Response to Charlotte C. Gill article on music and notation – full list of signatories

[Addendum: See my follow-up article to this, ‘The insidious class divide in music teaching’, The Conversation, 17 May 2017]

 

An article in The Guardian by Charlotte C. Gill (‘Music education is now only for the white and wealthy’, Monday 27 March 2017), has generated a good deal of attention amongst a wide range of international musicians, music educators, academics, and others. Below is the letter compiled for publication in The Guardian in response to Gill’s article, and a full list of over 700 signatories to date. The letter was compiled by Joan Arnau Pàmies, Kevin Korsyn, Franklin Cox, Barbara Eichner and myself, while Jim Aitchison, Marc Yeats, Camden Reeves and others have been extremely helpfully with its dissemination. It is published on the Guardian website here, and appeared in the print edition for Thursday 6 April 2017 (‘Risky romanticisation of musical illiteracy’, p. 32). Some replies are printed here.

Also recommended are the response to Gill’s article by Michelle James, and an earlier article on musical literacy by Peter Tregear. See also this excellent responses by Pamela Rose , this by Helen Sanderson,  this by George Bevan, this by George A. Smith, this by Christian Morris, and this by Frances Wilson. Also the coverage on Slipped Disc, in Limelight magazine, and on Arts Professionaland an article from the Latin Mass Society (of which James MacMillan, a signatory below, is a patron), focusing in particular on Gill’s comparison of reading music to learning Latin. Another recent blog article considers the article in the context of changing expectations in UK secondary education, while composer and teacher Des Oliver has made an important podcast with Tigran Arakelyan about the article, and I have also made an extended podcast with Arakelyan, considering the article and wider issues of musical education, notation, literacy, privilege, and more.

For an utterly contrasting view to that of Gill, strongly advocating reading (and sight reading), composition, and musical history, being available to all schoolchildren by right, see this 1945 pamphlet by the Workers’ Music Association (hardly the voice of the wealthy), especially pages 5-6. Speaking personally, I think many of the recommendations in this pamphlet are as relevant now as they were 72 years ago. I have also blogged an inspiring defence of the teaching of Western classical music and literacy by Estelle R. Jorgensen, which I believe to be highly relevant to this debate.

I will happily add other names to the list: if you wish to be added, please post underneath with your name and how you would like to be described.

[Earlier addendum material on related subjects is included at the bottom of this post – this and the above constitute my own thoughts, not those of the signatories]

 

Charlotte C. Gill (‘Music education is now only for the white and wealthy’) argues that ‘to enable more children to learn [music], we must stop teaching in such an academic way.’ While rightly noting the increasing chasm between state and private education in terms of music provision, her conclusions about musical notation and theoretical skills amount to simple anti-intellectualism.

Gill dismisses the study of music ‘theory’ and argues patronisingly that musical notation is ‘a cryptic, tricky language (…) that can only be read by a small number of people’. This claim flies in the face of countless initiatives over two centuries making musical literacy available to those of many backgrounds. As with written language, musical notation enables effective and accurate communication, as well as critical access to huge amounts of knowledge. In many musical fields, those without it will be at a deep disadvantage and dependent upon others.

Gill’s comments about ‘limited repertoires of old, mostly classical music’ are unfounded and presented without evidence: composing, listening, singing, and playing are embedded in much musical education, which also widely encompasses jazz, popular, and non-Western traditions. Claiming that classical music comprises a limited repertory is inaccurate: composers have been adding to its repertory for centuries and continue to do so. We agree with Gill that aural and other skills are equally important as those in notation. However, through her romanticisation of illiteracy, Gill’s position could serve to make literate musical education even more exclusive through being marginalised in state schools yet further.

