Martin Lightowler

About our Musical Director

Martin Lightowler

Martin has always been an active musician – singing, playing piano, oboe and composing. From the age of 13 he attended the Northern School of Music and played principal oboe in the Manchester Youth Orchestra.

At the age of 18 he studied at Dartington College of Arts and started teaching three years later in Sheffield, where he has since lived and worked. He achieved an ARCM in 1975 has played in various orchestras in Sheffield, currently playing principal oboe with the Rotherham Symphony Orchestra and playing in the Steel City 5 Wind Quintet.

From 2005 to 2023 he was conductor of the Endcliffe Orchestra, an appointment which was a great privilege, a wonderful challenge and terrific fun. Singing is another of his loves, he has sung with the Sheffield Chorale, the William Byrd Singers in Manchester, Schola Gregoriana and Renaissance Voices, and early in his career was appointed conductor of Stannington Choral Society.

In the autumn of 2010 he started the Westside Singers – initially with 7 keen and eager folk in a front room, the choir has steadily grown in numbers and quality, but always retaining the initial vision of a choir for all, no matter what previous experience (if any), musical knowledge or vocal ability, always striving to develop a good singing technique and quality performances, using a broad range of types and styles of music.