The 'Grimsby Phil'

Based in Grimsby, N E Lincs, we are one of the area's leading choral societies, performing a variety of classical music under the baton of Chorus Master, Karen Beer, who joined us in August 2020. The choir has performed with other local choirs, Scunthorpe Choral Society, Grimsby Bach Choir, Market Rasen Choral Society, Gainsborough Choral Society and Louth Choral Society, taking part in Hull's City of Culture Year and Lincolnshire Remembers.  We have worked with guest conductors, such as David Lawrence, Andrew Padmore, Richard Howarth and Jeremy Jackman. We are affiliated to Making Music and in 2012 were chosen to take part in their Adopt A Composer Scheme. 

The choir has a committee made up of volunteers from the choir; the chair of the committee is Mags Bradley, Treasurer Pat Trafford and Secretary Avril Lord.

Grimsby Philharmonic Society, though not always under that name, has been part of the cultural life of the town since its formation in 1852. Since 1882, there have been seven chorus masters including our last chorus master, the internationally well-known choral trainer Susan Hollingworth, BEM. Under her inspirational leadership, the ‘Phil’ tackled exciting works by contemporary composers whilst not forgetting the favourite classics. Over the years, the Phil has treated Grimsby audiences to some of the most famous soloists of the day, such as Peter Pears, Kathleen Ferrier and Isobel Baillie, Thomas Allen and Elisabeth Schumann. The unusual circumstances of the war years allowed local audiences to savour performances by such distinguished artists as Moisevitch, Solomon and Myra Hess. One of the many highlights in the Phil’s history occurred during Alec Redshaw’s 33 year term as chorus master. A concert of an all-Britten programme not only featured Peter Pears but also included the composer amongst the audience. The performance later prompted him to remark that he believed it to be the first concert in the country devoted solely to his music.

Rehearsals take place every Monday at 7.30pm at Signhills Academy, Cleethorpes and the choir generally performs three concerts a year. We post regular updates on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.



Our Chorus Master - Karen Beer

We are delighted to announce we have a new Chorus Master, Karen Beer. Having worked in Bedfordshire for 21 years, teaching and running several adult and youth choirs, and playing oboe in orchestras, Karen moved to Lincolnshire in 2018 to be nearer her parents, not knowing to what extent she would be able to get involved in the local music scene. She was thrilled, therefore, when we asked her to audition for Grimsby Philharmonic, and even more excited to be offered the post of Chorus Master. Although we haven't all met her properly yet, she has conducted our online Zoom rehearsals which started in August. She said "I have been made to feel very welcome and look forward to meeting these wonderful singers face to face in the near future". Karen will bring her experience and expertise to the choir with an aim to recruit younger members to swell the numbers to ensure that the choir remains a vibrant part of the musical world in the area for years to come.

Karen has recently qualified as a Vocal Health First Aider! This gives her the practical skills to spot the signs of a range of vocal dysfunction and imbalance and the knowledge to help someone towards recovery.

Our Accompanist - David Beer

The Phil are pleased to welcome David Beer as our new accompanist. David trained as a pianist and conductor at Hull University, and taught at schools in Hull before becoming a full-time professional Musical Director, pianist and accompanist. His long list of achievements include being musical director or playing piano/keyboard on many West End and international touring shows such as Fame, Guys and Dolls, We Will Rock You, Me and My Girl. He worked for some time with Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber’s company as Musical Director on Aspects of Love, Cats and Jesus Christ Superstar and was Sarah Brightman’s personal accompanist, recording an album with her. He regularly accompanies and coaches singers and instrumentalists for grade examinations. He is an examiner for the London College of Music specialising in singing and piano examinations and was recently awarded an FLCM for Professional Achievement. He is also busy as an adjudicator in music festivals all over the UK and is a mentor for Music For Youth national music festivals. Since his retirement from full-time performing, David has returned to his first love, choral music, and has been working as a choral conductor and accompanist in Bedfordshire. He is very happy to now be living and working in Lincolnshire

David Beer

David Beer