Alex Abercrombie, pianist and mathematician
Louise Ableman, freelance pianist and piano teacher
Richard Abram, editor
Juliet Abrahamson, erstwhile music teacher, and festival director
Peter Adriaansz, Composer, composition teacher, Royal Conservatory, The Hague
Jean-Louis Agobet, composer, professor of composition at Bordeaux Conservatory (France)
James Aikman, Composer in Residence, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra
Jim Aitchison, composer and graphic score artist
Helen Alexander, freelance musician
Helen Alipaz, Piano teacher and former music tutor at Ruskin Mill College, Nailsworth
Timothy Allan, singer, academic
Ralph Allwood, music teacher
Claire Alsop, Musician
Dr Pedro Alvarez, composer, Adjunct Lecturer, Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts
Peter Amsel, author and composer (of notated music); former Musical Director of the Espace Musique Concert Society. Ottawa, Canada
Paul Andrews, Anglican priest with PhD in music, former music librarian and choral conductor
Samuel Andreyev, composer and teacher
Leonie Anderson, viola player and teacher
Tigran Arakelyan, youth orchestra conductor, Off the Podium podcast
Genevieve Arkle, PhD candidate in Music, University of Surrey
Newton Armstrong, Senior Lecturer in Composition, City, University of London
Christophe Astier, Clarinetist, Ensemble Orchestral de Toulouse, France
Jessica Aszodi, vocalist, doctoral candidate, Queensland Conservatorium of Music
Man Bun Au, Classical guitarist, Adjunct Lecturer, Hong Kong Baptist University
John Aulich, composer, freelance tutor in composition and theory, and recording artist.
Patrick Ayrton, conductor and harpsichordist, Professor at the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague
Emily Baines: State school educated performer, lecturer, musical director and DMus candidate (Guildhall School of Music & Drama)
Brendan Ball, trumpeter and educator
Joshua Ballance, Music student
Simon Ballard, Concert Pianist and Composer
Nicholas Bannan, Associate Professor of Music, University of Western Australia
Richard Bannan, singer, conductor and Head of Singing, King’s College School, Wimbledon
Stephen Barber, Retired music teacher
Alejandro Barceló, musicologist and music theorist
Daniel Barkley, composer and PhD candidate at Queen’s University, Belfast
Matthew Barley, cellist
Keith Barnard, composer
Lester Barnes, composer, producer, and former music teacher
Kristina Baron-Woods, Lecturer in Music Theatre, University of Western Ontario
Richard Barrett, composer, Institute of Sonology, The Hague
Bernardo Barros, composer, improviser, Ph.D. Candidate/Teaching Assistant at New York University
Pam Barrowman, clarinettist, singer, teacher
Stephen Barton, composer (Titanfall 1 & 2, Call of Duty)
Nicholas Bartulovic, freelance composer, student of Politics, Philosophy, and History, Ashland University
Jane Becktel B.Mus.(Hons) Dip. Ed., Choir director
Pierre-Michel Bédard, Organist, composer, teacher at Limoges Conservatory
Adam Bell, composer, doctoral student, Brunel University
Prof David J. Benson FRSE, author of Music: A Mathematical Offering (CUP 2006)
Margaret Bent CBE, FBA, Emeritus Fellow, All Souls College
Niels Berentsen, PhD (Royal Conservatoire of The Hague)
Peter van Bergen, director LOOS Foundation/Studio LOOS, The Hague
Rebecca Berkley, Lecturer in Music Education, University of Reading
Mark Berry, Senior Lecturer in Music, Royal Holloway, University of London
Dr Steven Berryman, Director of Music City of London School for Girls
Noel Bertram, Retired Head of Cumbria County Music Service
Dr Christopher Best, freelance composer, fiction writer and university lecturer
George Bevan, Director of Music, Monkton School
Dr. C.M. Biggs, performer; Director of Piano Studies, Cambrian College
Sue Bint, Music teacher, violinist
Sylvia Bisset, private piano teacher
James Black, MSt. in Musicology, University of Oxford
Deborah Blackmore BSc ACA scientist, chartered accountant and trustee of a children’s music education charity
Kate Blackstone, freelance musician, PhD researcher, University of Leeds
Darren Bloom, composer, Lead Tutor for Composition and Musicianship, Junior Trinity
Yvonne Bloor, Master of music, teacher and composer
Andrew Bottrill, pianist
Mark Bowden, freelance composer; Reader in Composition, Royal Holloway, University of London
Geraint Bowen, director of music at Hereford Cathedral
Andrew Bowie, jazz musician, Professor of Philosophy and German, Royal Holloway, University of London
Laura Bowler, composer, vocalist, Lecturer in Composition at Royal Northern College of Music and Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Karen Boyce, pianist/accompanist and music teacher. New Zealand
Martyn Brabbins, ENO Music Director, RCM Visiting Professor, Huddersfield Choral Society music director
Susan Bradley, freelance tuba, ophicleide, serpent, cimbasso player
David Braid, composer
Heather Bradshaw, violinist in the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Andrew Brewerton, Principal, Plymouth College of Art
Lewis Brito-Babapulle MA, MSt, FRCO. Head of Academic Music, Trinity School, Croydon
Per Broman, Professor of Music, Bowling Green State University
Anne Brown, primary school music teacher
Harvey Brown, secondary music teacher and musician
Janice Brown, piano teacher
Mariko Brown, teacher, pianist, and composer
Martha Watson Brown Oboist, Composer and teacher of Music Theory
Thomas Brown, composer
Robin Browning, conductor; Conducting Instructor, University of Southampton
Kevin Brunkhorst, Chair, Music Department, St Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada
John Bryan, performer and Professor of Music, University of Huddersfield
Jason Thorpe Buchanan, composer, PhD Candidate, Eastman School of Music; Artistic Director, the [Switch~ Ensemble]
Lisete Da Silva Bull, professional musician, teacher, educator
James Bunch, Lecturer in composition-theory, KM College of Music and Technology, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Sarah Burn, freelance music editor and typesetter; completing a PhD involving notation and critical editing
Steven Burnard Violist BBC Philharmonic , learnt to read music at state school aged 7
Martin Butler, composer, pianist, Professor, University of Sussex
Peter Byrom-Smith, composer
Thomas Caddick, Director of the Tobias Matthay Pianoforte School
Dr Edward Caine, Composer, pianist and researcher for Ex Cathedra
Sara Caine, singer & oboist, GP
Jacqui Cameron, Education Director, Opera North
William Cameron, musician
Rachel Campbell, Sydney Conservatorium of Music
Jay Capperauld, composer, saxophonist
Christian Carey, composer and Associate Professor of Music, Westminster Choir College
Gerry Carleston, B Mus, retired violinist and teacher
Stephen Carleston, organist & choir-trainer, music examiner and arranger
Tim Carleston, lay clerk, St George’s chapel, Windsor Castle
Gary Carpenter FRNCM, HonRAM, FRSA. Composer, composition professor Royal Academy of Music and Royal Northern College of Music, BASCA Director
Dr Paul Carr, composer
Philip Cashian, Head of Composition, Royal Academy of Music
Alan Cassar, composer and arranger
Peter Castine, composer, managing editor Computer Music Journal
Sam Cave, BA(Hons) PGdip (RCM), guitarist and composer, tutor in guitar at Brunel University
Roland Chadwick, Composer, Guitarist, Teacher
Oliver Chandler, Visiting Tutor in Historical Musicology, Royal Holloway, University of London
Alexandros Charkiolakis, musicologist, MIAM – Istanbul Technical University
James Chater, musicologist and composer
Eugenia Cheng, mathematician, educator and pianist
Anthony Cheung, composer, pianist, teacher (University of Chicago), co-artistic director of the Talea Ensemble
Pablo Santiago Chin, Adjunct Instructor, Music Theory and Composition, Saint Xavier University
Unsuk Chin, composer
Ray Chinn, violin teacher
Peter Cigleris, clarinetist, BMus (Hons), PGDip, Royal College of Music
Artur Cimirro, composer and pianist from Brazil
Keith W Clancy, artist/composer/computer musician, Melbourne, Australia
Colin Stuart Clarke, Classical music journalist
Raymond Clarke, pianist
Nicholas Clapton, singer and singing teacher
James Clarke, composer, Researcher, University of Leeds
Julian Clayton, conductor
Robert Coates FRCO(CHM), ARCM. Composer, organist and teacher, Harøy, Norway
Jacques Cohen, Conductor & Composer
Jonathan Cohen, former presenter, Music Time for BBC TV School’s programmes
Chris Collins, Head of Music, Bangor University
Rob Collis, singer and composer
Sarah Connolly, opera singer and teacher
Saskia Constantinou, Media Consultant and arts festival director
Dr. David Conway, music historian, Honorary Research Fellow, University College London
James Cook, University Teacher in Music, University of Sheffield
Rachel Cook BA MA, Pianist, orchestral musician and educator
Imogen Cooper, pianist
Brian Cope, composer, music educator and PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh
Roger Coull, violinist leader of the Coull Quartet, and conductor
Tom Coult. Composer, Visiting Fellow in Creative Arts, Trinity College Cambridge
Emma Coulthard, flautist, author and head of Cardiff County and the Vale of Glamorgan Music Sevuce
Franklin Cox, Associate Professor of Theory, Cello, and Composition, Wright State University
Mairi Coyle. Participation & Outreach Manager, National Children’s Orchestras of GB
Stephen Coyle, composer and PhD candidate at Queen’s University, Belfast
Ruth Crouch, Assistant Leader at Scottish Chamber Orchestra & violin teacher at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland & St. Mary’s Music School
Francis Cummings, violinist and Director of Music at Sistema Scotland, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Simon Cummings, composer, writer, researcher, PhD candidate, Birmingham Conservatoire
Fiona Cunningham, CEO, Sistema England
Harriet Cunningham, music critic, writer and doctoral student at UTS, Australia
David Curran, freelance music educator, PhD Candidate, Royal Holloway, University of London
Caroline Curwen, PhD student Psychology of Music, Sheffield University
Dr. Mat Dalgleish, Senior Lecturer in Music Technology and Course Leader for MSc Audio Technology, University of Wolverhampton
Giovanni D’Aquila, composer, composition teacher
John Daszak, opera/concert singer
Steven Daverson, composer, Lecturer in Composition and Sonic Arts, Brunel University London
Colin Davey, Education Programmes Manager, Royal School of Church Music, teacher and conductor
Julian Davis, amateur pianist, Professor of Medicine, University of Manchester
Gavin Davies, freelance violinist
Edward Davies, Head of Music, St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School, Bristol
Jill Davies MusB, classical music artist manager and concert promoter, passionate amateur musician
Tansy Davies, composer
Rebecca Dawson, General Manager, Music at Oxford
Rebecca Day, Visiting Lecturer, Royal Holloway, University of London; Tutor in Music Theory and Analysis, University of Oxford
Caroline D’Cruz, B.Mus, ARCM, LRAM pianist and choral conductor
Nathan James Dearden, Performance Manager and Visiting Tutor in Music Composition, Royal Holloway University of London
Cornelis de Bondt. Composer, teacher Royal Conservatoire, Den Haag, NL
Lonnie Decker, Musician and Educator
João Pedro Delgado, viola, PhD researcher, Universidade de Évora, ESART-IPCB
Caroline Delume, Guitarist, teacher
Simon Desbruslais, trumpet soloist and Director of Performance, University of Hull
Dr. Luis Dias, founder and project director of Child’s Play India Foundation (www.childsplayindia.org), a music charity working to bring music education to India’s disadvantaged children
Josephine Dickinson, former music teacher, composer, and poet
Joan Dillon, Director of The Academy of Sacred Music/Voice Teacher
Alison Dite, pianist and teacher from Cardiff
Sarah Dodds, piano teacher, Associate Lecturer in music, The Open University
Emily Doolittle, composer, Athenaeum Research Fellow, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Sean Dowgray, percussionist, D.M.A: UC San Diego
John Duggan, composer, singer, teacher
Andrew Eales, pianist, writer and teacher
Leslie East, Chair, The Association of British Choral Directors; former CEO, ABRSM
Christiana Eastwood, Head of Music at The Granville School, Sevenoaks
Professor Sir David Eastwood, Vice Chancellor, University of Birmingham
Jason Eckardt, Professor, City University of New York
Dr Paul Max Edlin, composer, Director of Music Queen Mary University of London, Artistic Director Deal Festival of Music and the Arts
Katheryne Perri Edwards, music educator for 37 years
Malcolm V. Edwards, Professor Emeritus of Music, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Barbara Eichner, Senior Lecturer in Music, Oxford Brookes University
Aaron Einbond, composer, Lecturer in Music, City, University of London
Dr Graham Elliott; Executive Director American Youth Philharmonic Orchestras; Washington DC, USA
Lynne Ellis, Chief Executive Officer, Berkshire Maestros and lead of the Berkshire Music Hub
Daniel Elphick, Teaching Fellow, Royal Holloway, University of London
Mark Elvin, Bass Guitarist, Double Bassist, Tubist, Composer/Arranger/Transcriber, Educator, Conductor
Nick Ereaut, jazz musician, singer-songwriter, music teacher
Nancy Evans, Director of Learning and Participation, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group
Tecwyn Evans, conductor
Nick Evans-Pughe, Performer and school instrumental teacher’ (PGDip in instrumental teaching in which l researched the learning by children of (western classical) notation.)
Mark Everist, Professor of Music, President of the Royal Musical Association (signing in a personal capacity)
Judith Exley. Flute teacher and composer. Wellington, New Zealand
Pauline Fairclough, University of Bristol
Daniel Fardon, PhD student in Composition and Teaching Associate at University of Birmingham
Miguel Farías. Composer, PHD(c) in Latin American Studies, associated Professor universidad academia de humanismo Cristiano , Chile
Tony Faulkner, Independent classical recording producer and engineer
Greta Fenney, therapist
Adam Fergler, composer, arranger, and conductor
Laetitia Federici, freelance pianist and peripatetic piano teacher
Anneke Feenstra, mother of a musician
Cal Fell BA Hons LRAM Freelance musician State Educated
Professor Brian Ferneyhough, Stanford University
Coia Ibàñez Ferrater, Director of Xilofon Elementary School of Music
Jeremy Filsell, Professor of Organ, Peabody Conservatory, Baltimore USA
Janet Fischer, Soprano, Teacher, Managing Director Fulham Opera
Jonathan Fischer, TV Composer, Songwriter
Chris Fisher-Lochhead, composer and violist
Dr Kevin Flanagan, Senior Lecturer in Music, Anglia Ruskin University
Dr Alexandra Fol, composer; conductor and organist at Missione Maria Ausiliatrice, Montréal, Canada
Miriam Forbes, Director of Music, Witham Hall School
Peter Foster. Music Teacher
Christopher Fox, composer, Professor of Music, Brunel University, editor of TEMPO
Cheryl Frances-Hoad, composer
Luke Fraser MMus, composer and Piano Teacher for Arts First
Brigid Frazer, Kodaly based Early Years Music Specialist
Judith Fromyhr, Senior Lecturer in Music, Australian Catholic University
Tor Frømyhr, Coordinator of Strings Australian National University
Hugh Fullarton, Organist and Master of the Choristers at Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral, Wangaratta
Alvaro Gallegos, music scholar, journalist and record producer
Sir James and Lady Jeanne Galway, flautists
Tom Gamble, MMus Guitarist
Brian Garbet, composer, PhD candidate, University of Calgary, Canada
Ash Gardner, DJ, multi-instrumentalist, music educator, New York, NY
James Gardner, composer, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
Eloise Garland, Musician, Teacher, and Deaf Awareness Campaigner
Tim Garrard, Director of Music, Westminster School
Mark Gasser, pianist
Ben Gaunt, Senior Lecturer Leeds College of Music, Tutor Open College of the Arts
Andrew Georg, repetiteur, State Opera of South Australia, organist
Patricia Giannattasio, Professor of Music, Bergen College in New Jersey; PhD candidate at The Graduate Center
Sean K. Gilde, ‘cellist with Astaria String Quartet, Head of Strings Dragon School Oxford
Don Gillthorpe, Director of Music and Performing Arts, Ripley St. Thomas CE Academy
Hannah Gill, pianist, organist, choral conductor and music teacher
Karen Giudici (Turner) ex professional freelance clarinettist, current primary and secondary music teacher
Rob Godman, Composer, Reader in Music at the University of Hertfordshire
Nigel Goldberg, Artistic Director, Youth Music Centre
Miles Golding BMus, LTCL, LRSM, free-lance violinist, teacher of violin, viola, music theory
Richard Gonski, Conductor Torbay Symphony Orchestra
Howard Goodall CBE, Composer, Broadcaster, Music Historian
Liz Goodwin, teacher, founder/director Flutewise
Sumanth Gopinath, Associate Professor of Music Theory, University of Minnesota–Twin Cities
Adam Gorb, Head of School of Composition, Royal Northern College of Music
Stephen Goss, Professor, University of Surrey
Mark Gotham, Affiliated Lecturer, University of Cambridge
Dr. Barbara Graham, Retired Professor, Ball State University and amateur violist
Dr Michael Graham, postgraduate researcher, Royal Holloway; tutor, Rhondda Cynon Taff music service
Penny Grant, Singing Teacher and Soprano
Simon Gravett dip.TCL, Head of Music the Elmgreen School
Coady Green, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.
Robert Green, pianist, accompanist, jazz musician
Gavin Greenaway, composer, conductor, pianist
Helen Grime, composer, Senior Lecturer of composition at Royal Holloway University of London
Nicole Grimes, Assistant Professor of Musicology, University of California, Irvine
Jennifer Guppy, British national, resident in France. Class music teacher, at a Primary school and private piano and flute teacher
Christine Gwynn, conductor, pianist, coach, music workshop leader
Kerry L Hagan, Composer, Lecturer, University of Limerick
Stefan Hagen, Dilettant
Iain Hallam, singer and musical director of a cappella choruses
Marc-André Hamelin, pianist
Benedict Hames, viola player, Symphonie Orchester des bayerischen Rundfunk
Ross Hamilton, Peripatetic Percussion Teacher, Cornwall Music Service Trust
Helen Hampton, Director, Popchoir
Radka Hanakova, pianist
J. P. E. Harper-Scott, Professor of Music History and Theory, Royal Holloway University of London
Patrick Harrex, composer and Musical Director of Brighton & Hove Arts Orchestra
Dr. John Mark Harris, music educator and pianist
Sadie Harrison, secondary school peripatetic teacher of piano and music theory; composer and lecturer
Tom Harrold, composer, Honorary Associate Artist of the Royal Northern College of Music
Edward-Rhys Harry, conductor, composer
Béla Hartmann, pianist
Andrea Hartenfeller, organist, singer, teacher, Hesse/Germany
Per Hartmann, music publisher, Edition HH Ltd
David Harvey, D.Phil music, composer, guitarist, technologist, ex-CTO Sibelius, Tido
Waka Hasegawa, pianist, piano duettist and piano teacher
Katie Hassell, Senior Spacecraft Engineer, pianist and cellist
Arngeir Hauksson, Guitarist, Lutenist and music teacher
Jeremy Hawker B.mus, M.Teach, L.mus, professional guitarist and instrumental tutor at Townsville Grammar School
Steve Hawker, Inclusion Manager, Cornwall Music Service Trust
Sam Hayden, composer and academic, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
Morgan Hayes, Professor of Composition, Royal Academy of Music
Benjamin Hebbert, Director, Benjamin Hebbert Violins Limited
Piers Hellawell, composer and Professor of Composition, Queen’s University of Belfast, Northern Ireland
Andrew Henderson, singer, keyboard player, secondary school Director of Music, primary school governor, committee member, MMA – Music Teaching Professionals
Áine Heneghan, Assistant Professor of Music Theory, University of Michigan
James Heron, violinist and violist
Ken Hesketh, composer, Lecturer, Royal College of Music
Helen Heslop, piano student, concert promoter
Anne-Marie Hetherington, Music Director and Head of Creative Arts in a successful secondary school, singing teacher, conductor
Gavin Higgins, composer
Rolf Hind, pianist, composer and teacher (Guildhall School of Music and Trinity Laban)
Maggie Hinder, GRSM ARCM ARCO, freelance music teacher and chorister
Alistair Hinton, composer, curator, The Sorabji Archive
James Hockey, musician, teacher, conductor
Jason Hodgson BMus (composer, disabled, and now studying MMus)
Ros Hoffler ABRSM examiner
Alison Holford, cellist and lover of sight-reading
Klaas ten Holt, composer, writer, composition teacher at Prins Claus Conservatorium, Groningen, the Netherlands
Michael Hooper, Lecturer in Music, University of New South Wales, Australia
Julian Horton, Professor of Music, Durham University
Tim Horton, pianist
Janet Hoskyns, Professor Emerita, Birmingham City University
Stephen Hough, pianist
Yvonne Howard, Opera/ Concert Singer & Professor of Singing
Dr Jocelyn Howell
George Huber, singer and mathematician
Dr David Russell Hulme, Director of Music and Reader, Aberystwyth University, musicologist and conductor
Alexander Hunter, composer and performer, Australian National University
Derek Hurst, Associate Professor of Composition, Berklee College of Music and Boston Conservatory
David Hutchings, conductor
Anne Margaret Hyland, Lecturer in Music Analysis and Admissions tutor at the University of Manchester
Miika Hyytiäinen, composer, doctoral student, University of the Arts Helsinki
Michael Ibsen, Classical Guitarist Mmus, British Columbia Conservatory of Music
Grahame Gordon Innes, composer
Professor John Irving, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, London
Steven Isserlis, cellist
Dr Jenny Jackson, composer & private piano teacher
Stephen Jackson, conductor, choral director, composer and arranger
Julian Jacobson, musician
Alison James, Head of Music, Kelvin Hall School, professional musician, performance moderator
Lara James, tutor of saxophone, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Senior Associate teacher, Bristol University
Willem Jansen, performer and teacher, The Netherlands
Joel Jarventausta, composer and conductor, masters student at the Royal College of Music
Kate Johnson, Promotion & Communications Director, Music Sales Limited
Stephen Johnson, writer, broadcaster & composer
Fergus Johnston, Composer
Allan Herbie Jones, composer, musician, teacher.
David Jones, Head of Accompaniment, Royal Northern College of Music; Deputy Head, Junior RNCM
Gordon Jones, singer, former member of The Hilliard Ensemble
Jeremy Peyton Jones, composer, Reader in music, Goldsmiths University of London
Julia Jones Teacher of Music, City of London School
Georgina Jordan, pianist and teacher
Susanna Jordan, tutti 1st violin, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Frauke Jurgensen, musician, Lecturer, University of Aberdeen
Jari Kallio, music journalist
Matthew Kaner, Professor of Composition Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Rob Keeley, composer and pianist, King’s College
Susan Keeling, music graduate, arts administrator, amateur musician, parent
N W Kenyon, retired teacher
Dorothy Ker, Composer, Senior Lecturer, University of Sheffield
Dr Steve Kershaw, jazz musician, Oxford University Department for Continuing Education
Isla Keys MA (Hons) ATCL PGCE, music teacher, singing & piano teacher, committee member MMA-Music Teaching Professionals
Christopher Kimbell, Visiting Tutor in Historical Musicology, Royal Holloway, University of London; peripatetic teacher in music theory
Owen Kilfeather, composer and writer
Andrew King, Professor of English Literature – and avid reader of music
George King, Head and Senior Lecturer (retired), Department of Art History, Visual Arts and Musicology, University of South Africa
Helen Kingstone, Postdoctoral Researcher in History, Leeds Trinity University (and pianist and choral singer)
Professor Andrew Kirkman, Peyton and Barber Professor of Music, University of Birmingham
Patricia Kleinman, Musicóloga
Grahame Klippel, Guitarist, Kingston University
Ruth Knell,  violinist, English National Ballet. Learnt to read music initially at the age of 6/7 in recorder lessons at an infant school on a council estate in the 60s
Annabel Knight, head of recorder, Birmingham Conservatoire
Kathryn Knight, CEO Tido Music and a director/founder of Sing Up
Matthew Lee Knowles, composer + piano teacher
Allan Kolsky, Orchestra Musician, Syracuse, NY
Kevin Korsyn, Professor of Music Theory, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Toni J. Krein, President of the Association of Swiss Professional Orchestras
Uday Krishnakumar, Composer
Prof. Dennis Kuhn, Head of the percussion and timpani dept, University of Music and Performing Arts Mannheim, Germany
Henny Kupferstein, piano teacher
Yannis Kyriakides, Composer, teacher Royal Conservatory, The Hague
Dr David Lancaster, Director of Music at York St John University
Vanessa Lann, composer, teacher
Jerry Lanning, conductor and arranger
Thomas Larcher, musician
David Lawrence, conductor
Andrew C Leach, organist, choirman in four cathedral occasional choirs
Elizabeth Eva Leach, Professor of Music, University of Oxford
Yekaterina Lebedeva, concert pianist, professor of piano Trinity Laban Conservatoire, visiting lecturer City, University of London
Norman Lebrecht, writer and broadcaster
Kelvin Lee, PhD Candidate in Musicology at Durham University, Conductor
Christian Leitmeir, Magdalen College, University of Oxford
Erik Levi, Visiting Professor in Music, Royal Holloway University of London
Sally Lewis, pianist and teacher
Rebecca Leyton-Smith, Cellist and Cello Teacher at Uppingham School
Mu-Xuan Lin, Composer, and Lecturer at California State University Long Beach
PerMagnus Lindborg, composer, Assistant Professor, School of Art, Design, and Media, Singapore
Dr Alexander Lingas, Reader in Music, City, University of London; Fellow, European Humanities Research Centre, University of Oxford; Music Director, Cappella Romana
Tomasz Lis, concert pianist, teacher
Maureen Lister, Euphonium player
Rodney Lister, faculty department of composition and theory, Boston University School of Music, faculty The New England Conservatory Preparatory School
Lore Lixenberg, Experimental voice artist, Mezzo, Composer
Daniel Lloyd, Musician and author of No Notes piano music (tablature) designed to help beginners make a start with learning how to read and to play piano music.
Rick Longden, Lecturer in Music, Musician etc
Dave Longman, drummer, percussionist, teacher and author of “Skins Drum Performance Method”
Nick Loveland, COO, Birmingham Town Hall and Symphony Hall
Sonia Lovett, television director of opera and classical music concerts
Shay Loya, Lecturer in Music, City, University of London
Neil Luck, composer, performer, music educator
Karl Lutchmayer, Senior Lecturer, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
Frances M Lynch, singer, director, composer, teacher
Graham Lynch, composer
Tracey Mair, freelance piano and vocal tutor
Joshua Banks Mailman, Instructor of Music Theory, University of Alabama
Charles MacDougall, founding member of VOCES8, currently Choral Specialist for The Voices Foundation
Nigel McBride, Composer, BMus (Hons), MSt. in Composition (Oxon.), DPhil in Music (Oxon.)
Rachel McCarthy, doctoral candidate and visiting tutor, Royal Holloway, University of London
Paul McCreesh, conductor, founder and artistic director, Gabrieli
Maggie McCoy, Choral Arts administrator and choral musician
Elizabeth Macdonald, violist and arts administratorGeraldine McElearney, GSM,singing and piano teacher
Simon McEnery, singer, musical director (Salisbury Chamber Chorus), Associate Lecturer at the University of Chichester
Neil McGowan, Production Staff, Stanislavsky-Muzykalny Opera/Ballet Theatre, Moscow
Andrew McGregor, Broadcaster, BBC Radio 3
Jennifer Mackerras, recorder player; Alexander Technique tutor at Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama
John McLeod, composer
Sir James MacMillan, composer, conductor
Peter McMullin, Printed Music Specialist, Blackwell’s Music Shop
Stuart McRae, Composer, Lecturer, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Jason Matthew Malli, composer, sound designer, performer, producer, educator, arts advocate
Martin Malmgren, pianist
Kevin Malone, Reader in Composition, University of Manchester
Julien Malaussena Composer
Jane Manning, singer
Marshall Marcus, CEO European Union Youth Orchestra, President Sistema Europe
Daniel Margolin QC, lawyer, amateur musician and parent
Kypros Markou, Professor of Music, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI (graduate from Royal College of Music, London and New England Conservatory, Boston)
Katherine Marriott, mezzo-soprano
Daniela Mars, Flutist
Les Marsden, Founding Music Director/Conductor: The Mariposa (CA) Symphony Orchestra, Composer, Lecturer, University of California and Instrumental Musician
Andy Marshall, Senior Lay Clerk, Bristol Cathedral
Chris Marshall, Head of Professional Development, Birmingham Conservatoire
Barnaby Martin, composer
Domingos de Mascarenhas (DPhil) musicologist
Sandy Matheson, Nordoff Robbins music therapist
Alison Mathews MMus BMus(hons)RCM ARCM, composer, private teacher, pianist
Colin Matthews, composer
David Matthews, composer
James Mayhew, artist and narrator
Gijs van der Meijden (The Netherlands). Microbiologist by profession, not a musician in any practical sense, but a deep lover thereof
Cecília Melo, Magistrate
Virgílio Melo, composer
Miguel Mera, head of Music, City, University of London
Chris Mercer, composer, Lecturer, Northwestern University
Nathan Mercieca, Teaching Associate, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University
Jonathan Midgley, lay clerk, Ely Cathedral
Max Midroit, pianist
Chloe Millar, violinist, freelance musician and teacher
Richard Miller, Composer, Arranger/Orchestrator, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic’s Christopher Brooks Composition Prizewinner, Director of Music, St Michael’s Church, Camden
Sasha Valeri Millwood, MA (Cantab.) MMus (GSMD), musician, musicologist, & doctoral researcher, University of Glasgow
David Milsom, Head of Performance, University of Huddersfield
Ruth Milsom, freelance teacher of piano and music theory, and accompanist
William Alberto Penafiel Miranda, 
Composer/Pianist at Queens College (Aaron Copland School of Music
Madeleine Mitchell, state-school educated violinist, professor, Royal College of Music
Cara Ellen Modisett, pianist, Episcopal music director and essayist
Kerry A. Moffit, Master Sergeant (Retired), United States Air Force Bands and Music Career Field, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines Orchestra Musician (lead and jazz trumpet), Grammy winner, and professional musician for 40+ years.
Alison Moncrieff-Kelly, cellist, music educator, and examiner
Josephine Montgomery, violinist, early years string teacher
Ivan Moody, composer, CESEM – Universidade Nova, Lisbon
Adrian Moore, composer, Reader in Music, University of Sheffield
Gillian Moore, Director of Music, South Bank Centre
Eva Moreda Rodriguez, Lecturer in Music, University of Glasgow
Dittany Morgan, former Sub principal Viola BBC symphony and teacher of Violin/ Viola
Huw Morgan, freelance choral director and organist
Kate Morgan, Director of Music, Harrogate Ladies’ College
Katie Morgan, flautist, music writer, and flute and music theory teacher
Michael Morse, composer, educator
Tim Motion, Photographer and musician
Catherine Motuz, trombonist
Thomas Mowrey, former producer for Deutsche Grammophon and Decca
Theresa Muir, Ph.D. Musicology, conductor and singer
John Mulroy chorister at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Gordon Munro, Director of Music, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Tommy Murtagh, cellist and educator
Rachel Musgrove, director, daytime choirs for retirees
Rachel Neiger, Pianist and teacher
Lisa Nelsen, Flute player, artist for Yamaha International, Tutor for Junior Guildhall School and former Specialist Flute Tutor at Wells Cathedral School, UK
Thi Nguyen , GSMD, IoE (MA in Music Education), violinist and teacher
Mike Nichols, Bassist. ACM lecturer, ABRSM consultant. Regularly work in orchestras and non reading bands
George Nicholson, composer, Professor in Composition, University of Sheffield
Marten Noorduin, Postdoctoral research assistant, University of Oxford
Kirk Noreen, Founder/Director, Ensemble Sospeso, New York, Composer
Mariko North, pianist
Dr Patrick Nunn, Lecturer in composition, Royal Academy of Music, London
Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE, double bassist, Founder, Artistic Director Chineke!
Richard Nye, BA (Hons) FLCM PGCE, teacher and composer
Michael Nyman, composer
Lady Anita O’Brien, Violinist/ Music Teacher
Dolors Olivé Vernet, music teacher, Headmaster, Teresa Miquel i Pàmies Elementary School
Des Oliver, composer
Philip Olleson, Emeritus Professor of Historical Musicology, University of Nottingham, and Immediate Past President, The Royal Musical Association
Nicholas Olsen, composer
Clare Orrell, primary school headteacher and music graduate
Jill Osborn BMus, private piano teacher
Richard Osmond, Director of Music, Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School
Ursula O’Sullivan, music teacher and musician, CSN College of Further Education, Cork, Ireland
Rebecca Oswald, composer, pianist, former faculty at the University of Oregon School of Music
Luke Ottevanger, Director of Music, composer
Martijn Padding, head of composition department, Royal Conservatory, Den Haag
Ian Pace, pianist, Lecturer, Head of Performance, City, University of London
Professor Carrie Paechter, Head of .Educational Studies, Goldsmiths, University of London
Christopher Painter, composer, brass bandsman, lecturer, music publisher, trumpet player. Barry, South Wales
Joan Arnau Pàmies, composer, Aural Skills Instructor, Northwestern University
Dr Tom Pankhurst, Music Teacher and Author
Tom Parkinson, composer and sound designer, Royal Holloway, University of London
Ben Pateman, Flautist and retired music producer
Anthony Payne, composer
Jenny Pearson, freelance cellist, teacher at Severn Arts Worcester
Michael Pearson, professional violinist
Jane Peckham BMus, MA, School Governor, Double Bassist
Tim Pells, Head of Guitar and Lecturer, Colchester Institute and Centre for Young Musicians
Chris Pelly, Concerts Series Administrator, University of Leeds
Damian Penfold, conductor and primary school governor
Ian Penwarden-Allen, choral conductor and teacher of music
Selah Perez-Villar, pianist and music educator
Lola Perrin, piano teacher, composer
Dr. Jeffrey Peterson, Associate Professor of Vocal Coaching/ Opera Conductor
Baylor University, Waco, TX
Theodore R Peterson, Composer
Joe Pettitt BMus(hons), bassist, bandleader and teacher of jazz bass and electric guitar at Westminster School and Trinity School, Croydon
Stephen Pettitt, writer and critic
James Philips, Classical Guitarist and self taught music reader
John Pickard, composer and Head of Music, University of Bristol
David Pickett, Former Prof., Indiana University School of Music, conductor, musicologist, tonmeister
Oliver Pickup, composer
David Pickvance, film and TV composer, composer-in-residence to the BBC
Jenni Pinnock, composer and instrumental tutor
David Pinto, performer with the Jaye Consort and musicologist, contributing editor to two volumes of Musica Britannica
John Pitts, composer and music teacher
Stephen Plaice, librettist, Writer in Residence Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Tamasine Plowman MA
Lara Poe, composer and pianist, graduate student at RCM
Irini Urania Politi, artist, teacher, amateur musician
Rosie Pollock, BMus MA (learned notation aged 6/7)
Benjamin Pope, Conductor working with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Orchestras
Francis Pott, Professor of Composition & Head of Research, London College of Music, University of West London
Caroline Potter, Reader in Music, Kingston University
Eleri Angharad Pound, freelance harpist and composer, amateur choir singer
Jonathan Powell, pianist
Mark Powell, Conducting Scholar / ALP Faculty, Eastman School of Music
Steph Power, composer, critic, writer on music
Gillian Poznansky, flute player and examiner
Scott Price, Director of Music, The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School
Dr Nicholas Stefano Prozzillo
Toby Purser, conductor
Peter Puskás, promoter and artist manager
Irene Quirmbach, violin instructor at the Francis W. Parker School in Chicago, IL (USA), active freelance violinist
Giovanni Radivo, concertmaster, Orchestre national de Lyon (France)
Caroline Rae, Reader in Music and pianist, Cardiff University
Lorenda Ramou, pianist, musicologist
Sanna Raninen, Research Associate, University of Sheffield
Torsten Rasch, composer
Nadia Ratsimandresy, ondist and Professor of onde Martenot and ondéa, Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional de Boulogne-Billancourt
Manvinder Rattan, CEO and Head of Conductor Training, Sing for Pleasure
Sir Simon Rattle, conductor, principal conductor, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, conductor-elect, London Symphony Orchestra
Robert Rawson, Reader in Music, School of Music and Performing Arts, Canterbury Christ Church University
Steven Reale, Associate Professor of Music Theory, Youngstown State University, Youngstown, OH
Carla Rees, Music Programme Leader, Open College of the Arts
Camden Reeves, Professor and Head of Music, University of Manchester
John Reid, pianist and teacher
Chris Rice, Director, Altarus Records
Sally Richardson, Artist Manager; owner of Tashmina Artists
Christiaan Richter, composer
Dr Tim Ridley, Director of Music, Glenalmond Gollege
Judith Robinson, Creative Project Leader for Education, Sound and Music
Heather Roche, clarinettist, co-editor of TEMPO
Dr Marc Rochester, lecturer in music history and criticism, Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, National University of Singapore
Paul Rodmell, Head of Music, University of Birmingham
Carlos Rodriguez, pianist, conductor and MBA from ChileJames Roe, President & Executive Director, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, New York City
Martin Roscoe, pianist, Professor, Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Pamela Rose, ABRSM Theory Examiner, Music Educator
Daniele Rosina, Director of Orchestral Studies University of Birmingham, Conducting Tutor, Birmingham Conservatoire
Luke Roskams, retired violinist
Tish Roskams, B.Mus retired music teacher
Toby Roundell, composer and educationist
Rebecca Rowe, composer and music educator
Cyrilla Rowsell, Kodály specialist, teacher at GSMD and for the British Kodály Academy, co-author of Jolly Music
Edward Rushton, composer and pianist
Julian Rushton, Emeritus Professor of Music, University of Leeds
Isabelle Ryder, private piano teacher
Leo Samama, composer, musicologist, educator and author (The Netherlands)
Abel Sanchez-Aguilera, pianist and biochemist, Madrid
Helen Sanderson, Winston Churchill Fellowship in guitar education, Artistic Director of National Youth Guitar Ensemble, CEO of Guitar Circus, guitar professor at RWCMD
Anthony Sandle, opera singer
James Savage-Hanford, freelance singer and Visiting Tutor in Theory & Analysis at Royal Holloway, University of London
Melinda Sawers, Director of Music, Wadhurst, Melbourne Grammar School (Australia)
Paul Scanling, Music Director, Marietta Symphony Orchestra
Brian Schembri, Artistic Director and Principal Conductor, Malta Philharmonic Orchestra
Jonathan Schranz, Choral Conductor, London
Thomas Schmidt, Professor of Music, University of Manchester
William James Schmidt, pianist & composer, MMusPerf (University of Melbourne), MA (MUK Vienna)
Christian Schruff, Journalist – Musikvermittler, Berlin
Annelies Scott ARAM, cello and music theory teacher
Fred Scott, founder, Soundpractice Music
Matthew Scott, Professor of Composition, University of Southampton; Head Of Music, National Theatre (retired)
Peter J D Scott, Teaching Fellow, University of Bristol
Robert Secret ARAM, conductor & viola player
Florian Scheding, University of Bristol
Jeffrey Siegfried, saxophonist, doctoral candidate, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Linda Shaver-Gleason, PhD Musicology, University of California, Santa Barbara
Susan Sheppard, teacher of cello at RNCM and Trinity Laban and teacher of Latin
Daniel Sherer, professor of architecture, Columbia University and lifelong pianist and music lover
Rachel Shirley, Music teacher; PhD researcher in Music Education, Lancaster University
Andre Shlimon, musician and teacher
Robert Sholl, University of West London and The Royal Academy of Music
Martin Shorthose, Cantor and Choir Director, Antiochian Orthodox Church in the UK. Ex Layclerk at Coventry and Liverpool Cathedrals
Alexander Sigman, composer, researcher and educator
Angela Elizabeth Slater, Composer
Jeremy Silver, conductor, pianist, vocal coach
Nigel Simeone, music teacher, English Martyrs’ Catholic School
Mark Simpson, BBC Philharmonic Composer in Association and former BBC Young Musician of the year 2006
Wendy Skeen, BMus(Hons), Guildhall School of Music & Drama; Freelance pianist and piano teacher
M I Skinner, M.St. (Mus)(Oxon), PG Dip MTPP, ALCM, Dip ABCD. Musician, teacher, conductor, and musicologist
Shirley Smart, jazz cellist, musicianship and improvisation teacher, City, University of London, and Royal College of Music Junior Department
Ben Smith, pianist and composer, postgraduate student, Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Charles J. Smith, Slee Chair of Music Theory, University at Buffalo
David J. Smith, Professor of Music, University of Aberdeen
George Smith, composer and freelance piano/voice teacher, University of Southampton graduate
Harriet Smith, music journalist
Steve Smith, guitarist, multi-instrumentalist
Tim Smith, Director of Music, St. Mary Harrow on the Hill/Arts Faculty Leader, Heathland School
John Snijders, pianist and Associate Professor of Music Performance, Durham University
Ernest So, concert pianist
Peter A. Soave, Concert Accordionist, Founder Peter Soave Music Academy, in Sauris Italy
Stephen Soderberg, Senior Specialist for Contemporary Music (retired), Music Division, Library of Congress
Zoë South, (state-educated) professional opera singer, singing teacher
Clare Southworth, Professor of Flute RAM
Shauna Spargo, amateur violinist, soprano in the local church choir (learned to read music at 6 when I had free violin lessons at a state primary school)
Jeroen Speak, freelance composer and teacher
Simon Speare, Head of Composition and Contemporary Music, Royal College of Music Junior Department
Mic Spencer, Associate Professor of Music, University of Leeds
Jane Spencer-Davis. Accountant specialising in musicians and violist
Mary Stagg, Primary Music specialist
Sarah Steinhardt, piano teacher, Greenwich Academy, CT USA
James Michael Stergiopoulos, retired electronics engineer
Adam Stern, conductor (Seattle Philharmonic, Sammamish Symphony), Seattle WA, USA
Clare Stevens, music journalist
Susanne Stanzeleit, violinist, tutor, Birmingham Conservatoire
Peter Stoller, songwriter, music writer, popular music archivist and historian at Leiber/Stoller Productions
Danny Stone, brass teacher, former classroom teacher (state sector U.K.)
Denise Stout, Choral Director
George Strickland, freelance oboist, postgrad at Royal Northern College of Music
Ashley Sutherland, music librarian, freelance clarinettist
Owain Sutton, private instrumental teacher
Professor Bill Sweeney, composer
Aleks Szram, Academic Lecturer and Piano Professorial Staff, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
Caitriona Talbot BA Mod, freelance music tutor, Sefton
Diego Jiménez Tamame, composer
Gábor Tarján, composer, percussionist, Musical Director Het Filiaal
Christopher Tarrant, Lecturer in Music, Anglia Ruskin University
Mark Tatlow, conductor, educator, researcher Department of Culture & Aesthetics, University of Stockholm
Michelle Taylor-Cohen, Violinist, educator & arranger
Alun Thomas, professional violinist /Alexander Technique Coordinator Trinty Laban
Marisa Thornton-Wood, professor of piano, Royal Academy of Music
Paul Timms, music teacher, pianist, violinist & conductor
Phillip Tolley, Choral Music Advocate, British Choirs on the Net
Mikel Toms, conductor
Daniel Tong, pianist. Founder, Wye Valley Chamber Music. Head of Piano in Chamber Music, Birmingham Conservatoire
Julian Tovey, singer and lecturer, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Simon Toyne, Executive Director of Music, David Ross Education Trust
Peter Tregear, Professor, Royal Holloway, University of London
John Traill, Director of Music, St. Anne’s College, Oxford University; Director, Oxford Conducting Institute
Natalie Tsaldarikis, pianist, teacher, PhD student, City, University of London
Kathleen Tynan, Head of Vocal Studies and Opera, Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin
Fredrik Ullén, pianist, professor of cognitive neuroscience
Luk Vaes, pianist, reseacher, teacher
Maura Valenti BM, The Juilliard School; MM, Yale School of Music; current MPhil student in musicology, University of Oxford
John Van der Slice, composer
Dr Edward Venn, Associate Professor of Music, University of Leeds
Massimiliano Viel, Composer and Professor at Conservatory of Milan, Italy
Simon Vincent, composer, performer, and former Visiting Lecturer at City University London, University of Bayreuth, University of Potsdam and University of Applied Sciences Potsdam
Matthew Vine, volunteer music teacher (Kampala, Uganda)
Andrea Vogle, Percussion Tutor RNCM, JRNCM, Chetham’s School of Music
Zerlina Vulliamy, prospective university music student and DfE Music Scholar RCMJD
Alison Wahl, soprano, singer-songwriter, and music teacher
Charlie Wakely, Physics teacher and amateur musician
Helen Wallace, Kings Place Music Foundation, Soundsense Music
Neil Wallace, Programme Director, Doelen Concert Hall, Rotterdam
Richard Wallace, violist Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, viola tutor Bangor University
David Warburton MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Select Committee on Music Education
John Warburton BMus Hons Tonmeister, Associate Lecturer, University of Surrey Department of Music and Media
Dr Michael Ward, concert pianist, conductor and composer
Philippa Ward, pianist, teacher, Wellington, New Zealand
Jenny Warren, maths teacher and classical soprano who learned to sight read at state school
Celia Waterhouse, Piano Teacher, Music Educator, Lead Editor for British Kodaly Academy Songbook
Ashley Wass, pianist
Huw Watkins, composer and pianist
Hannah Watson, secondary school music teacher, violinist
Rachel Watson, cellist, cello teacher with experience of secondary school teaching
Trevor Watt, former music student, now lawyer
Dr Richard Wattenbarger, musicologist, Adjunct Instructor, Music Studies, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Sarah Watts, Associate in Music Performance at Sheffield University, bass clarinet tutor RNCM, Clarinet tutor at Nottingham University
David Way, violinist/violist/teacher
Philip Wayne, Headmaster, Royal Grammar School, High Wycombe, also Musician
James Webb, Director of Music, Hull Collegiate School
Gillian Webster , Opera Singer and teacher
James Weeks, composer, Associate Head of Composition, Guildhall School of Music & Drama
Marcus Weeks, composer and jazz and reggae trombonist
Richard Whalley,  Senior Lecturer in Composition, University of Manchester
Mike Wheeler, music writer and adult education tutor, WEA
Simon Whiteley, BMus, Lay Clerk at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, and founder member of The Queen’s Six, a cappella ensemble
Adam Whittaker, Post-doctoral researcher (Music and Music Education), Birmingham City University
Dr Anthony Whittaker, composer, piano teacher and examiner
Sally Whitwell, composer, pianist. BMus(Hons) ANU, Australia
Joanna Wicherek, pianist and teacher
Judith Wiemers, PhD student at Queen’s University Belfast
Charles Wiffen, Assistant Dean, College of Liberal Arts, Bath Spa University
Louise Wiggins, PhD student, University of Bristol; harpist; and peripatetic music teacher
Emma Wild, Freelance Violist
Christopher Wiley, National Teaching Fellow and Senior Lecturer in Music, University of Surrey
John Willan, former EMI producer and Managing Director London Philharmonic
Ceri Williams, music teacher
David Carlston Williams, Organist and Music Teacher
Victoria Williams AmusTCL BA music theory teacher
James Williamson. Composer, PhD candidate at the University of York
Chesterton K. Whiteman, adjunct professor of composition, Oral Roberts University
Dr Alexandra Wilson, Reader in Music, Oxford Brookes University
Andrew Wilson, Freelance musician, and Head Teacher, Teesside High School
Jay Wilkinson, flute and theory teacher
Katherine Williams, Lecturer in Music and Head of Performance, Plymouth University
Frances Wilson LTCL (AKA The Cross-Eyed Pianist); pianist, writer, and teacher
Jayne Lee Wilson, Music Lover & Reviewer, FoR3 Forum
Natalie Windsor, BaHons PgCert (Birmingham Conservatoire), Mezzo soprano, jazz singer and music teacher
Lorraine Womack-Banning, pianist, piano teacher, adjudicator
Jaye Wood, BA Hons, freelance classical piano and voice teacher
Toby Wood, Music recording engineer and producer
Liz Woodhouse, piano teacher
Ronald Woodley, Professor of Music, Birmingham Conservatoire, Birmingham City University
Catherine Woodman. Head of Keyboard Studies at Redmaids High School and examiner
Kenneth Woods, Artistic Director, English Symphony Orchestra
Christopher Woolmer, Organist, teacher, Director of Music, Oakwood School, Purley
David Wordsworth, conductor and agent
Dr Emily Worthington, freelance clarinettist/Lecturer, University of Huddersfield
Andrew Wright, School of Education, University of Buckingham
Elspeth Wyllie, Pianist, Teacher, member of the ISM
Catherine Wyn-Rogers, opera singer and teacher
Anna Wyse, B.Eng. M.Sc.(Eng), AIEMA
Joshua D. Xerri, Sub-Organist (St Alphege, Solihull), singer, composer
Amit Yahav, pianist, doctoral student, Royal College of Music
Paul Yarish, pianist, Registered Piano Technician, organ student
Marc Yeats, composer and visual artist
Nina C. Young, Assistant Professor of Music Composition & Multimedia Performance, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Toby Young, composer, Junior Research Fellow, University of Oxford
Jay Alan Yim, composer, Associate Professor of Music, Northwestern University
Alistair Zaldua, composer and conductor, visiting lecturer in Music, Canterbury Christ Church University
Mirjam Zegers, music consultant, teacher, amateur pianist
Nicolas Zekulin, Chief Executive & Artistic Director, National Youth Orchestras of Scotland
Patrick Zuk, Associate Professor in Music, Durham University
Julio Zúñiga, composer, graduate student, Harvard University
Rasmus Zwicki, composer

