Past and Present Conductors

Jonathan Butcher

Jonathan was principal conductor of The Lydian Orchestra for its first 10 years, returning recently as a guest for the December 2014 concert.   He is the Musical Director of Surrey Opera and conductor of the IAPS Symphony Orchestra.

Brynly Clarke

Music Adviser to the Orchestra, Brynly is regularly on the podium and directed the summer concerts and tours in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017.  He has worked professionally with choirs and orchestras in Belgium and Ireland and started out life as a professional bassoonist with the London Sinfonietta.


A highly sought-after young choral conductor who has a local connection as Director of Choral Music at Tonbridge Grammar School.


A former horn player with the Lydian Orchestra, Alec is principal horn of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and a professor at the GSMD.  We were delighted that he agreed to come and conduct Lydian for the Spring 2018 course and concert.



Leader of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra from 1976-1989, Barry was a regular conductor of the Lydian in the 90s and early 2000s.  He was President of the orchestra for many years, stepping down only recently.

Michael Hitchcock

Well-known locally for his work with youth and adult orchestras, Michael has run the LTO and conducted the main Orchestra in recent concerts.  

Paul Hoskins

Conductor of Rambert since 1996, Paul Hoskins directed Lydian on several occasions during the early 2000s.  Despite his busy professional career, Paul still enjoys training amateur orchestras.

Ethan Merrick

Once a member of The Lydian Orchestra, professional cellist, Ethan Merrick went on to become conductor of the LTO for several years as well as regularly directing the main orchestra.

Christoph Nielbock

Director of the Wiesbaden Musikschule, Christoph has been twice to the UK to conduct Lydian, strengthening our ties with the twin town of Tunbridge-Wells.  Christoph has been our host for the tours to Germany in 2013 and 2015.  We hope for further collaboration.


Geoffrey was also a Lydian member (viola).  He conducted the orchestra on its 30th Anniversay tour to Paris in 2006.  In 2009 he won the Leeds Conducting Competition.  He now works regularly at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and with the London Sinfonietta and Manchester Camerata. 

Nils Schweckendiek

A former Lydian cellist, Nils has made a name as a professional conductor, living and working in Scandinavia. He returned to conduct the 40th Anniversary concert in July 2016 after an 11-year absence.  


Peter Young

Well known in Sevenoaks for his many years in the music department at Sevenoaks School and as organist and choral director at St. Nicholas Church, Peter collaborated with June Clements in his early teaching years.