In 2006, the College agreed to convene a group of people, distinguished in their respective fields, to act as its Advisory Council. These people have kindly agreed to support the National College of Music and to offer advice and counsel in a number of ways. As the college enters a new and exciting period in its long history, the help of such distinguished people is greatly valued.
Huw Edwards - Honorary Patron
Huw Edwards is known to millions as the BBC News lead presenter for major breaking news in the United Kingdom and around the world as he presents the BBC’s News at Ten, the corporation’s flagship news broadcast. He also presents the BBC’s coverage of state events, international events, the hour-long BBC News at Five on the BBC’s rolling news channel BBC News and occasionally presents either as relief or as the BBC’s chief presenter BBC News at Six, BBC News at One. BBC Weekend News and Daily Politics. He presented the BBC’s coverage of major national events, including the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
In 2003 Huw was made a Fellow of the University of Wales and in 2007 became Honorary Professor of Journalism at Cardiff University. He became Patron of the National College of Music in 2005 and in October 2008 he was appointed President of the London Welsh Trust which runs the London Welsh Centre. He is now the NCM’s Honorary Patron.
Huw graduated with First Class Honours in French from Cardiff University in 1983, where he is now the Honorary Professor of Journalism. He is a keen and practising musician who plays the piano and organ and off-screen he is known for combining his warmth and authority with a sparkling and ready wit!
Pam Wedgwood - Patron
Pam Wedgwood was appointed Patron of the NCM in 2020. Her musical career began with the recorder and piano, and Tenor Horn and Euphonium through the brass band tradition at her school. She then took up the ‘cello and French horn, entering Trinity College of Music in London to study piano, horn, ‘cello and composition at the age of sixteen.
After graduating she began a career as a professional French horn player, working with the Royal Ballet Touring Orchestra, The Royal Opera, the BBC Concert Orchestra and many West End shows. Marriage and a young family led her to take up an appointment as a peripatetic instrumental music teacher in Surrey in the late 1970s, and she began composing pieces for her pupils.
In 1988 her career as a composer began with the publication of Jazzin’ About, a series that now numbers over 30 books and has featured on many an examination syllabus. Since then her output has grown to over 200 books!
In the UK Pam has led many workshops for the European Piano Teachers’ Association and has inspired teachers in workshops as far afield as Singapore and Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand.
Jennie Younger has over 30 years of experience working in business with a stellar career in Finance, Capital Markets, Corporate Affairs, Government Relations and Corporate Responsibility. She has a proven leadership track record with particular strength in supporting strategic delivery through effective stakeholder engagement and change management.
Jennie is also currently Executive Director of King’s College London and King’s Health Partners and a member of the University’s Senior Management Team. She was previously Vice-President and Global Head of Corporate Affairs at AstraZeneca, with responsibility globally for all internal and external corporate affairs and communications, including government relations.
Prior to that, Jennie was a Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting where amongst advising other clients, she supported the implementation of a new global strategy at a leading international law firm. She was previously Deutsche Bank’s Global Head of Communications and Client Marketing for the Corporate and Investment Banking business. Jennie was also Head of Investor Relations at Glaxo Wellcome, before being appointed Global Head of Corporate Communications, Corporate Responsibility and Community Partnerships and a member of the Executive Team for GlaxoSmithKline.
Ralph Townsend is President of Keio Academy of New York and Chairman of The Cothill Trust.
He was first Senior Scholar at Keble College, Oxford, then a Junior Research Fellow, Tutor and Dean of Degrees at Lincoln College, where he was also the Anglican chaplain. He resigned from this post in 1985 when he decided to join the Roman Catholic Church.
After taking up a teaching post at Eton College in 1985 he left as Head of English in 1989 to become Headmaster of Sydney Grammar School. While in Sydney, he was Patron of the Australian Musicians’ Academy and President of the New South Wales Classical Association. After ten years Ralph returned to England to become Headmaster of Oundle School and in 2005 he was appointed Headmaster of Winchester College.
Ralph Townsend’s interests include music and walking and he has written books, articles and reviews about of church history, religious literature and education.
Raphael Rowe is an investigative reporter for the BBC. He was born and brought up in south-east London and his path to becoming a reporter has been unique and remarkable.
In 1988, aged 19, he was sentenced to life imprisonment for a murder and robbery he did not commit. In July 2000, after 12 years in prison, the Court of Appeal quashed his wrongful convictions and he was freed. After a year travelling the world, Raphael returned to the UK determined to become a reporter.
Raphael is self-educated on the criminal justice system and, against the odds, during his years in prison he studied journalism through a correspondence course.
As the subject of numerous stories by broadcast and print journalists during his long campaign for justice, Raphael has a unique insight into both sides of the reporting coin. Through his singular background Raphael has helped re-write the rules on what makes a reporter.