[ADDENDUM: Since first placing this letter online, I have been alerted to two relevant phenomena: the Department of Music at Harvard University have now removed a requirement to study theory, or Western art music history, from their core curriculum . Worse, Texan musicologist Kendra Leonard has created a ‘Privilege Walk’ for musicians, a way of publicly shaming those who, for example, were taught music theory (no. 12), care about notated music (no. 19), can read more than one clef (no. 36), or had advanced instruction in a foreign language (no. 39). It is not clear from Leonard’s biography if she teaches regularly at an institution, but certainly such ‘privilege walks’ exist elsewhere in the US; I will blog more about this on another occasion. In case anyone is unclear, as stated above this addendum does not form part of the letter to which signatories put their name and represents a personal view.]

 

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Reports from the Malcolm Layfield Trial

In this blog post, which I will update regularly, I will be posting all available reports from the rape trial of former Chetham’s violin teacher and Head of Strings at the Royal Northern College of Music, Malcolm Layfield. As this is a live trial at the time of posting, there will be no comment whatsoever, and any comments posted below which would be even remotely prejudicial will be instantly removed. There are also several reporters live tweeting from the trial, and I will endeavour to include their tweets here too.


Day 1: Monday June 1st, 2015

Tweets from @helenpidd , Northern Editor of The Guardian

I’m in Manchester crown court to report on the rape trial of former Chetham’s and Royal College of Music teacher, Malcolm Layfield.

Apologies: Malcolm Layfield was head of strings at the RNCM until February 2013.

Malcolm Layfield’s rape trial has not begun yet. A jury should be empanelled this afternoon and the prosecution will open the case.

Malcolm Layfield admits “inappropriate sexual relationships” with a number of pupils, including the complainant, but denies 1 count of rape.

One of Malcolm Layfield’s pupils claims he plied her with drink and drove her to “the middle of nowhere” and raped her when she was 18.

A police video interview given by Layfield’s alleged victim is shown to the jury. Supervision “woefully inadequate” at Chetham’s in 1982.

Victim says Layfield groomed her by confiding in her about an affair he was having with a woman in London. “I was his confidante.”

After the rape the victim went to the RNCM where she had consensual sex with Layfield for a 6 week period, usually in the back of his car…

“He called it an affair but it wasn’t. There was no affection, no romance. It was him abusing his power to get sex.” Layfield’s complainant.

…but once he instigated sex at his house in Didsbury, South Manchester, when his wife and children were home:” absolutely disgusting”.



Tweets from @mrdaveguest , BBC Northwest Tonight chief reporter

Former head of strings at Royal Northern College of music in court accused of raping a student in 1982.

Malcolm Layfield denies the allegation but prosecution claim he used his power and influence to get what he wanted from the teenager.

In video interview Mr Layfield’s accuser says: “He was going to have sex with me and there was nothing I could do about it.”

Accuser says she told RNCM about Mr Layfield in 2001 when he was promoted to Head of Strings.

She added: “it was absolutely disgraceful that he was made Head of Strings.”

Malcolm Layfield’s accuser says they had sexual relationship when she was student at RNCM and he worked there but she says”it was sordid.”


Press Association Mediapoint
, June 1st, 2015
Kim Pilling, ‘Violin Teacher ‘Used Power to Rape”

A violin teacher improperly used his “power and influence” to rape an 18-year-old female student, a jury has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have committed the offence in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall after he plied his alleged victim with alcohol.
Jurors at Manchester Crown Court were told it was a case about “abuse of power” in the early 1980s by the defendant who worked at the “world renowned” Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in Manchester.
Prosecutor Peter Cadwallader said: “He was a fine teacher with power and influence. He taught highly gifted students, many of whom had ambitions to go with their talent.
“It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly.
“He admits that he had inappropriate sexual relationships with a number of female students.
“The complainant in this case was one such student.”
He told the jury that the pair did have a consensual sexual relationship which lasted for about six weeks but that the first occasion they had sex was rape.
Mr Cadwallader said: “For the ambitious student, her violin teacher was critical.
“Not only for her progress at those two institutions, Chetham’s and the Royal Northern College of Music, but also for his influence on her future music career.
“We suggest that he used that power and influence in an improper and inappropriate way, in essence, to obtain sex.”
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape.
Mr Cadwallader said the complainant accepted she “went along” with the sexual relationship “however reluctant she may have been”, but the exception was the first encounter.
The complainant was among a number of students who attended a summer course run by Layfield and his wife.
Layfield was said to have provided “a strong alcoholic punch” for the group and plied his accuser with whisky, the court heard.
His alleged victim escaped his attentions as she got into her sleeping bag upstairs but recalled him telling her to get up.
Mr Cadwallader said: “She remembers getting into his car but cannot really remember how she got there. She was very drunk by that time.
“It is the prosecution case that he (Layfield) knew full well that she was very drunk. Indeed the Crown say he was largely responsible for that.
“In her befuddled drunken state she thought he wanted to talk to her as he did in the past.
“She soon realised that it was not the case because he took her in his car to an isolated spot and got into the back of the car.
“By then she realised he was going to have sex with her, come what may, and she felt she could do nothing about it.
“She tried moving away from him, to no avail. She was frightened, she gave in.
“Submission, members of the jury, is not necessarily consent. The Crown say he knew full well at that time she was not consenting.”
He said the early 1980s was “a very different world” in which the Crown suggested that no-one would have believed her.
He said this was “perhaps illustrated” in 2001 when the complainant and others complained to the Royal Northern College of Music about Layfield’s inappropriate relationships with female pupils.
Mr Cadwallader said: “The result? He was made head of strings at the college. Promoted.
“So, members of the jury, why did she then – however reluctantly – have a consensual sexual relationship with him after the incident in Cornwall?
“The answer, the prosecution say, is power and influence.
“He had power over her progress at the college and influence over her future career within the music world.”
The jury was played a video of the police interview with the complainant.
She said she had studied at Chetham’s from the age of 14 where supervision was “woefully inadequate” and students were allowed to “run riot”.
She told a detective: “Malcolm went out of his way to cultivate a relationship where he was the mentor, the father figure.
“He always wanted to know what everyone was doing … inappropriate conversations. He wanted to be extra-friendly.”
She said he bought alcohol in the pub for under-age students on a previous school trip.
During the Cornwall trip, she said, he confided in her that he was cheating on his wife with a woman in London.
Recalling the alleged rape, she said: “There was no violence but he was using his strength.
“I suppose I just gave in and I have hated myself for that ever since. In some ways I was protecting him … how could he do that to someone? He clearly had no respect for women. He clearly targets women. I was a target.
“He knew he was going to do this. I couldn’t deal with it.”
She said she went on have sex with him in the back of his car in disused areas after lessons at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM).
The complainant said Layfield initiated sex with her on one occasion at his former home in Didsbury while his wife and children were in the house.
She said: “I was just going along with it. I didn’t want it. I didn’t fancy him.
“I was just not equipped to deal with it.
“He called them affairs. It was not an affair for me. There was no romance. It was just him abusing his power to get sex.”
She said he later told her that if she changed teachers at the college he would take all her freelance work away from her.
“Again, I was under his influence,” she said. “I really thought he was going to do that.
“He was a real bully as well. He was only interested in his own career and getting on in the music business.”
She said she would cry during lessons with him before the relationship eventually fizzled out.
The complainant said her memories of the alleged incident were later “triggered” when Layfield was appointed head of strings at the college, which she found “absolutely disgraceful”.
She said she rang Professor Edward Gregson, then principal of the RNCM, but said she got the impression that unless she was prepared to “cry rape” and go to court then Layfield would not have the job taken away from him.
The complainant said she felt “fobbed off” and she was not prepared to take it any further legally at that stage.
Asked by the interviewing officer how the alleged rape affected her life, she replied: “I never like being a victim. I am not that sort of person.
“I really hate him. I have spent far too long thinking about it. What I really, really want is closure.”
The trial continues tomorrow when the complainant will give evidence.


