Born in Bury, Lancashire in 1987, Michael showed a keen interest in Music from an early age and took up learning a Brass instrument at the age of eight. Initially starting on the Tenor Horn, he later switched to the Cornet, Trumpet and Flugelhorn which he still plays to this day. Michael’s musical studies began at Bury Music Centre under the tutelage of former Besses o’th Barn principle Cornet Brian Mather. It was here that Michael first began playing in bands, joining a number of the centre’s training ensembles. By the age of 14 he had progressed sufficiently to join the Bury Youth Concert Band, Bury Youth Brass Band and the Bury Youth Big Band, with whom he performed at a number of high profile venues including the Bridgewater Hall and the Royal Northern College of Music. He became Principle Trumpet of Bury Youth Concert Band in 2005.
Michael has had a long association with Tottington Band, having first joined in 1999 at the age of 11. He gradually worked his way through the ranks of the Cornet section, eventually reaching Solo Cornet by the age of 16 and travelling with the band on two music tours to Nimes, France and Schorndorf, Germany. It was his participation in these bands that really fired his interest in music, which he went on to study at GCSE and A Level.
Michael’s interest in Musical Direction began during his studies at Holy Cross College in 2006 when he was invited to arrange and direct the music for the college production of Romeo and Juliet. It was this achievement that earned him a prestigious unconditional offer to read Music at Lancaster University, where he would later go on to study conducting and musical direction under Dr Edward Venn. Here he also studied a great many other aspects of the subject including: performance, composition, musical history and theory, but he finally specialised in Jazz and Music for Film. Michael was one of the founding members of the Lancaster University Brass Band, whom he later conducted for two years, as well as an advisor to the organising committee behind the creation of the University Brass Band Championships of Great Britain. He also conducted the award winning Lancaster University Big Band, again for two years. Michael graduated with a second class division one Bachelor’s Degree with Honours in Music in 2009.
After completing his Undergraduate Degree, Michael continued his musical studies to Masters level, graduating for a second time in 2010 with a Masters in Music Education Research, which he passed with Merit. He then went on to study for a Post Graduate Certificate in Education at the University of Cumbria, graduating for a third and final time in 2011 with qualified teacher status. Michael currently teaches Music at Lord’s Independent School in Bolton, as well as offering private Trumpet and Cornet tuition.
Michael still actively performs with orchestras on semi-professional show circuits in Bury, Bolton and Lancaster.
His musical credits include: Oliver (2002, 2007, 2009), The King and I (2004), My Fair Lady (2005), West Side Story (2008), Jesus Christ Superstar (2008), Bugsy Malone (2009, 2011), Les Miserables (2009), Sweet Charity (2009), Fiddler on the Roof (2010), The Pajama Game (2010), The Wizard of Oz (2010, 2012) and The Sound of Music (2012).
Michael was delighted to be offered the position of Musical Director for Tottington, and thinks that ‘there is something rather special about conducting the band that you grew up in’. Michael has held the position since October 2011.