Headshot of Nicholas Chalmers, a white man wearing a dark polo shirt

Following a selection process involving a panel of leading industry professionals, trustees, audition workshops and feedback from current choir members, the National Youth Choir is delighted to announce the appointment of Nicholas Chalmers as Principal Conductor of the National Youth Choir (18-25 Years).

Recently appointed Associate Conductor: Learning with the BBC Singers, Nicholas is also a Senior Associate Artist of the Royal Opera House and will make his conducting debut there in 2024.

He made his BBC Proms conducting debut in 2020 with the BBC Singers and most recently worked with the group at the 2023 Last Night of The Proms.

Nicholas is one of the UK’s leading conductors, driven by a passion to bring classical and choral music to the next generation. He is widely recognised as having established some of the most exciting and highly successful artistic and education projects in recent years, having been the Founding Artistic Director of Nevill Holt Opera and conductor of Northern Ireland Opera.

He succeeds former National Youth Choir Principal Conductor Ben Parry, and has already begun work, planning projects for 2024. He joins the organisation’s other Principal Conductors, Greg Beardsell, Lucy Joy Morris and Joanna Tomlinson.

Lucy Hollins, Creative Director of the National Youth Choir, said:

I am thrilled to welcome Nicholas as Principal Conductor of the National Youth Choir (18-25 Years). He brings a wealth of experience, exceptional musicianship, fantastic creativity, and values which absolutely align with our own. I am very much looking forward to working with Nicholas to take this wonderful choir on exciting new musical adventures, and to develop new ways to engage all young people in singing.”

Nicholas Chalmers said:

“I am delighted to have been appointed Principal Conductor of the National Youth Choir (18-25 Years). The Choir is a world-class ensemble, famous for the excellence, fun and friendship at the heart of everything they do. I am very much looking forward to working with this talented group of young singers; I have always been impressed by the Choir’s versatility, vibrant sound and thrilling performances. I feel very privileged to be part of this next chapter and look forward to all our collaborations together and an exciting future ahead.”

The National Youth Choir champions choral singing and music-making across the UK. Its choirs have over 900 members aged 9-25 years and its Learning and Engagement programme introduces choral singing to more than 4,000 young people in schools and communities each year. In addition to this, the Young Composers and Fellowship schemes support musicians in the early stages of their professional careers. The National Youth Choir is celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2023.

Photo credit: Genevieve Girling