Slipped Disc
, June 1st, 2015
Norman Lebrecht, ‘The Third Chetham’s Sex Abuse Trial Begins’

The rape trial has opened at Manchester Crown Court of Malcolm Layfield, former violin teacher at Chethams School and head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM).
Layfield is an internationally known teacher and performer. Founder of the Goldberg Ensemble, he has appeared at New York’s international Bang on a Can festival and claims to have played as concertmaster at the Carmel Bach Festival in California*. He was also leader of the London Bach Orchestra.
According to prosecution statements tweeted from the court by the Guardian’s Helen Pidd:
– In the summer of 1982 Malcolm Layfield raped an 18-year-old pupil he taught the violin, Manchester crown court hears.
– Malcolm Layfield admits “inappropriate sexual relationships” with a number of pupils, including the complainant, but denies 1 count of rape.

– One of Malcolm Layfield’s pupils claims he plied her with drink and drove her to “the middle of nowhere” and raped her when she was 18.
– A police video interview given by Layfield’s alleged victim is shown to the jury. Supervision “woefully inadequate” at Chetham’s in 1982.
The BBC’s Dave Guest adds:
– In video interview Mr Layfield’s accuser says: “He was going to have sex with me and there was nothing I could do about it.”
For updates on the trial follow @helenpidd and @mrdaveguest.
This is the third of five likely trials exposing allegations of decades of sexual abuse at Chetham’s and RNCM.
Michael Brewer, Chetham’s former Director of Music, was jailed for six years for assaults on a 14 year-old girl; his accuser, Frances Andrade, killed herself during the course of the trial.
Nicholas Smith, a conducting teacher, was jailed last year for eight months.
After Layfield, trials are expected of Wen Zhou Li and Chris Ling, both ex-Chet’s teachers.
The present head of Chet’s, Claire Moreland, who was not there at the time of the alleged offences, has announced her early retirement.

Here’s a PA report on the trial’s first day.
* Update: we are informed by the Carmel Bach Festival that he participated once, in 1994, as second chair in the first violins, not as concertmaster.


Mail Online
, June 1st, 2015
Khaleda Rahman, ‘Violin teacher at world famous music school ‘used his power and influence to rape female student, 18, on trip to Cornwall”

Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have committed offence in back of his car
The jury were told it was a case about ‘abuse of power’ by the defendant
He worked at ‘world renowned’ Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester
Court told the pair did have a six-month consensual sexual relationship
A violin teacher at a world famous music school allegedly used his ‘power and influence’ to rape an 18-year-old female student during a trip to Cornwall, a court has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have committed the offence in the back of his car during the trip after he plied his alleged victim with alcohol in the early 1980s.
A jury at Manchester Crown Court were told it was a case about an ‘abuse of power’ by the defendant who worked at the ‘world renowned’ Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in Manchester.
Prosecutor Peter Cadwallader said: ‘He was a fine teacher with power and influence. He taught highly gifted students, many of whom had ambitions to go with their talent.
‘It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly.
‘He admits that he had inappropriate sexual relationships with a number of female students.
‘The complainant in this case was one such student.’
He told the jury that the pair did have a consensual sexual relationship which lasted for about six weeks, but that the first occasion they had sex was rape.
Mr Cadwallader said: ‘For the ambitious student, her violin teacher was critical.
‘Not only for her progress at those two institutions, Chetham’s and the Royal Northern College of Music, but also for his influence on her future music career.
‘We suggest that he used that power and influence in an improper and inappropriate way, in essence, to obtain sex.’
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape. The trial continues.


Manchester Evening News
, June 1st, 2015
Chris Osuh, ‘Chetham’s School abuse case: Violin teacher Malcolm Layfield acused of raping vulnerable pupil in the 1980s; The respected tutor is accused of attacking a teenage girl during school trip. He denies rape’

A respected violin tutor ‘raped’ a teenage girl while working at the city’s ‘world-renowned’ Chetham’s School of Music, a court has been told.
Malcolm Layfield is alleged to have gone on to work as head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music in 2001 – despite management learning of the allegation against him.
A Manchester Crown Court sex trial has been told he raped a ‘vulnerable’ Chetham’s pupil in the back of his car on a school trip during the 1980s.
In a video of a March 2013 police interview played to the jury the complainant, now a middle-aged woman, said: “I didn’t want it – I was plied with drink, I was in the middle of nowhere.”
Mr Layfield, 63, of Victoria Pit Marina, Higher Poynton, Cheshire, who is also known as John Layfield, denies rape.
The jury has been told it may be asked to consider whether there was ‘an element of the casting couch involved’ in the case.
The court heard the complainant went on to have consensual sex with the teacher for six weeks.
“There was no affection, there was no romance, nothing. It was just him abusing his power to get sex… nothing apart from stiff drinks in the bar and sordid sex in the back of his car. My self-esteem was at rock bottom – I was Malcolm’s bit on the side,” the woman said.
The woman told police that when she was at at Chetham’s Mr Layfield was ‘very friendly’ and the ‘teacher to be with’.
Describing the alleged rape that led to the ‘affair’, she claimed he ‘targeted’ her on a summer school event organised by him and his wife, confiding in her about an ‘affair’ he was conducting in London.
On the last night of the trip, its alleged, Mr Layfield ‘plied’ the victim with whisky during a party game of ‘sardines’.
“At this point I was staring to get worried”, she said, “but I still thought it’s not going to happen to me.”
He is later alleged to have ordered the pupil into his car, where the alleged attack took place.
The woman said: “He was going to have sex with me and there was not a thing I could do about it… I was in danger. There was no violence but he was using his strength. I suppose I just gave in and I have hated myself for that ever since… he’s a real bully… I hate him.” Proceeding


The Guardian
, June 1st, 2015
Helen Pidd, ‘Violin teacher raped former student, court hears; Malcolm Layfield admits ‘inappropriate sexual relationships’ but denies abusing his power to assault former Chetham’s school of music pupil’

A violin teacher abused his power and influence to rape a pupil from a world-renowned music school in Manchester, a court has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, former head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) and a one-time violin tutor at Chetham’s school of music in Manchester, admits having “inappropriate sexual relationships” with a number of his former students, including the rape complainant, a jury at Manchester crown court was told.
But the 63-year-old denies raping her in the back of his car at a summer camp in the early 1980s, when she was 18 and he was a married father in his early 30s.
Layfield’s alleged victim claims the rape took place the summer she left Chetham’s, where she had been a boarder.
Opening the case for the prosecution, Peter Cadwallader told the jury that the case involved “abuse of power”. Layfield was a “fine teacher with power and influence” who taught “highly gifted” and ambitious students, said the barrister.
“It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly. He admits that he had inappropriate sexual relationships with a number of his former students. [The complainant, who cannot be named,] was one such student,” said Cadwallader, adding: “It will be a matter for you to consider whether there was something of the casting couch involved.”
In a police video interview played to the jury, the complainant described how Layfield groomed her by offering her lifts back from rehearsals. During the journey, he would confide in her about an affair he was having with a woman in London. “He asked me whether he should tell his wife. I was the confidante,” the witness said. “He did this, very calculated, so I was the person he would talk to.”
He would also make inappropriate remarks during their lessons, once commenting that she looked like she had “no clothes on” when she turned up in white dungarees.
Layfield also acted as a “father figure”. But he had a reputation for lavishing inappropriate attention on female pupils, said the woman. Chetham’s, said the complainant, was a place where supervision was “wholly inadequate” and children “ran riot”.
The woman described the evening leading up to the alleged rape at a summer camp in Cornwall where he plied her with whiskey. It was organised by Layfield and his wife at a cottage where they were staying with their young children.
After going to bed, she remembers waking up hearing Layfield saying “let’s get [her] up” and pulling her out of her sleeping bag with the help of two male pupils. She then recalled him driving her “to the middle of nowhere” and forcing himself on her in the back seat of the car. She described trying to pull away from him as he used his strength to rape her, before driving them back to the cottage, where his wife was up and making breakfast for his children.
Later that year, he would have sex with her after drinks at a college bar, usually in the back of his car in an abandoned car park. Once he instigated sex in the front room of his house in Didsbury, south Manchester, while his wife and children were home, she said. He was “disgusting”, the woman said, insisting that while she consented on these later occasions, she never wanted to sleep with him but felt she had to.
“He called it an affair. But it wasn’t an affair. There was no affection, no romance. It was him abusing his power to get sex. That’s what it was,” she said. “He was only interested in his own career and getting on in the music business.”
She said he once threatened to stop her getting freelance work as a musician and said she felt humiliated by being “Malcolm’s bit on the side”.
The court heard the woman first made an official complaint about Layfield in 2001, when he was promoted to head of strings at the RNCM. She described writing a letter to the then principal, Edward Gregson, telling him what Layfield had done to her and others and urging him to reconsider the appointment.
Layfield got the job and only resigned in February 2013 after Greater Manchester police began investigating him for rape.
The case continues.


BreakingNews.ie
, June 1st, 2015
‘Violin teacher ‘used power to rape”

A violin teacher in the UK improperly used his “power and influence” to rape an 18-year-old female student, a jury has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have committed the offence in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall after he plied his alleged victim with alcohol.
Jurors at Manchester Crown Court were told it was a case about “abuse of power” in the early 1980s by the defendant who worked at the “world renowned” Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in Manchester.
Prosecutor Peter Cadwallader said: “He was a fine teacher with power and influence. He taught highly gifted students, many of whom had ambitions to go with their talent.
“It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly.
“He admits that he had inappropriate sexual relationships with a number of female students.
“The complainant in this case was one such student.”
He told the jury that the pair did have a consensual sexual relationship which lasted for about six weeks but that the first occasion they had sex was rape.
Mr Cadwallader said: “For the ambitious student, her violin teacher was critical.
“Not only for her progress at those two institutions, Chetham’s and the Royal Northern College of Music, but also for his influence on her future music career.
“We suggest that he used that power and influence in an improper and inappropriate way, in essence, to obtain sex.”
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape.
The jury was played a video of the police interview with the complainant.
She said she had studied at Chetham’s from the age of 14 where supervision was “woefully inadequate” and students were allowed to “run riot”.
She told a detective: “Malcolm went out of his way to cultivate a relationship where he was the mentor, the father figure.
“He always wanted to know what everyone was doing … inappropriate conversations. He wanted to be extra-friendly.”
She said he bought alcohol in the pub for under-age students on a previous school trip.
During the Cornwall trip, she said, he confided in her that he was cheating on his wife with a woman in London.
Recalling the alleged rape, she said: “There was no violence but he was using his strength.
“I suppose I just gave in and I have hated myself for that ever since. In some ways I was protecting him … how could he do that to someone? He clearly had no respect for women. He clearly targets women. I was a target.
“He knew he was going to do this. I couldn’t deal with it.”
She said she went on to have sex with him in the back of his car in disused areas after lessons at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM).
The complainant said Layfield initiated sex with her on one occasion at his former home in Didsbury while his wife and children were in the house.
She said: “I was just going along with it. I didn’t want it. I didn’t fancy him.
“I was just not equipped to deal with it.
“He called them affairs. It was not an affair for me. There was no romance. It was just him abusing his power to get sex.”
She said he later told her that if she changed teachers at the college he would take all her freelance work away from her.
“Again, I was under his influence,” she said. “I really thought he was going to do that.
“He was a real bully as well. He was only interested in his own career and getting on in the music business.”
She said she would cry during lessons with him before the relationship eventually fizzled out.
The complainant said her memories of the alleged incident were later “triggered” when Layfield was appointed head of strings at the college, which she found “absolutely disgraceful”.
She said she rang Professor Edward Gregson, then principal of the RNCM, but said she got the impression that unless she was prepared to “cry rape” and go to court then Layfield would not have the job taken away from him.
The complainant said she felt “fobbed off” and she was not prepared to take it any further legally at that stage.
Asked by the interviewing officer how the alleged rape affected her life, she replied: “I never like being a victim. I am not that sort of person.
“I really hate him. I have spent far too long thinking about it. What I really, really want is closure.”
The trial continues tomorrow when the complainant will give evidence.


BBC News
, June 1st, 2015
‘Chetham’s music professor ‘raped student in car’, court hears’

A former professor at a prestigious music school used his “power and influence” in order to rape a female student, a court has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, denies raping an 18-year-old from Chetham’s School of Music in the early 1980s.
Manchester Crown Court heard the attack occurred during a trip to Cornwall.
Prosecutor David Cadwallader said the alleged victim didn’t complain at the time “because nobody would have believed her back then.”
She said Mr Layfield plied her with drink, took her to a remote spot in his car and raped her.
The court heard the student went on to have a consensual relationship with Mr Layfield.
‘I didn’t fancy him’
But Mr Cadwallader said she only “went along” with it despite her reluctance, because the teacher was “critical” to her success at the school and future career.
“It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly,” the prosecutor said.
“He admits that he had inappropriate sexual relationships with a number of female students.
“The complainant in this case was one such student.”
During a filmed interview shown to the jury, the woman described the encounter alleged to have taken place in Mr Layfield’s car.
“He was going to have sex with me and there wasn’t a thing I could do about it.
“I gave in and I have hated myself for that ever since.”
Mr Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, also taught at Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM).
In 2001, the woman wrote to RNCM alleging Mr Layfield had been involved in inappropriate relationships with students.
He was later promoted to head of strings, Mr Cadwallader said.
The trial continues.


The Times
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Music teacher ‘abused power to rape student, 18”

A violin teacher improperly used his power and influence to rape a female student, a jury has been told. Malcolm Layfield, 63, who worked at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, allegedly raped the 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s.
Peter Cadwallader, for the prosecution, told Manchester crown court that the teenager had been on a summer course organised by Mr Layfield and his wife, where he had plied her with whisky. “She remembers getting into his car but cannot really remember how she got there. She was very drunk by that time,” Mr Cadwallader said. “She realised he was going to have sex with her, and she felt she could do nothing about it.”
Mr Layfield, of Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape. He has admitted inappropriate relationships with several female students, the court was told. He went on to have a six-week affair with his alleged victim, although Mr Cadwallader said that the first time they had sex it was rape. He added: “We suggest he used that power and influence in an improper and inappropriate way, in essence, to obtain sex.” The trial continues.


The Daily Telegraph
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Music school teacher ‘plied student with drink and raped her”

A VIOLIN teacher improperly used his power and influence to rape an 18-yearold female student, a jury has heard. Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have committed the offence in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall after he plied his alleged victim with alcohol.
Jurors at Manchester Crown Court were told it was a case about “abuse of power” in the early 1980s by the defendant who worked at the “world renowned” Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in the city.
Peter Cadwallader, prosecuting, said: “He was a fine teacher with power and influence. He taught highly gifted students, many of whom had ambitions to go with their talent. It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly.”
Mr Cadwallader told the jury the pair did have a consensual sexual relationship which lasted for about six weeks but that the first occasion they had sex was rape.
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape. The case continues.


Daily Mail
, June 2nd, 2015
James Tozer, ‘Violin Teacher got Pupil, 18, Drunk before Raping Her’

A LEADING violin teacher plied a teenage pupil with whisky during an alcohol-fuelled game of sardines then forced her to have sex with him in the back of his car, a jury heard yesterday.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, abused his power as a tutor at the renowned Chetham’s School of Music to rape the 18-year-old, knowing his ability to influence her career prospects would ensure she did not speak out, it was claimed.
She only came forward two decades later in protest at his appointment as head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music, but did not want to go to court.
More than ten years on, however, she changed her mind, and the teacher went on trial yesterday accused of attacking her in the early 1980s.
Layfield admits having inappropriate’ relationships with a number of students, the jury was told, but insists his six-week affair with his accuser was consensual throughout. The promising young violinist had been taught by Layfield at the Manchester music school from her mid-teens, the court heard, leaving Chetham’s when she was 18.
But that summer she and a number of fellow pupils went to a cottage in Cornwall for a summer school organised by Layfield and his wife.
On the final day Layfield prepared a strong, alcoholic punch’, Peter Cadwallader, prosecuting, told Manchester Crown Court.
He then suggested they played the party game sardines – squeezing into confined spaces around the cottage – the court heard. Alarm bells began ringing when she realised that wherever she tended to end up, the defendant ended up, and at the same time he was plying her with whisky from a bottle that he was carrying,’ Mr Cadwallader said.
Layfield then used her befuddled’ state to persuade her to get into his car, drove her to an isolated spot and attacked her, Mr Cadwallader said.
The woman told police: There was no violence but he was using his strength. I suppose I just gave in and I’ve hated myself for that ever since.’
Mr Cadwallader said Layfield knew perfectly well’ that she was not consenting to sex, but went ahead anyway.
The following term, he said, she began studying at the Royal Northern College of Music, also in Manchester, and still taught by Layfield.
She reluctantly’ had sex with him consensually on a number of occasions, said Mr Cadwallader, adding: He had power over her progress at the college and influence over her future career within the music world.’
Layfield, of Manchester, denies one count of rape.
The trial continues.


The Strad
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Rape trial of former head of strings Malcolm Layfield begins in Manchester’

The violinist, who denies the charge, was formerly head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music and taught at Chetham’s

The trial of former Royal Northern College of Music head of strings Malcolm Layfield has begun at Manchester crown court. The musician is accused of raping an 18-year-old pupil when he was a violin teacher at Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester, UK.

Layfield has admitted having ‘inappropriate sexual relationships’ with several former students, including his accuser, but denies the rape – said to have happened in the back of his car at a camp in Cornwall, the summer after she left the school in the early 1980s.

The alleged victim claims Layfield, then married and in his 30s, groomed her during lifts from rehearsals. Following the initial incident, the two had a consensual relationship, but according to prosecutor David Cadwallader the accuser ‘went along’ with the affair as Layfield was ‘critical’ to the success of her career, writes the BBC.

The alleged victim wrote to the RNCM in 2001 when Layfield was promoted to head of strings urging them to reconsider his appointment. Layfield resigned from that role in 2013 after police began investigating allegations made against him as part of Operation Kiso.

The inquiry into sex abuse at Chetham’s and the RNCM began in February 2013, following the conviction of former Chetham’s head of music Michael Brewer, who was jailed for six years and stripped of his OBE. His victim was violinist Frances Andrade, who killed herself after giving evidence at his trial.


Day 2: Tuesday June 1st

Tweets from @helenpidd

The woman who accuses Chetham’s/Royal Northern teacher Malcolm Layfield of raping her when she was 18 is about to give evidence in court.

She is to give evidence behind a curtain, screened from Malcolm Layfield but visible to judge and jury.

Layfield’s QC, Ben Myers, suggests to the complainant that Layfield “took advantage” of students who wanted to impress him…

Myers says Layfield admits “inappropriate” relationships with pupils before & after that with the rape complainant. She uses term “abusive”.

Layfield’s QC accuses the complainant of “cultivating” Layfield’s interest in her, knowing he had “form” for sleeping with his students.

She denies it, saying she wasn’t dressing deliberately provocatively in black dress and fishnets the night of the alleged rape.

Complainant: “it doesn’t matter what young people sing or what they wear. It’s not an invitation to rape.” (She sang The Masochism Tango).

Malcolm Layfield’s barrister has just produced a jewellery box containing cuff links he says the complainant bought Layfield as a thank you

The complainant says she can’t remember buying the gift.

