols. It takes place at Hope University Chapel, Hope Park, L16 9JD, at 8pm, and costs £4 on the door. A delicious buffet is included.
Today (Sunday 4 December) saw a successful performance of Robert’s carol A Babe Is Born, by Prescot Parish Church Choir. They sing it again this Thursday night (8 December) as part of the Mayor of Prescot’s Charity Christmas Concert, at 8pm at St Mary’s Church, Prescot. Tickets are £5 on the door, and children are free with an accompanying adult.
The choir sing it for the third and final time at the Festival of Lessons and Carols on Sunday 18 December at 6.30pm, again at St Mary’s.
Photo by Alan Humphreys