Raphael specialises in investigations, particularly human tragedies born from wrongs within the criminal justice system.
Patrick Russell was formerly a partner of Charles Russell LLP from 1982 until his retirement from the firm in 2013. He was Senior Partner from 2006 to 2013 and Managing Partner from 1993 to 1999. He is now the firm’s principal consultant lawyer and has a reputation as ‘a charming and courteous professional and regarded as a safe pair of hands that provide cutting edge advice.’
He is Chairman of Solicitors Indemnity Mutual Insurance Ltd and a trustee of the Association of Sail Training Organisations. In addition, he is the principal legal advisor to The Jockey Club and the BHA in the field of regulation, and discipline from 1989 until his appointment as the BHA’s independent Disciplinary Officer in 2009, a position which he still occupies.
Although Patrick is not a practising musician, he has a comprehensive knowledge and appreciation of music of all genres, gleaned largely from his vast collection of recorded music. His other interests are golf, sailing and motor sport. He has four children and lives in Northamptonshire.
Maxine Thévenot is Director of Music at the Cathedral of St John, Albuquerque and a member of the professorial staff of the University of New Mexico, in addition to being a world-class organ recitalist. Her recital career has taken her to many major European venues including the Magdeburger Dom in Germany; the Cathédrale de St. Bénigne, Dijon in France; the Church of Santa Rita, Turin in Italy; Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral, Salisbury, St. Paul’s and Canterbury Cathedrals, St. George’s Chapel, Windsor in the UK; la Cathèdrale de Notre Dame, Paris and to venues across North America including Washington National Cathedral, Saint Thomas Fifth Avenue, New York; Princeton University Chapel, Princeton, New Jersey; the Jack Singer Concert Hall, Calgary; and l’Oratoire de Saint Joseph, Montréal. She has also performed at the music festivals of Bratislava, Budapest, Prague, and Vienna and was the winner of the 2000 Canada Bach National Organ Competition.
In her position as Director of Cathedral Music and Organist at the Cathedral of St. John, Albuquerque, Maxine oversees a programme consisting of four choirs and an extensive community outreach ministry.
A native of Saskatchewan, Canada, Maxine received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from the University of Saskatchewan, and her Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from Manhattan School of Music. At Manhattan School she was twice-awarded the Bronson Ragan Award for “Most Outstanding Organist”. Maxine is an Associate of the Royal Canadian College of Organists and the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto, and was made an Honorary Fellow of the National College of Music, London, UK in 2006 for her “outstanding services to music.”
Gregg Redner is Director of Music and Arts at Metropolitan United Church, Ottawa.Prior to his current post Gregg held academic and church positions in New York City. He holds a PhD from Exeter University in England, a double Master of Music degree (Organ and Harpsichord) from the Juilliard School in New York City and is a Fellow of the Royal Canadian College of Organists (FRCCO) and the National College of Music (FNCM). Gregg also holds the Professional Diploma in Choral Conducting (Ch.RCCO – John Sidgwick Scholarship) from the RCCO. He is an Associate of The American Guild of Organists (AAGO) and holds the Choirmaster Certificate (ChM – S. Elmer and Choirmaster Prizes) from that same organization. In April 2013 Gregg was awarded an Honorary Fellowship for Services to Music by The National College of Music & Arts, London.
Gregg is an active member of The Royal Canadian College of Organists, serving as Director for Region V of the RCCO, a member of the National Examinations and Membership Committees, President of the London Centre and Chair of the 2014 RCCO National Convention Organizing Committee.
Tim Brumfield is a pianist, organist, composer and arranger and is currently Director of Music and Organist at St Gregory’s Episcopal Church, Boca Raton, Florida. He also tours as a soloist and featured musician and is often asked to lecture on the art of improvisation. A gifted composer and arranger, Tim hails from Richmond, Kentucky. His father, a self-taught pianist and fiddler, first introduced him to music at age three. At the age of just twelve, he landed his first position as a church musician at Red House Baptist Church where he mastered the art of hymn improvisation. Tim served as Cathedral Organist at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City from 2002-2009, and served as Associate Organist there from 1997. He has toured with the Cathedral Choristers, performing throughout the Northeast United States, Canada, and England. A member of the Grammy Award winning Paul Winter Consort since 1998, he has collaborated with such renowned artists as pianist Dave Brubeck, drummer Max Roach, legendary folk singer Judy Collins, the American Spiritual Ensemble and The New York City Gay Men’s Chorus. He has had the special honour of performing for His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and the renowned Monks of the Drepung Loseling Monastery. Tim recently received the distinguished award of Honorary Fellow of the National College of Music in London. Most recently his composition “A Place Called Old Kentucky” (part of his CD entitled “Kentucky Serenade”) was featured as part of the Alltech World Equestrian Games in Lexington, Kentucky.