Layfield’s barrister asks the complainant if she gave me an interview, which was published in the guardian. She says she did.

A school friend of the woman who accuses Malcolm Layfield of rape says it was “the norm” for teachers to have sex with students at Chetham’s

The friend says she met Layfield at a party some years after the alleged rape and he said he still masturbated thinking of the complainant.

His wife was also at the party.

Another friend of the complainant says there was a “very strong culture” of underage drinking alcohol at Chetham’s. Layfield “encouraged” it

The friend (a man) says Layfield would tell him about having sex with other pupils and in lessons would talk about students’ big breasts.



Tweets from @clarefallon, BBC Reporter in the North:

Defence cross examine alleged victim at trial of violin teacher Malcolm Layfield. he denies raping her. He worked at Chets & RNCM

Witness under cross examination: “It doesn’t matter what young people sing or chose to wear. it’s not an invitation to rape”

She’d been asked by the defence about a cabaret performance she gave on last night of a school summer camp – when she says she was raped

She was 18 at time. Defence asking her about a performance she – and other students – gave of “the masachism tango”

Defence points out that she was wearing fishnets and a black dress. She tells court “young people can wear whatever they like”

witness says she was plied with alcohol before alleged rape “he had a bottle of whisky… he was thrusting it in our faces”

She has told court Mr Layfield would “pressure” students to go to his summer camps. “there was pressure on you to go… that’s how i saw it”

Malcolm Layfield denies rape. But says he did have inappropriate relationships with students.

asked about why she went on to have consensual sex with her tutor: “i didn’t even fancy him. i found him disgusting.”

asked why she didn’t ask to switch tutors: “u have to say why & then u’ve got a rape to deal with. I just couldn’t deal with the situation”

Defence has shown the jury cufflinks – claiming alleged victim gave them to Mr Layfield. She says it’s possible but she doesn’t remember.

witness now being re-examed by prosecution. she’s asked why she got in the car (before she says she was raped by Malcolm Layfield)

witness: “i was a bit frightened of him.
he had a side to him that could turn.”

asked about why she didn’t complain at the time – and what impact she thought complaining would have on future career…..

“I thought they wouldn’t believe me. I’d given in. You’ve got to remember that I didn’t realise I’d been raped..
I thought it was my fault.”

Another former pupil giving evidence. He also went to summer camp in Cornwall. Says Mr Layfield took them on ‘booze runs’ to buy alcohol.

witness asked about recollection of alleged victim ending up in the car with Malcolm Layfield on the night she says she was raped….

witness says: ‘malcolm would manipulate situations. we were very young and he wasn’t. he was probably organising us without us realising it’



Tweets from @amywelchitv , Correspondent for ITV Granada.

Jury in trial of music teacher Malcolm Layfield have heard evidence from alleged rape victim. She claims she was 18 when he abused her.

Defence in trial of Malcolm Layfield tells court the alleged rape victim ‘could read the signals and was ready to cultivate his interest.’

Allegedly rape victim in Layfield trial says: ‘it doesn’t matter what young people say or choose to wear…it’s not an invitation to rape.’

Alleged rape victim in trial of Malcolm Layfield tells court ‘I was frightened of him and his influence. I felt like it was my fault.’


The Guardian, June 2nd, 2015
Helen Pidd, ‘Violin teacher’s accuser cultivated relationship, court told’

Defence lawyer for Malcolm Layfield suggests pupil acted provocatively and slept with Chetham’s teacher willingly

A woman who has accused her violin teacher of raping her when she was 18 wanted to have sex with him, knowing he had form for starting relationships with his pupils, a court has heard.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, former head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, denies raping the woman, whom he taught for several years at Chetham’s school of music in Manchester.

He insists he had consensual sex with her in the back of his car at a summer school he organised with his wife in Cornwall in the 1980s. He was a father in his 30s at the time.

Cross-examining the complainant at Manchester crown court on Tuesday, Layfield’s barrister suggested she cultivated a sexual relationship with him by dressing and acting provocatively and not objecting when he confided in her about an extramarital affair he was having with one of her contemporaries.

Ben Myers QC, defending, put it to her that on the night of the alleged rape she was dressed provocatively and sang a suggestive song during an end-of-course show.

She replied angrily: “It doesn’t matter what young people sing or choose to wear. It’s not an invitation to rape.” She denied Myers’ assertion that she must have known Layfield was sexually attracted to her when he started to offer her lifts and treat her as his confidante.

Myers said: “By this time this was a man who had a reputation for getting involved with female students.”

He suggested the woman slept with Layfield willingly at the summer camp and then again in Manchester during a six-week period, including once in her own bed, and continued to be taught by him for four years at college.

He said she had rewritten history only when she graduated and moved to a different city, but was still known in the music scene as “one of Malcolm’s bits-on-the-side”.

During the cross-examination, Myers produced a jewellery box containing cufflinks that Layfield claims the woman bought him as a thank-you present when he finished teaching her at college. The complainant said she could not remember buying them.

She acknowledged having given an interview to the Guardian in 2013 about the abuse she said Layfield subjected her to.

The case continues.


ITV News
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Song was ‘not an invitation to rape’, Layfield jury told’

A woman who claims she was raped by her teacher at a Manchester music school has given evidence to his trial.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have used his “power and influence” to rape the then 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Giving evidence before the jury today, his accuser denied she willingly had sex in the vehicle with the defendant, who taught her at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM).

Earlier on the night of the alleged rape she agreed she performed a song called The Masochism Tango, wearing a black dress and fishnet stockings, as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the excursion .

Benjamin Myers QC, representing Layfield, said to the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?”

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, replied: “Mr Layfield said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”

She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen “a raunchy song” such as Hey Big Spender.

Mr Meyers read to the jury at Manchester Crown Court the opening lyrics of the Masochism Song by Tom Lehrer, which, he put to her, were “quite suggestive”.

The song goes: “I ache for the touch of your lips dear, But much more for the touch of your whips dear, You can raise welts like nobody else, As we dance to the Masochism Tango.” It continues: “At your command, before you here I stand, My heart is in my hand.

“It’s here that I must be, My heart entreats, just hear those savage beats, And go put on your cleats, And come and trample me.”

The complainant said to the barrister: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”

Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape.


BBC News
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Chetham music teacher ‘raped student who sang suggestive song”

A student wearing fishnet stockings sang a “suggestive song” in front of her violin teacher who raped her while on a school trip, a court heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, denies raping an 18-year-old from Chetham’s School of Music in the early 1980s.
She denied she willingly had sex in his car during a trip to Cornwall at Manchester Crown Court.
On the night of the alleged rape, she agreed she performed a song as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the trip.
‘Raunchy song’
Benjamin Myers QC, representing Mr Layfield, said to the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?”
The woman replied: “Mr Layfield said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”
She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen “a raunchy song” such as Hey Big Spender.
Mr Meyers read to the jury the opening lyrics of the song she performed – the Masochism Song by Tom Lehrer – which, he put to her, were “quite suggestive”.
The song goes: “I ache for the touch of your lips dear/But much more for the touch of your whips dear/You can raise welts like nobody else/As we dance to the Masochism Tango.”
The complainant responded: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”
Mr Myers said it would not be disputed his client pursued a series of relationships with female students and it was accepted by him that this was “inappropriate”.
The victim would have known Mr Layfield had a reputation for getting involved with female students by the time of the trip, the court was told.
Mr Myers said: “You knew perfectly well he was turning his attention towards you and you were prepared to cultivate that?”
‘Extremely influential’
The woman replied: “No.”
The jury heard Mr Layfield provided “strong alcoholic punch” on the final night of the trip.
His alleged victim is said to have escaped his attentions as she got into her sleeping bag upstairs but recalled him telling her to get up.
She next remembered getting into his car “in the middle of the night” and driving to a beach, but could not recall how she got there.
Asked why she didn’t stay in bed, the complainant said: “I wish I had. Again it’s refusing something from someone who is extremely influential.”
She told the court no violence or threats were used to get her in the car but she “did not want anything sexual to happen”.
She did not make a complaint at the time because she convinced herself it was an affair and later went on to have consensual sex with him over a six-week period, it was said.
Mr Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, also taught at Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM).
The trial continues.


Lancashire Evening Post
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Song ‘not an invitation to rape”

Wearing fishnet stockings while singing a “suggestive song” in front of her violin teacher, who is from Manchester, was not “an invitation to rape”, a sex abuse complainant has told a jury.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, is said to have used his “power and influence” to rape the then 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Giving evidence, his accuser denied she willingly had sex in the vehicle with the defendant, who taught her at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), both in Manchester.

Earlier on the night of the alleged rape she agreed she performed a song called The Masochism Tango, wearing a black dress and fishnet stockings, as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the excursion.

Benjamin Myers QC, representing Layfield, said to the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?”

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, replied: “Mr Layfield said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”

She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen “a raunchy song” such as Hey Big Spender.

Mr Meyers read to the jury at Manchester Crown Court the opening lyrics of the Masochism Song by Tom Lehrer, which, he put to her, were “quite suggestive”.

The song goes: “I ache for the touch of your lips dear, But much more for the touch of your whips dear, You can raise welts like nobody else, As we dance to the Masochism Tango.” It continues: “At your command, before you here I stand, My heart is in my hand.

“It’s here that I must be, My heart entreats, just hear those savage beats, And go put on your cleats, And come and trample me.”

The complainant said to the barrister: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”

Layfield denies rape.


Press Association
, June 2nd, 2015
Kim Pelling, ‘Song ‘Not an Invitation to Rape”

Wearing fishnet stockings while singing a “suggestive song” in front of her violin teacher was not “an invitation to rape”, a sex abuse complainant has told a jury.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have used his “power and influence” to rape the then 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s.
Giving evidence today, his accuser denied she willingly had sex in the vehicle with the defendant, who taught her at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), both in Manchester.
Earlier on the night of the alleged rape she agreed she performed a song called The Masochism Tango, wearing a black dress and fishnet stockings, as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the excursion .
Benjamin Myers QC, representing Layfield, said to the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?”
The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, replied: “Mr Layfield said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”
She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen “a raunchy song” such as Hey Big Spender.
Mr Meyers read to the jury at Manchester Crown Court the opening lyrics of the Masochism Song by Tom Lehrer, which, he put to her, were “quite suggestive”.
The song goes: “I ache for the touch of your lips dear, But much more for the touch of your whips dear, You can raise welts like nobody else, As we dance to the Masochism Tango.” It continues: “At your command, before you here I stand, My heart is in my hand.
“It’s here that I must be, My heart entreats, just hear those savage beats, And go put on your cleats, And come and trample me.”
The complainant said to the barrister: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape.


Manchester Evening News
, June 2nd, 2015
Kim Pelling, ‘Chetham’s abuse case: Alleged victim tells jury that singing in fishnet stockings and dress was ‘not an invitation to rape”

Malcolm Layfield, 63, accused of using his ‘power and influence’ to rape the then student while a teacher at the renowned music school. He denies the charge

A woman who claims she was raped by her violin teacher as a teenager sang a song for him while wearing fishnet stockings – but insists it was not ‘an invitation to rape’, a court has heard.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, is said to have used his ‘power and influence’ to rape the then student in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Giving evidence, his accuser denied she willingly had sex in the vehicle with the defendant, who taught her at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in Manchester.

Earlier on the night of the alleged rape she agreed she performed a song called The Masochism Tango, wearing a black dress and fishnet stockings, as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the excursion.

Benjamin Myers QC, representing the music teacher, said to the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?”

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, replied: “Mr Layfield said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”

She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen ‘a raunchy song’ such as Hey Big Spender.

But the complainant replied: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”

Jury members were also told that the woman was referred to as ‘one of Malcolm’s bits on the side’ after leaving Manchester.

The barrister said: “The reality is that as an 18-year-old woman you were content to get into that car, have sex and you are full of regret and anger now for what you chose to do.”

She replied: “No, that is not the case.

Mr Myers told the jury that in 2001 a ‘large number of people’ had complained that Layfield was unsuitable for his newly appointed-post as head of strings at RNCM because of his relationships with female students.

Extensive media coverage followed at the time which was ‘hostile’ to Layfield, with personal attacks on him and his family life, he said.

He said the complaints were brought to the attention of the police at the time but no prosecution followed.

Mr Layfield, who has yet to give evidence in the trial, denies rape.

Proceeding


The Guardian
, June 2nd, 2015
Helen Pidd, ‘Dressing provocatively is no rape invitation, violin teacher’s trial hears’

Woman accusing Malcolm Layfield of abusing her when she was 18 denies defence suggestion that she cultivated sexual relationship with tutor

Dressing and singing provocatively is “not an invitation to rape”, a woman has told a jury, after accusing her violin teacher of abusing her when she was 18.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, the former head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music, denies raping the woman, whom he taught for several years at Chetham’s school of music in Manchester.

He insists he had consensual sex with her in the back of his car at a summer school he organised with his wife in Cornwall in the 1980s. He was a father in his 30s at the time.

Cross-examining the complainant at Manchester crown court on Tuesday, Layfield’s barrister suggested she had cultivated a sexual relationship with him by dressing and acting provocatively and not objecting when he confided in her about an extramarital affair he was having with one of her contemporaries.

Ben Myers QC, defending, put it to her that on the night of the alleged rape she wore a provocative outfit and sang a suggestive song during an end-of-course show.

She replied angrily: “It doesn’t matter what young people sing or choose to wear. It’s not an invitation to rape.” She denied Myers’ assertion that she must have known Layfield was sexually attracted to her when he started to offer her lifts and treat her as his confidante.

Myers said: “By this time this was a man who had a reputation for getting involved with female students.” Layfield had “form”, he added.

He suggested the woman had slept with Layfield willingly at the summer camp and then again in Manchester during a six-week period, including once in her own bed, and continued to be taught by him for four years at college.

He said she had rewritten history only when she graduated and moved to a different city, but was still known in the music scene as “one of Malcolm’s bits on the side”.

During the cross-examination, Myers produced a jewellery box containing cufflinks that Layfield claims the woman bought him as a thank-you present when he finished teaching her at college. The complainant said she could not remember buying them.

She acknowledged having given an interview to the Guardian in 2013 about the abuse she said Layfield had subjected her to.

Two of the woman’s schoolfriends also gave evidence on Tuesday. One, who has remained close to the complainant, recalled attending a party at Layfield’s house several years after the alleged rape. She told the jury he said then that he still masturbated at the thought of the complainant.

The woman said that at the time of the rape it was the norm for teachers and students at Chetham’s to have sex.

The other friend, a man, said Layfield would talk openly at Chetham’s about his sexual relations with female students. During lessons he would discuss their relative attractiveness and who had big breasts, he told the jury.

The case continues.


Daily Express
, June 2nd, 2015
Jan Disley, ‘Schoolgirl wore stockings and sang ‘suggestive’ song, rape trial of teacher hears’

SINGING a “suggestive song” in front of a violin teacher while wearing fishnet stockings was not “an invitation to rape”, a court heard.

Music teacher Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have used his “power and influence” to rape a teenage student in the back of his car during a school trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Layfield, from Castlefield, Manchester, taught his alleged victim – then 18 – at the city’s Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music. He denies the rape charge.

But, giving evidence at Manchester Crown Court, his accuser rejected claims she willingly had sex with him in the vehicle.

A jury heard how earlier on the night of the alleged attack she performed a song called The Masochism Tango, wearing a black dress and fishnet stockings, as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the trip.

It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape
Alleged rape victim

Benjamin Myers QC, representing Layfield, asked the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?”

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, replied: “Mr Layfield said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”

She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen “a raunchy song” such as Hey Big Spender.

Mr Meyers read out the opening lyrics of the Masochism Song by Tom Lehrer, which, he put to her, were “quite suggestive”.

The song includes the lines: “I ache for the touch of your lips dear, But much more for the touch of your whips dear, You can raise welts like nobody else, As we dance to the Masochism Tango.”

It continues: “At your command, before you here I stand, My heart is in my hand.”

The woman told the barrister: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”

Mr Myers said it would not be disputed that his client pursued “inappropriate” relationships with female students.

The witness, giving evidence from behind a curtain, replied: “Abuse, abusive relationships.”

Mr Myers said that by the time of the Cornwall trip she would have known Layfield’s reputation and that he was developing an interest in her.

He said: “You knew perfectly well he was turning his attention towards you and you were prepared to cultivate that?”

The woman replied: “No.”

The jury has heard that Layfield provided “strong alcoholic punch” on the final night of the course staged by himself and his wife.

He is alleged to have persuaded the woman out of bed and driven her to a beach

But Mr Myers said the fact she kept on her cabaret outfit meant she did not intend to stay in bed.

He said: “Looking back, you feel you were taken advantage of?”

The woman said: “I did not want anything sexual to happen.”

She said she did not complain at the time because she convinced herself it was an affair and later went on to have consensual sex with him over a six-week period.

She said: “I twisted it in my mind to protect him, his wife. I ended up fooling myself.

She said her hatred for Layfield built up at the RNCM but she did not ask for another tutor because he had threatened to take work away from her.

The case continues.


The Daily Telegraph
, June 2nd, 2015
‘Music school teacher ‘plied student with drink and raped her”

A VIOLIN teacher improperly used his power and influence to rape an 18-year-old female student, a jury has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have committed the offence in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall after he plied his alleged victim with alcohol.
Jurors at Manchester Crown Court were told it was a case about “abuse of power” in the early 1980s by the defendant who worked at the “world renowned” Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in the city.
Peter Cadwallader, prosecuting, said: “He was a fine teacher with power and influence. He taught highly gifted students, many of whom had ambitions to go with their talent. It is alleged, in short, that he used his power and influence improperly.” Mr Cadwallader told the jury the pair did have a consensual sexual relationship which lasted for about six weeks but that the first occasion they had sex was rape.
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies rape. The case continues.


Daily Mail
, June 2nd, 2015
James Tozer, ‘Violin Teacher got Pupil, 18, Drunk before Raping Her’

A LEADING violin teacher plied a teenage pupil with whisky during an alcohol-fuelled game of sardines then forced her to have sex with him in the back of his car, a jury heard yesterday.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, abused his power as a tutor at the renowned Chetham’s School of Music to rape the 18-year-old, knowing his ability to influence her career prospects would ensure she did not speak out, it was claimed.
She only came forward two decades later in protest at his appointment as head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music, but did not want to go to court.
More than ten years on, however, she changed her mind, and the teacher went on trial yesterday accused of attacking her in the early 1980s.
Layfield admits having inappropriate’ relationships with a number of students, the jury was told, but insists his six-week affair with his accuser was consensual throughout. The promising young violinist had been taught by Layfield at the Manchester music school from her mid-teens, the court heard, leaving Chetham’s when she was 18.
But that summer she and a number of fellow pupils went to a cottage in Cornwall for a summer school organised by Layfield and his wife.
On the final day Layfield prepared a strong, alcoholic punch’, Peter Cadwallader, prosecuting, told Manchester Crown Court.
He then suggested they played the party game sardines – squeezing into confined spaces around the cottage – the court heard. Alarm bells began ringing when she realised that wherever she tended to end up, the defendant ended up, and at the same time he was plying her with whisky from a bottle that he was carrying,’ Mr Cadwallader said.
Layfield then used her befuddled’ state to persuade her to get into his car, drove her to an isolated spot and attacked her, Mr Cadwallader said.
The woman told police: There was no violence but he was using his strength. I suppose I just gave in and I’ve hated myself for that ever since.’
Mr Cadwallader said Layfield knew perfectly well’ that she was not consenting to sex, but went ahead anyway.
The following term, he said, she began studying at the Royal Northern College of Music, also in Manchester, and still taught by Layfield.
She reluctantly’ had sex with him consensually on a number of occasions, said Mr Cadwallader, adding: He had power over her progress at the college and influence over her future career within the music world.’
Layfield, of Manchester, denies one count of rape.
The trial continues.


Day 3: Wednesday June 3rd, 2015

Tweets from @helenpidd

Martin Roscoe, former head of keyboards at the Royal Northern College of Music, has just given prosecution evidence re Malcolm Layfield.

Roscoe told the jury how in 2001 he met the woman who accuses Layfield of rape, and she told him about what happened.

