St Davids College

Pete Williams2 JPG

Meet our new Head of Music

Published: 18.06.2023 ( 11 months ago )

Our school has always been passionate about music, and we nurture the potential in every pupil, in an inclusive environment. Whether it’s in our incredible school productions, popular band nights or house plays, every child is encouraged to perform

Mr Williams is no stranger to St David’s as he has been a peripatetic singing teacher with us since last September, as well as supporting the school choir. In addition to this, he recently helped with this year’s sell-out production of Mathilda.

He has been teaching music for 28 years, and joins us from Rydal Penrhos School, where he has worked for the last 23 years, seven of those as the Director of Music.

As well as a passion for teaching music, Mr Williams is a prolific composer and arranger who has written, recorded and produced a wide variety of music for school events, including musicals, church services and concerts, as well as musicals performed outside the school environment, ‘Ebeneezer Scrooge’ and ‘Hot Wheelz’, the latter of which was a commission from Llandudno Youth Music Theatre.

He has also extended his composition work to include writing and recording jingles for local radio station Bayside Radio. He presents a popular radio programme for Bayside Radio called ‘Eclectic Arena’, producing and editing the two hour show himself. On the show he enjoys interviewing musicians and authors of books about music and musicians.

His own musical journey first started when he was just nine years old, when his father brought home a Bontempi keyboard.

“I started playing the keyboard by ear and my father soon managed to find a Piano and Organ teacher named Arthur Mostyn. I started my classical training with him age 10 and by the time I was 12, he had found a congregation in need of an organist.

“I was playing the organ in services in a Welsh Chapel, and at 15 I was the organist for Male Voice Choir summer concerts at Holy Trinity Church in Llandudno.”

Mr Williams says he is “fanatical” about any type of music and has a very eclectic music taste ranging from 12th century choral music to modern electronic music. As well as being a classically trained pianist and organist, he’s also a highly accomplished vocalist, guitarist, bass guitarist and drummer whose former pupils include Rob Hall, formerly of the band Catfish and the Bottlemen and Nico Widdowson, jazz pianist with Mabgate Organ Trio.

He has taught music from Foundation stage to A level and A level Music Technology as well as teaching and coaching singers, pianists, guitarists and drummers in a variety of styles ranging from classical music to jazz, folk, pop, rock and the various sub genres intrinsic to electronic music.

He’s performed in bands, Irish folk groups, jazz bands and small orchestras, and has extensive experience as a musical director for a wide variety of musical ensembles.

“Music is my life”, he says simply.

“I’ve had many musical influences but the biggest are probably Holst, Debussy, Ravel and Stravinsky. I’ve had a love for Mozart and Beethoven since my early teens whilst simultaneously loving Pop, Jazz, a wide variety of Rock and Electronic music.”

“I’m looking forward very much to joining St David’s, working alongside wonderfully dedicated staff and I’ve got big plans,” added Mr Williams.

He continues: “One of the first things I want to concentrate on is developing the choir, they’ll be singing all sorts of music from pop and rock to jazz and classical music.

“I also want to develop a wide variety of instrumental ensembles and give more performing opportunities for soloists and small groups, enabling pupils to communicate their own love of listening to and playing music.”

“My teaching approach is very inclusive, as I believe that everyone should enjoy music, and what I like about St David’s is the clearly positive environment and how everyone is encouraged to have a go.”

He added: “It’s a very friendly place with highly supportive pupils and staff, I can’t wait to get started. I see that the school values the arts highly, and I’m hugely inspired and motivated by this.”

We are all looking forward to giving Mr Williams a big St David’s welcome and cannot wait to see what he has up his sleeve for the school’s continuing musical journey.