Founded in 1973 by Terry Edwards, former Director of the Royal Opera House Chorus, London Voices is now managed and directed by Ben Parry, composer and Artistic Director of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain.
The choir has performed throughout Europe, Asia and the USA and can range from a small vocal consort through to a choir of more than 100 singers. The choir has tackled a vast array of repertoire ranging from Renaissance polyphony (Tallis at Luzern Festival) to contemporary music (Frank Zappa at Southbank Centre, London) as well as featuring on recordings as diverse as opera, oratorio, Coldplay, German Heavy Metal and Ozzy Osbourne.
The ensemble has collaborated with many distinguished composers and conductors including John Adams, Semyon Bychkov, Bernard Haitink, Vladimir Jurowski, György Ligeti, Vasily Petrenko, Sir Simon Rattle and Georg Solti. It had a particularly close association with composer Luciano Berio, performing his Sinfonia on many occasions (most recently at the 2018 BBC Proms), as well as works including Coro, Cries of London, A‑Ronne, Laborintus II and Folk Songs. The choir also performed in the world première of Stockhausen’s Mittwoch aus Licht, staged by Birmingham Opera in 2012. It has given concerts globally, in locations including Aldeburgh, Beijing, Berlin, Birmingham, Munich, Jordan, Lucerne, New York, St Denis, Shanghai and Turkey.
London Voices is well-known for singing on hundreds of movie and computer game soundtracks, including Abzu, Distant Worlds (Final Fantasy), Halo 5, the Harry Potter, Hobbit, Star Wars, Hunger Games and Lord of the Rings film series, Spectre, Grand Budapest Hotel (Oscar® for Best Soundtrack) and most recently appearing on-screen in Mission: Impossible - Fallout. It has participated on many operatic and choral recordings and has collaborated with musicians including Dave Brubeck, Renée Fleming, Sir Paul McCartney, Sting, Sir Bryn Terfel and Roger Waters.
Ben studied Music and History of Art at Cambridge University, and was a member of King’s College Choir. In the mid-1980s he joined The Swingle Singers as a singer, arranger and music director, toured globally and performed with some of the world’s greatest musicians including Stephane Grappelli, Pierre Boulez and Dizzy Gillespie. Moving to Edinburgh in 1995, he co-founded the Dunedin Consort, which has gone on to establish itself as Scotland’s premiere Baroque ensemble. He also took up posts as Director of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra Chorus, Director of Choral Music at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and conductor of Haddo House Opera.
He moved back to England in 2003, becoming Director of Music at St. Paul’s School, London, then of Junior Academy at the Royal Academy of Music, and subsequently his current position as Principal Conductor of the National Youth Choir of Great Britain. As Director of London Voices he has performed in major concert houses around the world as well as conducting many major film soundtracks including Harry Potter, The Hobbit and Avengers. Ben was Assistant Director of Music at King’s College, Cambridge, until 2022. As an orchestral conductor he has worked with the Academy of Ancient Music, Britten Sinfonia, London Mozart Players, Seville Royal Symphony Orchestra, London Symphony, London Philharmonic and BBC Concert Orchestras.
Ben’s own compositions and arrangements include the popular Faber Carol Book and a burgeoning catalogue of choral music for Peters Edition and OUP. He has enjoyed commissions from, among others, the St John’s College, Cambridge, BBC Singers, Chelmsford, Ely, Norwich and Worcester cathedrals, and his music has been heard at the BBC Proms and on the TV and radio. He is also a regular composer of production music for some major UK library music companies. Ben features on the credits of well over 100 recordings, appearing variously as singer, conductor, co-director, director, producer, chorus master and composer.