Malcolm Layfield is giving evidence. He says he split up from his wife in Feb 2013 when press articles surfaced about his sexual behaviour.

Layfield says he “fancied” the woman who accuses him of raping her when she was 18; says he felt she was flirting with him beforehand.

Layfield: “I still feel incredibly bad about it. I’m remorseful and regretful about what happened in these relationships…

… “The thought that this might have affected people’s lives is one that I will always carry.” Says he’s tried to “make amends” since.

Layfield says the youngest student he had a “relationship” with in the 1980s was 17. “All of the others were over 18.”



Tweets from @mrdaveguest

Music teacher accused of raping student says he had sex with her consent with her consent.

Malcolm Layfield, former head of strings at RNCM denies raping her in the early 80s when she was 18.

In statement to police Mr Layfield said he and the student had sexual relationship for several months and remained friends when it ended.

Mr Layfield says the student he’s accused of raping gave him cuff links as a present when she graduated from RNCM.

Malcolm Layfield tells court he had sexual relationships with a number of students.

Mr Layfield admits they were inappropriate relationships and he feels remorseful but says all were with overage students.

Layfield: “I look back and feel terrible about it.”

Malcolm Layfield tells court student he’s accused of raping willingly had sex in his car. “I didn’t think I was doing anything wrong”

Former music teacher Malcolm Layfield tells court about affairs with students in the 1980s and says: “I am remorseful” but he denies rape.


BBC News
, June 3rd, 2015
Dave Guest, ‘Chetham’s teacher accused of rape ‘says sex was consensual”

A music teacher accused of raping one of his students has admitted in court they had sex but said it was always consensual.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, raped the 18-year-old pupil at Manchester’s Chetham’s School of Music in the early 1980s, Manchester Crown Court heard.
Mr Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, denies a charge of rape.
He told the court he had affairs with a number of students in the 1980s but saw nothing wrong with it at the time.
But, he told the jury that looking back he now feels “terrible about it”.
‘Got her drunk’
“I am remorseful and regretful about what happened with these relationships,” he said.
It is alleged Mr Layfield raped his pupil in his car after getting her drunk during a music summer school, in the weeks after she left Chetham’s.
The defendant agreed they had had sex but insisted it was with her full consent, the court heard.
They had gone on to have a sexual relationship, which lasted for several weeks after she started studying at the Royal Northern College of Music, where he was her tutor.
The jury heard she bought him a set of antique cufflinks as a thankyou present when she graduated from the college.
The trial continues.


ITV News
, June 3rd, 2015
‘Violin teacher talks of ‘regret’ over sexual relations with pupils – as he denies rape’

A violin teacher has told a jury he was “regretful” about a string of sexual relationships with female students in his care but insisted he was not a rapist.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have used his “power and influence” to sexually assault an 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a residential music course in Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Manchester Crown Court has heard that Layfield pursued a number of relationships with students, the youngest being 17, throughout the decade.

Giving evidence in his defence, Layfield said he did not rape one of them who he taught at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), both in Manchester.

He claims the sex in his car on the Cornish trip was consensual.

Layfield told his barrister, Benjamin Myers QC, that the relationships were “highly inappropriate”.

Asked why, he replied: “Because the student/teacher relationship should not cross that area, and looking back I feel remorseful and very regretful about them. They should not have happened.”

Mr Myers asked: “How long did these relationships last?”

The defendant said: “Well I had a number and they lasted over different lengths of time.

“I was not brazen about them. I suppose I didn’t try to actively hide they were happening.”

He went on: “I feel still incredibly bad about it, I am remorseful and regretful about what happened. The thought that this may have affected people’s lives is one I will always carry.”

Layfield added he had since sought to “make amends” by helping in any way he could.

He later agreed with prosecutor Peter Cadwallader that his behaviour towards students in the 1980s was “shameful”.

Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies one count of rape.


Press Association
, June 3rd, 2015
Kim Pilling, ‘Teacher ‘regrets’ sex with students’

A violin teacher from Manchester has told a jury he was “regretful” about a string of sexual relationships with female students in his care but insisted he was not a rapist.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have used his “power and influence” to sexually assault an 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a residential music course in Cornwall in the early 1980s.
Manchester Crown Court has heard that Layfield pursued a number of relationships with students, the youngest being 17, throughout the decade
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, denies one count of rape.
Giving evidence in his defence, Layfield said he did not rape one of them who he taught at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), both in Manchester.
He claims the sex in his car on the Cornish trip was consensual.
Layfield told his barrister, Benjamin Myers QC, that the relationships were “highly inappropriate”.
Asked why, he replied: “Because the student/teacher relationship should not cross that area, and looking back I feel remorseful and very regretful about them. They should not have happened.”
Mr Myers asked: “How long did these relationships last?”
The defendant said: “Well I had a number and they lasted over different lengths of time.
“I was not brazen about them. I suppose I didn’t try to actively hide they were happening.”
He went on: “I feel still incredibly bad about it, I am remorseful and regretful about what happened. The thought that this may have affected people’s lives is one I will always carry.”
Layfield added he had since sought to “make amends” by helping in any way he could.
He later agreed with prosecutor Peter Cadwallader that his behaviour towards students in the 1980s was “shameful”.
Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies one count of rape.
It is said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.
The complainant says she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks as she continued her studies at the RNCM.
She alleges she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors.
Layfield, a former principal lead violin of the Manchester Camerata who also formed his own chamber ensemble, told the jury that he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.
On the night of the alleged rape, he said the complainant performed a song in an end-of-course cabaret which he found “suggestive” and had a “flirtatious element to it”.
He told the court: “I did think she was giving off vibes and there was a spark between us.”
The complainant went to bed but he asked a male student to get her up and she came down “perfectly willingly”, he said.
He asked her if she wanted to go for a drive and she agreed, said the defendant.
His barrister asked: “Any idea where this was leading to?”
Layfield replied: “No, not to sex. But I did fancy her and I liked the idea of being in a car with her on our own.
“We sat and talked and then I said to her do you want to get in the back of the car and she said ‘OK, I will’.”
Mr Myers asked: “Did you feel you were doing anything wrong?”
The defendant said: “I was honestly not thinking I was doing anything wrong at the time.
“We started kissing and one thing led to another and we ended up having sex.”
Mr Myers said: “After the sex, what happened?”
He replied: “We sat in the car for a while. We may have dozed off, we stayed the whole evening.
“At one point we got out of the car and watched the sunset come up.”
He said their relationship eventually “petered out” but ended amicably and he said she even presented him with a set of antique gold cufflinks when she left the RNCM.
In cross-examination, Mr Cadwallader asked the defendant: “In relation to the other students you had sexual relationships with, do you think you were doing anything wrong with them back in the 1980s?”
Layfield said: “I acted improperly and I was aware it was improper to act in that way.”
The prosecutor said: “So you knew it was wrong?”
Layfield replied: “Yes. My conduct was disgraceful at that time.
“I thought at the time it was not good but I actually went ahead and did it anyway.”
He agreed he was an “excellent and popular” teacher who was teaching “ambitious and precocious” students, and he was responsible for their safety and welfare.
Mr Cadwallader asked him: “Do you agree that you liked to be the centre of attention?”
Layfield said: “I would not describe it like that but perhaps other people would.”
The prosecutor said: “Did you like to control your students?”
“No, I do not accept that all,” Layfield said.
He denied that sex was his sole interest in the complainant.
He said: “I was quite fond of her so I refuse to debase it to that.”
Layfield also denied openly talking about the physical attributes of female pupils “behind their back” while at the college.
Mr Cadwallader said: “That was your attitude to women. Complete lack of respect.”
The defendant said: “No.”
The prosecutor said: “You saw them as sexual opportunities, you agree with that?”
Layfield said: “No. That is not how these relationships happened.”
Mr Cadwallader said: “Whenever these opportunities arose you took advantage.”
Layfield said: “They were relationships that developed with students, inappropriately.”
The prosecutor continued: “On this night in Cornwall, you crossed the line from taking advantage into rape.”
The defendant replied: “No.”
Mr Cadwallader said: “You were totally indifferent about the wishes of (the complainant), is that correct?”
Layfield said: “That is not correct.”
The prosecutor said: “You could not care less whether she was agreeing or not.”
Layfield said: “I do not accept that at all.”
Mr Cadwallader said: “She just gave in.”
Layfield said: “It was not a question of her giving in. It was a mutual thing that was happening.”
Mr Cadwallader said: “I suggest you could not care less about her feelings. You got her in the car and you used her for sex. If she agreed, good. If not, so what?
Layfield, who no longer works for Chetham’s or the RCNM, denied that was the case.
The trial continues tomorrow.


Manchester Evening News
, June 3rd, 2015
Kim Pilling, ‘Cabaret Show ‘was not an invitation to rape’; Alleged victim quizzed about song performance at trial of Chetham’s and RNCM music teacher’

A woman who claims she was raped by her violin teacher as a teenager sang a song for him while wearing fishnet stockings – but insists it was not ‘an invitation to rape’, a court has heard.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, is said to have used his ‘power and influence’ to rape the then student in the back of his car during a trip to Cornwall in the early 1980s, Manchester Crown Court was told.
Giving evidence, his accuser denied she willingly had sex in the vehicle with the defendant, who taught her at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in Manchester. Earlier on the night of the alleged rape, she agreed she performed a song called The Masochism Tango, wearing a black dress and fishnet stockings, as part of a cabaret to mark the end of the excursion.
Benjamin Myers QC, representing the music teacher, said to the complainant: “You put yourself centre stage in a highly sexualised song directed straight at Mr Layfield?” The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, replied: “Mr Lay-field said I want you to do a cabaret and I want you to sing.”
She denied trying to impress him and said she could have chosen ‘a raunchy song’ such as Hey Big Spender. The woman added: “It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.”
Jury members were also told that the woman was referred to as ‘one of Malcolm’s bits on the side’ after leaving Manchester.
Mr Myers said: “The reality is that as an 18-yearold woman you were content to get into that car, have sex and you are full of regret and anger now for what you chose to do.”
She replied: “No, that is not the case.”
Mr Myers told the jury that in 2001 a ‘large number of people’ had complained that Mr Layfield was unsuitable for his newly-appointed post as head of strings at RNCM because of his relationships with female students. Extensive media coverage followed at the time which was ‘hostile’ to Mr Layfield, with personal attacks on him and his family life, he said. He said the complaints were brought to the attention of the police at the time but no prosecution followed. Mr Layfield, who has yet to give evidence in the trial, denies rape.
Proceeding »


ITV News
, June 3rd, 2015
‘Violin teacher got girl drunk on ‘strong’ punch before rape – court told’

It is said violin teacher Malcolm Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.

The complainant says she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks as she continued her studies at the RNCM.

She alleges she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors.

Layfield, a former principal lead violin of the Manchester Camerata who also formed his own chamber ensemble, told the jury that he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.


‘Teacher didn’t think he was ‘doing anything wrong’ by having sex with teenage pupil’

On the night of the alleged rape, Layfield said the complainant performed a song in an end-of-course cabaret which he found “suggestive” and had a “flirtatious element to it”.

He told the court: “I did think she was giving off vibes and there was a spark between us.”

The complainant went to bed but he asked a male student to get her up and she came down “perfectly willingly”, he said.

He asked her if she wanted to go for a drive and she agreed, said the defendant.

His barrister asked: “Any idea where this was leading to?”

Layfield replied: “No, not to sex. But I did fancy her and I liked the idea of being in a car with her on our own.

“We sat and talked and then I said to her do you want to get in the back of the car and she said ‘OK, I will’.”

Mr Myers asked: “Did you feel you were doing anything wrong?”

The defendant said: “I was honestly not thinking I was doing anything wrong at the time.

“We started kissing and one thing led to another and we ended up having sex.”

Mr Myers said: “After the sex, what happened?”

He replied: “We sat in the car for a while. We may have dozed off, we stayed the whole evening.

“At one point we got out of the car and watched the sunset come up.”

He said their relationship eventually “petered out” but ended amicably and he said she even presented him with a set of antique gold cufflinks when she left the RNCM.


The Guardian
, June 3rd, 2015
Helen Pidd, ‘Music teacher accused of raping student regrets having sex with her and others’

Malcolm Layfield says his behaviour towards students in 1980s was ‘shameful’ but insists he did not rape the student after teaching her at Chetham’s school

A violin teacher accused of raping a student from a top music school said he regretted having sex with her and other pupils, saying he now viewed his behaviour as highly inappropriate.

But Malcolm Layfield, former head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music, insists he did not rape the student, then 18, after teaching her at Chetham’s school of music in Manchester.

The 63-year-old is said to have used his “power and influence” to sexually assault her in the back of his car during a residential music course in Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Giving evidence in his defence at Manchester crown court on Wednesday, Layfield said the sex on the Cornish trip was consensual.

He told the jury that the complainant had been “giving off vibes” to suggest she found him attractive, talking of “sparks” and “sexual chemistry” between them. He said they had a short but exciting relationship following the Cornish encounter. “I suppose I was flattered, being an older man having someone like that for a lover. But the inappropriateness did not strike me then.”

The complainant had previously told the court she found Layfield “disgusting” and never fancied him, despite having a sexual relationship with him for six weeks after the alleged rape.

She said he abused his power to have sex with her and stopped her getting professional work as a musician when their relationship fizzled out. He denied this claim, saying she did not get more work in a particular ensemble because the other players in the group felt she was “not up to it”.

Layfield also denied her claim to have plied her with whiskey during a game of the game sardines, which she said preceded the alleged rape. By his account, they played sardines on a different night.

The jury has heard that Layfield pursued a number of relationships with students, the youngest being 17, throughout the 1980s. Layfield told his barrister, Benjamin Myers QC, that he now viewed the relationships as highly inappropriate.

Asked why, he replied: “Because the student-teacher relationship should not cross that area, and looking back I feel remorseful and very regretful about them. They should not have happened.”

He added: “I feel still incredibly bad about it. I am remorseful and regretful about what happened. The thought that this may have affected people’s lives is one I will always carry and what I have tried to do since then is to make amends as much as I can.”

He later agreed with prosecutor Peter Cadwallader that his behaviour towards students in the 1980s was “shameful”. He also said he regretted lying to his wife, who was up making breakfast for their young children when he returned at around 6.30am after having sex with the complainant in the car at a nearby beach.

The jury heard that the couple divorced last year. They separated in February 2013 after the Guardian published claims about his sexual behaviour with the complainant, Layfield said.

The case continues.


Day 4: Thursday, June 4th, 2015


Western Morning News
, June 4th, 2015
WMNAGreenwood, ‘Violin teacher accused of sex attack on student in Cornwall’

A violin teacher accused of sexually assaulting a teenager in the South West has told a jury he was “regretful” about a string of sexual relationships with female students in his care but insisted he was not a rapist.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, is said to have used his “power and influence” to sexually assault an 18-year-old student in the back of his car during a residential music course in Cornwall in the early 1980s.

Manchester Crown Court has heard that Layfield pursued a number of relationships with students, the youngest being 17, throughout the decade

Giving evidence in his defence, Layfield said he did not rape one of them who he taught at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), both in Manchester.

He claims the sex in his car on the Cornish trip was consensual.

Layfield told his barrister, Benjamin Myers QC, that the relationships were “highly inappropriate”.

Asked why, he replied: “Because the student/teacher relationship should not cross that area, and looking back I feel remorseful and very regretful about them. They should not have happened.”

Mr Myers asked: “How long did these relationships last?”

The defendant said: “Well I had a number and they lasted over different lengths of time. I was not brazen about them. I suppose I didn’t try to actively hide they were happening.”

He went on: “I feel still incredibly bad about it, I am remorseful and regretful about what happened. The thought that this may have affected people’s lives is one I will always carry.”

Layfield added he had since sought to “make amends” by helping in any way he could. He later agreed with prosecutor Peter Cadwallader that his behaviour towards students in the 1980s was “shameful”.

Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, Manchester, denies one count of rape.

It is said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.

The complainant says she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks as she continued her studies at the RNCM.

She alleges she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors.

Layfield, a former principal lead violin of the Manchester Camerata who also formed his own chamber ensemble, told the jury that he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.

On the night of the alleged rape, he said the complainant performed a song in an end-of-course cabaret which he found “suggestive” and had a “flirtatious element to it”.

He told the court: “I did think she was giving off vibes and there was a spark between us.”

The complainant went to bed but he asked a male student to get her up and she came down “perfectly willingly”, he said. He asked her if she wanted to go for a drive and she agreed, said the defendant.

His barrister asked: “Any idea where this was leading to?”

Layfield replied: “No, not to sex. But I did fancy her and I liked the idea of being in a car with her on our own. We sat and talked and then I said to her do you want to get in the back of the car and she said ‘OK, I will’.”

Mr Myers asked: “Did you feel you were doing anything wrong?”

The defendant said: “I was honestly not thinking I was doing anything wrong at the time. We started kissing and one thing led to another and we ended up having sex.”

Mr Myers said: “After the sex, what happened?”

He replied: “We sat in the car for a while. We may have dozed off, we stayed the whole evening. At one point we got out of the car and watched the sunset come up.”

He said their relationship eventually “petered out” but ended amicably and he said she even presented him with a set of antique gold cufflinks when she left the RNCM.

In cross-examination, Mr Cadwallader asked the defendant: “In relation to the other students you had sexual relationships with, do you think you were doing anything wrong with them back in the 1980s?”

Layfield said: “I acted improperly and I was aware it was improper to act in that way.”

The prosecutor said: “So you knew it was wrong?”

Layfield replied: “Yes. My conduct was disgraceful at that time. I thought at the time it was not good but I actually went ahead and did it anyway.”

The trial continues.


The Guardian
, June 4th, 2015
Helen Pidd, ‘Inappropriate sex with students did not make music teacher a rapist, court hears’

Barrister for Malcolm Layfield, who taught at Chetham’s in Manchester, urges jury to distinguish between morally wrong and criminal behaviour

Having inappropriate sexual relationships with students does not make a teacher a rapist, a jury hearing a case against a violin tutor has heard.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, has admitted behaving “shamefully” by having sex with students from Chetham’s school of music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM). But he denies raping one of them in the back of his car on a summer course in Cornwall in the 1980s, when she was 18 and he was a married father-of-two in his 30s.

Ben Myers QC, defending Layfield, told the jury at Manchester crown court that it had been “open season” on his client ever since a campaign in 2001 tried to prevent him becoming head of strings at the RNCM.

The complainant was among a large number of people who wrote to the college to urge them not to appoint Layfield to the prestigious position, the court had heard.

Addressing the jury in his closing speech, Myers suggested the complainant had brought the case out of regret at becoming known as a “bit-on-the-side” for Layfield, who had a reputation for affairs with students in Manchester.

The woman had previously told the court she had a six-week consensual relationship with Layfield after the alleged rape because she felt she “had to”. But she accused him of threatening to sabotage her career as a musician if she did not submit to his wishes – a claim he has firmly denied, saying he had negligible influence on the careers of his pupils.

“We cannot convict a man of rape because a woman has come to bitterly regret her actions when she was 18,” said Myers.

The barrister urged the jury to distinguish between what was morally wrong and what was criminal. “There is a difference between wrong and unlawful, between wrong and rape. It doesn’t follow that one proves the other,” he said, accusing the prosecution of using a “good dollop of prejudice” as “Polyfilla” to mask holes in their case.

In his closing speech, Peter Cadwallader, prosecuting, said Layfield had an “unpleasant, even frightening, dark side.”

He said Layfield treated his female students as “little more than sex objects”, recalling how one witness claimed Layfield told her years after the alleged rape that he still masturbated at the thought of the complainant’s nipples. Another former student alleged that Layfield would openly discuss the breast sizes of his female charges.

In his speech, Myers suggested Layfield’s female students perhaps also viewed him as merely a “sex object”.

During the trial Layfield testified that he thought the complainant had flirted with him by performing a risque cabaret song with her classmates on the night of the alleged rape, recalling that she was dressed in fishnet tights and a black dress. This, Cadwallader told the jury, came uncomfortably close to the “old idea that a woman wearing a short skirt is asking for it”.

