Music head bows out

Ilkley Gazette: Keiron Anderson, who is to focus on composing and conducting Keiron Anderson, who is to focus on composing and conducting

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A professional musician who has inspired generations of local people is to leave his post at Ilkley Grammar School to concentrate on composing and his work as a conductor.

Kieron Anderson, 58, has been Head of Music at Ilkley Grammar since 1996, but first began teaching brass at schools in the 1980s.

He was also head of Ilkley Music Centre before taking on his post as Head of Music at the school.

Mr Anderson, who lives at Carlton, near Guiseley, now plans to split his time between conducting several orchestras and bands, and other musical activities outside of school – including continuing to compose his own music.

Mr Anderson said: “IGS is a very good school if which I am sure, the community is quite proud and it has been a privilege to work with some super students and dedicated teachers.

During my time here we created four original musicals and arranged ten others to enable the greatest number of students to participate.

The collaboration with local author Neil Hanson resulted in a successful adaptation of Sir Terry Pratchett's novel, The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents, performed at the King’s Hall three years ago.”

He added: “Although none of the musicals have been published, there have been performances by other schools and they may yet be repeated here in years to come.”

Mr Anderson did not start teaching until he was over 30, as he had been a professional musician since leaving the Royal Northern College of Music in 1977, playing with many professional orchestras and then working as a musical director on cruise liners.

He first came to Ilkey to teach brass in the area’s middle schools, and at Ilkley Grammar, and he conducted the bands at Ilkley Music Centre every Saturday morning.

Before Bradford and Ilkley College sold the college building, he became head of Ilkley Music Centre - at a time when over 350 people came to play every week.

Some players are still sitting in bands he conducts today.

Mr Anderson is currently musical director of The Yorkshire Wind Orchestra, Nottingham Symphonic Winds, Harlequin Brass, The Phoenix Band, Wetherby Silver Band.

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