June 28, 2021 – Repton has named Richard Yarr FRSA as the school’s first Music Fellow.
Richard is a very accomplished musician and producer with a strong track record in developing talent.
He studied music at Queen’s University in Belfast, where he graduated with First Class Honors and the May Turtle Scholarship for Academic Excellence.
He then won a choir scholarship at King’s College London, where he completed a Masters in Music, before returning to Queen’s for a PhD.
Richard joined the BBC in 2000 and is Senior Producer of Arts, Music and Events for BBC Northern Ireland. In this role he oversees all classical music productions in the region for both BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio Ulster.
He has held various board positions over the past twenty years and is currently chairman of the Charles Wood Festival of Music and Summer School.
He founded the NI International Organ Competition in 2011, is the patron of the NI Young Musician of the Year Competition, and trustee of the Church of Ireland’s Organ Scholarship Program.
Richard also presents Sounds Sacred, BBC Radio Ulster’s popular Sunday night calling program, and is music director at Belfast’s oldest place of worship.
In 2019 he was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and received the Freedom of the City of London in the same year.
Repton’s Music Director Oliver Walker says Richard’s engagement will bring great benefits to our busy music school: “Richard will not only support us with career advice, but also help introduce students to exciting new musical talent and contribute to our active masterclass program . ” He will also judge music competitions and help us market our most capable and talented musicians. “
The many and varied roles Richard has enjoyed throughout his musical career will enable him to provide extraordinary insight to the Reptoners.
Richard said: “The musical talent at Repton is outstanding and it is wonderful to see that every musical endeavor at the school is supported.
“I will improve on this by showcasing some of Northern Ireland’s best talent – from international artists to opera directors – in a variety of contexts and I look forward to providing opportunities for the school both domestically and abroad.
“Music has brought me some really life changing moments, so I’m passionate about making young people enjoy all of their opportunities.”
Headmaster Mark Semmence added, “We are delighted to have Richard as our first Music Fellow.
“Music is an integral part of a Repton education and many Reptonians have successful careers in many genres.
“We value the wealth that a lifelong love of music brings and encourage Reptonians to enter our music school with an open mind and a keen ear.”