The truth, said Cadwallader, is that Layfield behaved recklessly by having sex with the woman whether she wanted to or not. Warning the jury that “submission is not consent” he said of Layfield: “In colloquial terms, he couldn’t care less. He was indifferent to her attitude towards it. And that, the crown says, is rape.”

Before the barristers delivered their closing speeches, the defence called their final witnesses.

Louise Jones, who studied violin at Chetham’s and the RNCM with Layfield, described him as a “great inspiration”. She said the Cornwall summer schools were a “real highlight” of her time studying music. Asked whether Layfield had ever behaved inappropriately to her, she said no, and recalled once babysitting for Layfield’s son and staying the night at their house.

Amanda Milne, a former cellist who performed in orchestras and ensembles directed by Layfield at Chetham’s and the RNCM, described him as “generous and an extremely good teacher”.

A character reference from Dr Colin Beeson, former vice principal of the RNCM, was read to the jury. Beeson said Layfield had been one of the most effective department heads at the college and was an “inspirational leader” who helped him when he was going through a divorce.

The judge is due to sum up the case on Monday.


The court did not sit on Friday June 5th.


Day 5: Monday June 8th, 2015

Tweets from @helenpidd

Malcolm Layfield has been found not guilty of rape. More details to follow.

The jury hearing the rape case against Malcolm Layfield only retired to consider their verdict at 12.48 today. Very quick.


Press Association
, June 8th, 2015

Layfield’s son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery as the verdict was returned.
It was said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.
The complainant, who he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.
She alleged she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, Manchester Crown Court heard
Father-of-two Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castleford, Manchester, told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.
He said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was “a mutual thing that happened”.
The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it later “fizzled out”.
Following the verdict, Layfield’s solicitor Matthew Claughton, from Olliers Solicitors, said: “Today’s unanimous verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”


Daily Mail
, June 8th, 2015
Press Association, ‘Violin teacher cleared of rape’

A violin teacher has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, had denied the Crown’s allegation that he used his “power and influence” to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.
The defendant admitted he pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s which his trial heard were said to be “common knowledge” in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield.
But the former part-time tutor at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) denied he “crossed the line” on one occasion during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall.
A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Layfield, who showed no emotion as the not guilty verdict on one count of rape was returned.
Layfield’s son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery as the verdict was returned.
It was said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.
The complainant, who he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.
She alleged she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, Manchester Crown Court heard
Father-of-two Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castleford, Manchester, told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.
He said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was “a mutual thing that happened”.
The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it later “fizzled out”.
Following the verdict, Layfield’s solicitor Matthew Claughton, from Olliers Solicitors, said: “Today’s unanimous verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”
Layfield was a popular, gifted teacher at both prestigious establishments and an acclaimed violinist himself who performed with the Manchester Camerata orchestra and led his own Goldberg Ensemble.
He told his rape trial that he was “regretful” about the “shameful” consensual relationships he had with female students, with the youngest aged 17.
The complainant was among a number of women who came forward in the wake of the 2013 conviction of Chetham’s former music director Michael Brewer to report historical sexual abuse.
Brewer was jailed for six years after he was found guilty of indecently assaulting ex-pupil Frances Andrade, 48, more than 30 years ago when she was 14 and 15.
Mrs Andrade killed herself at her home in Guildford, Surrey, a week after giving evidence against him.
Two men were sentenced last year as part of the investigation launched by Greater Manchester Police following Brewer’s conviction.
Conductor Nicholas Smith, 66, was jailed for eight months after he admitted sexually assaulting a 15-year-old Chetham’s pupil in the 1970s.
While double bass teacher Duncan McTier was handed a three-month jail term, suspended for two years, after he pleaded guilty to sexual assaults against three former pupils he taught at the RNCM and Purcell School of Music in Harrow.
Before the start of Layfield’s trial, his barrister, Benjamin Myers QC, applied for a ban on reporting his client’s identity unless he was convicted of the offence.
Despite publicity of his arrest and his subsquent charging, Layfield argued there was “no public interest” in identifying him in the event of his acquittal.
It was said that the “protracted investigation” had been “painful” for him and his family, and that if cleared he should have the same anonymity as his accuser.
Judge Michael Henshell swiftly dismissed the application and said he was not convinced the general principle of open justice should be departed from.
Later giving evidence, Layfield admitted to a number of “inappropriate” relationships he conducted with female students in the 1980s while he was married.
He had confessed to those affairs previously in 2002, shortly after a flood of complaints came in to the RNCM on his appointment as head of strings.
Layfield quit the college following the publicity surrounding Brewer’s conviction.
He is now divorced and is not presently working, the court heard.


Slipped Disc
, June 8th, 2015
Norman Lebrecht, ‘Breaking: Chetham’s Rape Trial ends in Non-Guilty Verdict’

Malcolm Layfield, former violin teacher at Chetham’s School of Music and head of strings at RNCM, has been found not guilty of rape, according to journalist tweets from Manchester Crown Court. Te jury took less than two hours to reach their verdict.
Layfield, now 63, had insisted his sexual relationship with the teenager had been consensual, as it had been in his relations with other students around the same time, in the 1980s.
More here.


The Guardian
, June 8th, 2015
Helen Pidd and Charlie Spargo, ‘Chetham’s violin teacher found not guilty of rape’

Malcolm Layfield, 63, admitted to shameful behaviour with several female students but said sex with 18-year-old in 1980s was consensual

A former violin teacher accused of abusing his power and influence to prey on students has been found not guilty of rape.

Malcolm Layfield, the former head of strings at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), was cleared of raping one of his students from Chetham’s school of music in Manchester in the 1980s when she was 18 and he was a married father in his 30s.

A jury at Manchester crown court cleared the 63-year-old after being told during the trial that, despite having a reputation as an excellent violin teacher, he had an “unpleasant, even frightening, dark side”.

Peter Cadwallader, prosecuting, said Layfield had treated his female students as “little more than sex objects”.

Layfield admitted behaving “shamefully” by having sex with a number of students from Chetham’s and the RNCM. But he denied raping one of them in the back of his car on a summer course in Cornwall in the 1980s after allegedly plying her with whiskey.

The sex was consensual, he said, claiming the victim flirted with him by wearing fishnet stockings and a black dress and performing a risque cabaret song with two classmates. She denied any flirtation, saying: “It doesn’t matter what young people sing or choose to wear. It’s not an invitation to rape.”

The investigation into Layfield began in early 2013 after the conviction of one of his contemporaries at Chetham’s, Michael Brewer, the school’s former head of music.

Brewer was found guilty of sexually abusing a 14-year-old pupil. His victim, Frances Andrade, killed herself after giving evidence against him. In a text message to a friend before her death she said she felt she had been “raped all over again” after a bruising encounter in the witness box with Brewer’s barrister.

Speaking after the verdict, Matthew Claughton, Layfield’s solicitor, said after the verdict: “Today’s unanimous not guilty verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield, who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”

During Brewer’s trial, Andrade talked of how inappropriate teacher-pupil relationships at Chetham’s were rife, mentioning Layfield as one of the tutors involved.

In 2002 Andrade was one of a large number of musicians – including the complainant in Layfield’s case – who campaigned to stop him being appointed to the prestigious position of head of strings at the RNCM.

Edward Gregson, then principal of the college, replied to Andrade in a letter, saying: “All the occurrences to which our attention has been drawn happened at least eight years ago, and in many cases much longer.

“In our discussions with Mr Layfield he has admitted, and has expressed his regret for, all the occurrences to which our attention had been drawn, and indeed some others of which we were not previously aware, which also date back eight years or more.”

Layfield resigned from the RNCM in February 2013 after the Guardian published a dossier of correspondence documenting the controversy surrounding his 2002 appointment.

He quit, saying his position had become untenable. Later that year he was arrested.

At the start of his trial last Monday, Layfield tried to prevent reporting of the case.

His barrister, Ben Myers QC, asked the judge to impose reporting restrictions preventing the media from naming Layfield as the defendant. Complainants in sex cases are granted automatic anonymity; Myers argued his client deserved the same, saying there was “no public interest” in identifying him in the event of his acquittal.

It was said that the “protracted investigation” had been “painful” for Layfield and his family, and that if cleared he should have the same anonymity as his accuser. Judge Michael Henshell swiftly dismissed the application and said he was not convinced the general principle of open justice should be departed from.

Layfield was the first Manchester music teacher to opt for a jury trial since Brewer’s conviction.

Two other tutors charged as part of Operation Kiso, Greater Manchester police’s investigation into abuse at music schools in the city, pleaded guilty without a trial.

Last November double bassist Duncan McTier was given a three-month jail term, suspended for two years, after admitting to two counts of indecent assault and one count of attempted indecent assault against young women from the RNCM and Purcell school in Hertfordshire in the 1980s and 1990s.

In September the conductor Nicolas Smith was sentenced to eight months in prison after admitting sexually assaulting a 15-year-old Chetham’s pupil in the 1970s.


BBC News
, June 8th, 2015
‘Malcolm Layfield: Chetham’s music teacher cleared of rape’

Malcolm Layfield, 63, denied claims he had used his “power and influence” to assault her in the back of his car.
He admitted he had pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s.
But the former violin teacher at Manchester’s Chetham’s School of Music denied he “crossed the line” during a summer school in Cornwall.
A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Mr Layfield.
‘Gave in’
Mr Layfield had been accused of driving the woman in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and raping her while she was drunk on an alcoholic punch made by him.
The complainant, who had been taught by Mr Layfield at Chetham’s and Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), said she “gave in” and went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.
She said she had been under Mr Layfield’s “influence and power” as he threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors.
Mr Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers”. He said she had willingly got into his car and that sex was “mutual”.
Mr Layfield’s solicitor, Matthew Claughton, said the verdict had come as a “huge relief” to his client.
Chethams School of Music
Chetham’s is one of the country’s best-known music schools
Mr Layfield, who performed with the Manchester Camerata orchestra and led his own Goldberg Ensemble, told the trial that he was “regretful” about the “shameful” consensual relationships he had with female students, with the youngest aged 17.
The complainant was among a number of women who came forward to report historical sexual abuse after the 2013 conviction of Chetham’s former music director Michael Brewer.
Brewer was jailed for six years after he was found guilty of indecently assaulting ex-pupil Frances Andrade, 48, more than 30 years ago when she was 14 and 15.
Mrs Andrade killed herself at her home in Guildford, Surrey, a week after giving evidence.
Two men were sentenced last year as part of an investigation launched by Greater Manchester Police following Brewer’s conviction.
Conductor Nicholas Smith, 66, was jailed for eight months after he admitted sexually assaulting a 15-year-old Chetham’s pupil in the 1970s.
Double bass teacher Duncan McTier also pleaded guilty to sexual assaults against three former pupils he taught at the RNCM and Purcell School of Music in Harrow, north-west London.
Before the trial, the judge dismissed an application to ban reporting Mr Layfield’s identity unless he was convicted of the offence.


Manchester Evening News
, June 8th, 2015
Kim Pilling, ‘News Greater Manchester News Courts. Malcolm Layfield cleared: Former Chetham’s School of Music teacher found not guilty of raping former pupil’

Mr Layfield, 63, had denied the Crown’s allegation that he used his “power and influence” to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.

A violin teacher who worked at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, had denied the allegation that he used his “power and influence” to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.

The defendant admitted he pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s which his trial heard were said to be “common knowledge” in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield.

But the former part-time tutor denied he “crossed the line” on one occasion during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Layfield, who showed no emotion as the not guilty verdict on one count of rape was returned.

Layfield’s son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery as the verdict was returned.

It was said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.

The complainant, who he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.

She alleged she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, Manchester Crown Court heard

Father-of-two Layfield told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.

He said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was “a mutual thing that happened”.

The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it later “fizzled out”.

Following the verdict, Layfield’s solicitor Matthew Claughton, from Olliers Solicitors, said: “Today’s unanimous verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”


Express and Star
, June 8th, 2015
‘Violin teacher cleared of rape’

A violin teacher has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, had denied the Crown’s allegation that he used his “power and influence” to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.

The defendant admitted he pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s which his trial heard were said to be “common knowledge” in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield.

But the former part-time tutor at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) denied he “crossed the line” on one occasion during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Layfield, who showed no emotion as the not guilty verdict on one count of rape was returned.

Layfield’s son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery as the verdict was returned.

It was said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.

The complainant, who he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.

She alleged she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, Manchester Crown Court heard

Father-of-two Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castleford, Manchester, told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.

He said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was “a mutual thing that happened”.

The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it later “fizzled out”.

Following the verdict, Layfield’s solicitor Matthew Claughton, from Olliers Solicitors, said: “Today’s unanimous verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”

Layfield was a popular, gifted teacher at both prestigious establishments and an acclaimed violinist himself who performed with the Manchester Camerata orchestra and led his own Goldberg Ensemble.

He told his rape trial that he was “regretful” about the “shameful” consensual relationships he had with female students, with the youngest aged 17.

The complainant was among a number of women who came forward in the wake of the 2013 conviction of Chetham’s former music director Michael Brewer to report historical sexual abuse.

Brewer was jailed for six years after he was found guilty of indecently assaulting ex-pupil Frances Andrade, 48, more than 30 years ago when she was 14 and 15.

Mrs Andrade killed herself at her home in Guildford, Surrey, a week after giving evidence against him.

Two men were sentenced last year as part of the investigation launched by Greater Manchester Police following Brewer’s conviction.

Conductor Nicholas Smith, 66, was jailed for eight months after he admitted sexually assaulting a 15-year-old Chetham’s pupil in the 1970s.

While double bass teacher Duncan McTier was handed a three-month jail term, suspended for two years, after he pleaded guilty to sexual assaults against three former pupils he taught at the RNCM and Purcell School of Music in Harrow.

Before the start of Layfield’s trial, his barrister, Benjamin Myers QC, applied for a ban on reporting his client’s identity unless he was convicted of the offence.

Despite publicity of his arrest and his subsquent charging, Layfield argued there was “no public interest” in identifying him in the event of his acquittal.

It was said that the “protracted investigation” had been “painful” for him and his family, and that if cleared he should have the same anonymity as his accuser.

Judge Michael Henshell swiftly dismissed the application and said he was not convinced the general principle of open justice should be departed from.

Later giving evidence, Layfield admitted to a number of “inappropriate” relationships he conducted with female students in the 1980s while he was married.

He had confessed to those affairs previously in 2002, shortly after a flood of complaints came in to the RNCM on his appointment as head of strings.

Layfield quit the college following the publicity surrounding Brewer’s conviction.

He is now divorced and is not presently working, the court heard.


International Business Times
, June 8th, 2015
Samantha Payne, ‘Manchester: Former violin teacher at Chetham’s School of Music cleared of raping 18-year-old pupil’

A former teacher at one of the UK’s most prominent music schools has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old pupil in the 1980s.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, denied using his “power and influence” to sexually assault the woman after allegedly getting her drunk during a music summer school in Cornwall.

The complainant said she “gave in” and then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks out of fear he would take work opportunities away from her.

The former violin teacher at Chetham’s School of Music told Manchester Crown Court sex had been consensual with her and he was not in the position to “destroy people’s careers”. He also admitted to a number of other consensual sexual relationships with students in the 1980s, which was reportedly common knowledge at the time within musical circles in the area.

A jury took less than 90 minutes to have him acquitted of the offence.


Macclesfield Express
, June 8th, 2015
Rhiannon McDowell, ‘Violin teacher cleared of raping student in the 80s’

Malcolm Layfield, formerly of Higher Poynton, was acquitted during a hearing at Manchester Crown Court.

A violin teacher has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, formerly of Higher Poynton and who worked at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, denied the allegation that he used his “power and influence” to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.

The defendant admitted he pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s which his trial heard were said to be “common knowledge” in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield.

But the former part-time tutor denied he “crossed the line” on one occasion during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Layfield, who showed no emotion as the not guilty verdict on one count of rape was returned.

Layfield’s son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery as the verdict was returned.

It was said Layfield, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.

The complainant, who he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.

She alleged she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, Manchester Crown Court heard

Father-of-two Layfield told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.

He said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was “a mutual thing that happened”.

The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it later “fizzled out”.

Following the verdict, Layfield’s solicitor Matthew Claughton, from Olliers Solicitors, said: “Today’s unanimous verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”


Classical Music
, June 8th, 2015
Katy Wright, ‘Former Chetham’s teacher found not guilty of rape’

Former violin teacher Malcolm Layfield, 63, has been found not guilty of raping a former pupil.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Layfield, who had been accused of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s.

He admitted he had pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students througout the 1980s, but denied that he had ‘crossed the line’ during a summer school in Cornwall.

Layfield had been accused of driving the woman to an isolated spot in the middle of the night and raping her while she was drunk. The complainant said she ‘gave in’ and went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.

The former violin teacher previously worked at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music, refuted the Crown’s allegation that he used his ‘power and influence’ to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.

Layfield’s solicitor, Matthew Claughton, said the verdict had some as a ‘huge relief’ to his client.

Sky News, June 8th, 2015
‘Teacher Cleared Of Raping Student In Car’

The former part-time tutor admitted a number of “inappropriate” consensual sexual relationships with students in the 1980s.

A violin teacher has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old female student in the back of his car in the early 1980s.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, showed no emotion as he was acquitted of one count of rape but his son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery when the verdict was read out.

The former part-time tutor at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) admitted a number of “inappropriate” consensual sexual relationships with students in the 1980s while he was married.

The relationships were said to be “common knowledge” in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield, his trial at Manchester Crown Court heard.

However, he denied he used his “power and influence” and “crossed the line” on one occasion during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall.

It was said Layfield drove his victim – allegedly drunk on “strong alcoholic punch” made by the defendant – in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.

The complainant, who he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM, claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.

She alleged she was under his “influence and power” as Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, the court was told.

Layfield said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was “a mutual thing that happened”.

The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it later “fizzled out”.

The father-of-two, of Castle Quay, Castleford, Manchester, told the jury he was not in a position to “destroy people’s careers” and neither did he encourage students to get drunk.

Layfield was a popular, gifted teacher at both prestigious establishments and an acclaimed violinist himself who performed with the Manchester Camerata orchestra and led his own Goldberg Ensemble, the court heard.

He told his rape trial he was “regretful” about the “shameful” consensual relationships he had with female students, with the youngest aged 17.

Layfield is now divorced and is not presently working, the court heard.


The Times
, June 9th, 2015
Fiona Hamilton, ‘Violin teacher cleared of raping pupil’

A former violin teacher at the prestigious Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester was cleared yesterday of raping an 18-year-old student.
Malcolm Layfield, who also worked at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), was accused of using his “power and influence” to attack the teenager in the early 1980s.
Mr Layfield, 63, admitted that he had pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the decade. His trial was told that these were “common knowledge” in classical music circles. He denied raping one of the students during a summer music school he ran in Cornwall.
Mr Layfield, of Castlefield, Manchester, was accused of plying the teenager with a “strong alcoholic punch” before driving her to an isolated spot to have sex in the middle of the night. He said that they had consensual sex. The complainant, whom he taught at Chetham’s and the RNCM, claimed that she “gave in” and then had consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.
She alleged that she was under his “influence and power” because Mr Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors.
A jury at Manchester crown court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Mr Layfield.


Manchester Evening News
, June 9th, 2015
Chris Osuh, ‘Violin teacher cleared of raping student, 18, in the back of his car; Chetham’s and RNCM tutor told court that sex with student was consensual.’

