Aberdeen alumnus awarded US conducting fellowship

Aberdeen alumnus awarded US conducting fellowship

Cole Bendall (Class of 2012) was recently awarded the conducting fellowship with the Miami Music Festival, FL, USA.

A former student of the University of Aberdeen BMus programme, Cole Bendall was awarded the Symphony Conducting Fellowship at the Miami Beach Classical Music Festival. He spent a month in the United States working with Mark Gibson (Director of Orchestral Studies, College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), University of Cincinnati) and Apo Hsu (Women's Philharmonic, CA; Tutor at NTNU, Taiwan) preparing an orchestral programme including works by Mozart, Saint-Säens, Schumann and Shawn Okpebholo. He was subsequently invited to conduct the Festival Orchestra in Verdi's Overture to La Forza del Destino and Jessie Montgomery's Starburst to which he received critical praise from the South Florida Classical Review.

"[Bendall] managed to coax some variety of dynamics in the resonant, domed sanctuary and the brass chorale theme emerged sonorously."
Lawrence Budmen, South Florida Classical Review

The achievement marks one of many successes for Bendall since his departure from the University of Aberdeen. He is presently Musical Director of Woking Choral Society, Brockham Choral, Holmbury St Mary Choral Society and Artistic Director of the Scottish pre-professional choir, the Reid Consort. He is on the Music Staff of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain and is a Visiting Singing Teacher at Cranleigh School. Recent professional highlights include concerts with the Academy of Ancient Music, the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra, Covent Garden Sinfonia, Southern Pro Musica; and masterclasses with the Hallé Choir, Rundfunkchor Berlin and Turkish State Choir. He continues his academic work at the University of Edinburgh where he is shortly to submit his doctoral thesis on the Estonian composer Veljo Tormis and changing perspectives of musical nationalism.

While at the University of Aberdeen, Bendall was a conductor of the University Sinfonia and Assistant Conductor of both the University Choral Society and Symphony Orchestra alongside a number of student and community groups. In his final year, he was the first recipient of both the Ogston-Carlaw Conducting Bursary and the James Lobban Conducting Scholarship, held in partnership with the Aberdeen Bach Choir.

Further information on Bendall's professional work can be found at www.colebendall.com.

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