AVIOLIN teacher who worked at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s. Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, had denied using his ‘power and influence’ to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.
Mr Layfield admitted that he pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s.
His trial heard they were said to be ‘common knowledge’ in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield. But the former part-time tutor denied he ‘crossed the line’ on one occasion during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall.
A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Mr Layfield, who showed no emotion as the not guilty verdict on one count of rape was returned.
Mr Layfield’s son and daughter burst into tears in the public gallery as the verdict was returned.
It was said Mr Layfield drove his alleged victim in the middle of the night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her ‘come what may’.
It was claimed that the complainant was drunk on ‘strong alcoholic punch’ made by Mr Layfield at the time.
The complainant, who Mr Layfield taught at Chetham’s and the Royal Northern College of Music, claimed she ‘gave in’ at the time – but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.
She alleged she was under his ‘influence and power’ as Mr Layfield threatened to take work opportunities away from her if she changed tutors, Manchester Crown Court heard.
Father-of-two Mr Lay-field told the jury he was not in a position to ‘destroy people’s careers’.
Neither did he encourage students to get drunk, the court was told.
He said she willingly got into his car and that sex followed between the pair which was ‘a mutual thing that happened’.
The pair went on to have a sexual relationship, he said, before it ‘fizzled out’.
Following the verdict, Mr Layfield’s solicitor Matthew Claughton, from Olliers Solicitors, said: “Today’s unanimous verdict comes as a huge relief to Malcolm Layfield who would like to thank friends, family and his legal team and all those who have supported him over the last two years.”
‘Today’s verdict comes as a huge relief ‘


The Telegraph
, June 9th, 2015
‘Chetham’s violin teacher cleared of raping student’

A VIOLIN teacher who worked at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Northern College of Music has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old student in the early 1980s.
Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Manchester, denied the allegation that he used his “power and influence” to commit the offence against the teenage girl in the back of his car.
Mr Layfield admitted he had a number of consensual sexual relationships with students throughout the 1980s, which his trial heard were “common knowledge” in classical musical circles in Manchester and further afield.
But the former part-time tutor denied he “crossed the line” during a summer music school he staged in Cornwall. A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Mr Layfield. It had been alleged in court that Mr Layfield drove the girl – who was said to have been drunk on strong punch made by the defendant – at night to an isolated spot and was determined to have sex with her “come what may”.
The complainant, who had been his pupil at Chetham’s and the Royal Northern College of Music, both in Manchester, claimed she “gave in” but then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.
She alleged she was under his “influence and power”.
Mr Layfield told the jury the teenager willingly got into his car and that the sexual intercourse which followed was “a mutual thing that happened”.


Daily Mail
, June 9th, 2015
Tom Rawstorne and James Tozer, ‘Preying on his Prodigies’

WITH his mop of ginger hair and thick-rimmed spectacles, music teacher Malcolm Layfield hardly cut the figure of a stereotypical Lothario. But when it came to satisfying his lust for young, impressionable girls, it was his power, not his appearance, that mattered.
While in his 30s, Layfield slept with half-a-dozen or so of his pupils, the youngest of them 17. Alcohol would generally be first consumed, after which sex would follow often in the distinctly unromantic setting of the back seat of his car.
The fact that Layfield was married didn’t stop him. If anything, it seemed to add an extra frisson to his philandering.
On one occasion, it was claimed that he had sex with a teenager while his wife and two young children were elsewhere in the house, though Layfield denies this.
Nor was the music master put off by the fact the girls he slept with happened to be his pupils.
A violin teacher at Manchester’s world-famous Chetham’s School of Music, time and again he abused his position for his own sexual gratification.
Details of Layfield’s predatory behaviour which he admitted was shameful’ were outlined last week during a trial at Manchester Crown Court. Now 63, he was accused of raping one of those teenage pupils in the early Eighties. She alleged that having plied her with alcohol, he pounced on her in the back of his car.
Layfield claimed the sex was consensual and yesterday the jury agreed, finding him not guilty.
But this is far from the end of it. Not only is the alleged victim planning to sue Chetham’s for failing to safeguard its young pupils, but the trial has brought to light yet more evidence of the shocking goings-on at the school, which is charged with nurturing Britain’s most brilliant musical minds.
The case also raises more questions as to why the authorities took so long to investigate the allegations, despite many opportunities.
What the jury was not told about were the links between the Layfield case and that of Michael Brewer, another former Chetham’s teacher. Brewer was jailed for six years in 2013 after being convicted of indecently assaulting Frances Andrade, also a pupil, when she was 14 and 15.
During Brewer’s trial, following a particularly traumatic cross-examination, mother-of-four Mrs Andrade, a brilliant violinist, took her own life. But not before she had told the court of her concerns about not just Brewer, but Malcolm Layfield, too.
She claimed that everyone knew about Layfield’s illicit relationships, but that Brewer the all-powerful head of music had hidden’ what was going on because he was compromised by his own abuse of her.
She also revealed that in 2002 she had reported her concerns about Layfield to police and to the college where he was then working, but no action was taken.
Only after Mrs Andrade’s death, and the publicity that followed it, would the accusations against him be investigated. Inspired by Mrs Andrade, a number of female ex-pupils, including the one who accused him of rape, came forward to voice their concerns about Layfield.
And while he may have been acquitted, he has not got off scot-free. As well as having been forced to quit his latest job, he has also been divorced by his long-suffering wife.
What he did all those years ago was always going to come back and bite him,’ said a former pupil. The only shame is it has taken so long.’
Malcolm Layfield was a gifted child from a troubled background. His father, John, killed himself aged 38, and left a suicide note which, said the coroner at his inquest, dealt with difficulties of a private nature’.
While at grammar school in County Durham, the young Malcolm took up the violin and then joined the Royal Scottish Academy Of Music and Drama, where he met his future wife, Cathie, a cellist.
He then took a part-time job in Manchester, teaching violin at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), then, in 1977, also began working at Chetham’s.
The Layfields married the same year and went on to have a son, who is now a policeman, and a daughter.
As well as teaching, Layfield performed in leading orchestras and founded the Goldberg Ensemble, a string ensemble that performs to worldwide critical acclaim.
In other words, this was a man who was going places particularly when seen through the wide eyes of his pupils. Chetham’s is the largest specialist music school in the country, with some 300 pupils, boys and girls aged eight to 18, most of whom are boarders. At the time Brewer and Layfield taught there, it would appear normal rules did not apply.
I wouldn’t have wanted to be a girl at Chet’s,’ a former pupil told the Mail. There were girls getting pregnant by other pupils at 14 it was considered perfectly normal.’
And it wasn’t just the pupils. Teaching was on a one-to-one basis, the school a hothouse where young musicians laid their souls bare’ to impress their teachers.
For Layfield, the temptations were too hard to resist. Indeed, such was his reputation, he was known as Malcolm Lay-A-Lot’, while his colleague was known as Brewer The Screwer’.
During the court case, Layfield admitted to a number of inappropriate relationships’ with pupils. In the past, he has admitted there were at least six. These, he claims, involved girls no younger than 17.
The woman at the centre of this trial was one such pupil, joining Chetham’s at 14.
Malcolm went out of his way to cultivate a relationship where he was the mentor, the father figure,’ she said.
The incident she claimed was rape took place in the early Eighties during a course in Cornwall run by Layfield and his wife. One evening, Layfield laid on a vodka punch for the pupils whom he then encouraged to take part in a risqué cabaret. Very drunk, she said she retreated upstairs and got into her sleeping bag, only to be told to come back downstairs. The prosecution claimed Layfield knew she was inebriated and took advantage of her.
He drove her in his black Lancia to an isolated spot, got into the back of the car and had sex with her.
There was no violence, but he was using his strength,’ she said. I suppose I just gave in and I have hated myself for that ever since.’
In his defence, Layfield claimed the sex was consensual and that he didn’t recall his pupil appearing to be drunk. He claimed that during the earlier cabaret, the girl had worn a black dress with fishnet stockings and sung a suggestive song entitled The Masochism Tango, which he had taken as a come-on’ directed at him.
The complainant refuted this, saying: It does not matter what people sing or choose to wear, this is not an invitation to rape.’ She said she didn’t report the rape at the time because she feared no one would believe her.
The following term she started at the RNCM. She said she slept with Layfield on a number of further occasions, generally in the back of his car and once at his home while his wife and children were in the house (he denied this). I was just going along with it,’ she said. There was no romance. It was just him abusing his power to get sex.’
She said he later told her that if she changed teachers at the college, he would take all her freelance work, such as playing in ensembles, away from her. Again, he denied this.
After the relationship fizzled out, she said she tried to forget what had happened. But, in 2002, she was prompted to make a complaint after learning that Layfield, who had stopped teaching at Chetham’s in 1997, was to be promoted to head of strings at the RNCM.
A number of tutors at the college, led by Martin Roscoe, a world-renowned concert pianist, objected, as did some former pupils. They separately contacted Professor Edward Gregson, then principal of the college, to warn him of Layfield’s past.
Mrs Andrade also contacted the police and the RNCM.
Are you aware,’ she wrote, that when we were 16, Malcolm Layfield took various students to the pub where large quantities of alcohol were bought for the girls which made them less able to resist what then followed?’
In July 2002, the Daily Mail highlighted the allegations against Layfield and published detailed accounts of a number of women who claimed to have had relationships with him while at Chetham’s.
The modus operandi they revealed was one that usually involved drink (he was said to have kept a bottle of whisky in his car) flattery and promises to help the students’ careers.
One told how she’d had sex with him in his teaching room, another at his home after being plied with drink, only realising what had happened when I saw the whisky glass by the bed’ the following morning.
The women spoke of being emotionally scarred by their relationships’ with him, one saying she had been in and out of psychiatric care and had even attempted suicide.
Despite the seriousness of their claims, Layfield was nonetheless appointed to the post which he would hold for the next 11 years.
Principal Gregson and Lord Armstrong chairman of the RNCM’s board of governors, a former Cabinet Secretary and head of the Civil Service under Margaret Thatcher claimed they had thoroughly looked into the claims, that Layfield had admitted to six relationships with students, and that all those involved were consenting and not under-age.
All the occurrences happened at least eight years ago, and in many cases much longer,’ Gregson wrote.
In our discussions with Mr Layfield, he has admitted and expressed his regret for all the occurrences to which our attention had been drawn, and indeed some others of which we were not previously aware, which also date back eight years or more.’
Mr Roscoe, meanwhile, received
a letter from the RNCM’s director of resources, warning him not to communicate with any third party, either inside or outside the college, about any of the details that have been considered as this might bring the name of the college into disrepute’.
He quit his post in protest.
Thanks, however, to the bravery of 48-year-old Mrs Andrade, that was not to be the end of the matter.
The trial of Brewer lifted the lid not just on his sordid abuse of Mrs Andrade (he was jailed for six years, while his wife, Kay, received 21 months for the role she had played in one incident), but also brought the spotlight to bear on Malcolm Layfield’s activities.
Following her tragic death and the conviction of Brewer, questions were immediately raised about the behaviour of a number of other teachers at Chetham’s Layfield included.
As a number of women came forward to air their concerns, Layfield was finally forced to resign his job as head of strings at the RNCM in 2013.
Soon afterwards, his wife, Cathie, a marriage guidance counsellor, divorced him leaving him with nowhere to live but on a rented houseboat that is moored in Manchester.
Layfield was initially arrested over allegations that he had raped three women aged 16 to 18, but he was eventually charged with a single count of rape.
After a trial lasting a week and with just an hour’s deliberation, the jury found him not guilty.
But while it meant that he left the court yesterday without a criminal record, the stain on his reputation is one that is unlikely ever to fade.


Slipped Disc
, June 9th, 2015
Norman Lebrecht, ‘Malcolm Layfield is Innocent. What Now?’

Slipped Disc editorial
The former Chetham’s violin and head of strings at Royal Northern College of Music was cleared within 90 minutes by a jury of the single charge on which he was tried; the alleged rape of an 18 year-old female student some 30 years ago. Layfield, 63, is under British justice, cleared of all stigma and is free to resume his career.
But the issue of sexual exploitation and abuse at English music schools has not gone away.
In court, under oath, Layfield admitted with regret to having several affairs with his students at Chetham’s during the 1980s. He was not the only teacher to do so. Evidence was heard that Chetham’s was, at best, negligent during that period in exercising its duty of care towards vulnerable teenagers. Further evidence indicated that complaints by students against teachers who abused their authority in this way were not dealt with in an appropriate manner.
Sexual abuse in English music schools has been covered up for a full generation. Those who engaged in the cover-up – governors, headteachers, teachers – have not been called to account. There remains a strong case for a public inquiry to be held where both victims and those in authority can raise their voices and lay the wretched past to rest.
The law is a blunt instrument. Malcolm Layfield, innocent, will have to rebuild his practice from scratch. A public inquiry would obviate the need for further prosecutions and allow the healing process to begin.


Music Teacher
, June 9th, 2015
‘Malcolm Layfield acquitted of rape after admitting ‘shameful’ relationships with students’

Former Chetham’s and Royal Northern College of Music violin teacher Malcolm Layfield, 63, has been found not guilty of raping a former pupil.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court took less than 90 minutes to acquit Layfield, who had been accused of raping an 18-year-old female student in the early 1980s.

During the trial, Layfield admitted that he had pursued a number of consensual sexual relationships with students, the youngest of whom was 17, throughout the 1980s. He described these relationships as ‘shameful’, but denied that he had ‘crossed the line’ during a summer school in Cornwall.

Layfield had been accused of driving the woman to an isolated spot in the middle of the night and raping her while she was drunk. The complainant said she subsequently ‘gave in’ and went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks.

The former violin teacher denied the allegation that he used his ‘power and influence’ – including threats to prevent her from gaining work opportunities if she changed tutor – to commit the offence against the teenager in the back of his car.

The trial heard that Layfield was well known for having relationships with students, and his appointment as head of strings at the RNCM in 2002 was controversial.

Speaking to the BBC, pianist Martin Roscoe – who was RNCM’s head of keyboards at the time and who appeared at the trial – said he had been ‘absolutely shocked’ at the college’s decision.

Roscoe continued: ‘On ethical grounds, on moral grounds, that is the behaviour of someone who should not be put in a position of pastoral care, dealing with students of any age, in my view.’

Layfield’s solicitor, Matthew Claughton, said the verdict had some as a ‘huge relief’ to his client.

Tweet from Tom Rawstorne, @Rawsty, June 9th, 2015
‘Woman in Layfield case is now suing Chetham’s for failure to safeguard children, say her lawyers at Slater & Gordon. Signficant. @ian_pace’


Students taking A and AS-Level Music – declining numbers

I would like to express immense thanks to my City University colleague Diana Salazar for compiling some of the figures below and drawing my attention to their sources.

The following tables provide figures for students taking A- and AS-Levels in Music, Music Technology, and proportions gaining particular grades, in the UK from 2009 to 2014. These are derived from several sources: this set of tables collated from the figures provided by the Joint Council for Qualifications, which however combine A and AS-Levels in Music and Music Technology into a single figure. Separation of numbers is enabled by subtraction of figures for Music Technology found at Edexcel, the only board to provide this subject.

There has thus been a 16.8% drop in A-Level Music applicants over this five-year period, a 25.6% drop in A-Level Music Technology applicants, and a net drop of 19.7%. The corresponding figures for AS-Level applicants are 8.0%, 13.1% and 9.7%; slightly less drastic but still very significant. There is a clear decline in the numbers of students taking these subjects, which has major implications in terms of future applicants to music degree courses. Unless this pattern changes, those degree courses requiring an A-Level in one or other of these subjects are certain to see a reductions in numbers.

The Education Secretary, Nicky Morgan, earlier this week made a speech in which she urged young people to concentrate at school on taking STEM subjects rather than the arts and humanities , because of alleged lack of resulting employability (she does not appear to have read articles such as this which stress how employable music graduates are). This decline in those studying in music should, alas, warm Morgan’s heart.


Year
A2 Music
A*-U totals
A2 Music
A*-B
A2 Music, % of total A2 entries
A2 Music Technology
A*-U totals
A2 Music Technology
A*-B
A2 Music Tech, % of total A2 entries


2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
5849
5992
6451
6762
6687
7030
2680
2634
2785
2999
2974
3165
0.70
0.70
0.75
0.78
0.78
0.83
2526
2847
3044
3302
3282
3395
724
814
864
1012
976
964
0.30
0.33
0.35
0.38
0.37
0.40

 



Year

AS Music
A*-U totals

AS Music
A-B

AS Music, % of total A2 entries

AS Music Technology
A*-U totals

AS Music Technology
A-B

AS Music Tech, % of total AS entries


2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
8456
8600
8878
9654
8383
9194
3774
3896
3904
4212
3835
4042
0.60
0.64
0.66
0.68
0.70
0.78
3980
4455
4862
5598
5141
4579
1026
1241
1385
1523
1426
1068
0.28
0.33
0.36
0.40
0.43
0.41

New article in Times Educational Supplement on abuse in musical education – and public debate on October 19th, Barbican Centre

In May of this year (2013), the Times Educational Supplement printed an article by me on how the danger of abuse is especially acute within musical education – (Ian Pace, ‘The culture of music education lends itself to abuse’, TES, May 8, 2013, which can be read online here. In September, a response was printed by Claire Fox, director of the Institute of Ideas (Claire Fox, ‘The line between good teaching and abuse’, TES, September 6, 2013, which can be read here). I believed this article to minimise and make light of the issue, and in particular Fox to be unwilling to consider what might be particular to music education that appears to have facilitated a very large amount of alleged abuse. My response has now been printed on their website – Ian Pace, ‘No music or art form is more important than the right of children to life safe from abuse’, TES, October 3, 2013, and can be read here.

As part of the Battle of Ideas event at the Barbican Centre, hosted by the Institute of Ideas, there will be a debate on Saturday October 19th, 1:30 pm – 3 pm, entitled ‘One to one tuition in the dock? The crisis in music schools’. Further details can be found here. Amongst the panellists are Frank Furedi (whose website is here), whose controversial writings have been very critical of responses to the Jimmy Savile affair and the subsequent Operation Yewtree. I feel that the panel chosen to discuss this issue looks rather one-sided, and so would strongly urge all those who care about the many types of abuse which can occur in music education and the wider music world to attend and ensure all types of opinions and experiences are heard.

Addendum: One point not addressed in my reply is where Fox says that ‘one result of the sexual abuse allegations has been calls to further regulate hands-on one-to-one tuition’. But the extent to which this mode of teaching is under threat is easily overstated – and the claims to that effect derive from a rather over-hasty headline by a sub-editor of a Guardian interview with the Principal of the Royal Northern College of Music, Linda Merrick (Helen Pidd, ‘One-to-one music tuition ‘may be abolished”, The Guardian, March 1, 2013, which can be read here). Merrick never says anything so forceful as that in the interview – the relevant quote is:

“As a sector, we will be looking at whether the one-to-one teaching model, which has been the model in the music world for years and years, can continue,” she said, stressing that such personal tuition has long been “a very important part of being a musician”.

I think all such models will benefit from continuous re-examination (my own views on the subject can be found in an interview with Classical Music magazine here). In general, as the cellist Michal Kaznowski, has suggested, a culture with more (figuratively) ‘open doors’, with students encouraged to co-operate, listen to each other’s lessons, and so on, might go a long way, beyond the guarded secrecy of the private one-to-one lesson. But I have seen no evidence of any likelihood that one-to-one teaching would be abolished in the foreseeable future – that is just scaremongering.

Since the TES article went online, I was copied into a important letter to Claire Fox, which I am reproducing here (anonymously) with permission:

Dear Claire,

I am pleased that you are debating the issue of abuse in music schools following the recent death of Frances Andrade and the subsequent outpouring of allegations of similar abuse. However, as someone who was also abused I am very concerned that the real issue is being clouded over by a total misunderstanding of what really goes on and I urge you to rethink the debate. Your debate could help prevent further abuse rather than further divide people on something that is irrelevant.

The issue is not one on one tuition: it is not a grope or inappropriate touch by a teacher in a music lesson that is the issue. It is the systematic, psychological grooming that goes on subtly until the “victim” is sufficiently weakened in order to “allow” sexual abuse to happen. This grooming can happen anywhere, and very easily, over a period of time: a simple flattering comment in the corridor after a lesson, a subtle complement then the withdrawal of praise. It is easy to do this in the highly competitive environment of specialist education where everyone is striving to be the best.

Until this is properly understood, there is no way that we as a society can prevent further abuse from taking place. None of the teachers at my boarding school – who were in loco parentis – did anything despite very obvious external signs that something was very wrong. Either they didn’t care or didn’t realise anything was wrong: both unacceptable. Many of those teachers are still there over 20 years later and the man who abused me continued to abuse girls there until one girl went to the police in 2002. However, he denied everything and is still teaching in other institutions as the girl and others who came forward could not face going to trial.

What needs to be done is simple:
Educate parents and teachers about grooming and spotting the signs of a child who is being abused
Educate children about grooming and what is appropriate behaviour (including touching) of teachers.

Please have the right debate.