'Simon is a supremely sensitive and tasteful arranger but with that rare gift to convince you that this is how the composer might originally have conceived the music.' Dominic Fyfe (Senior Producer, Decca Classical)
Simon Parkin was born in Manchester. He went to the Yehudi Menuhin School at the age of 10 and trained there as a pianist. An early interest in composition was encouraged there, and at 17 Simon entered Manchester University and the RNCM as a composition student. Upon graduation he was invited onto the staff at RNCM, where he has taught a range of practically-based subjects including aural, improvisation, composition and arranging. He is now Deputy Head of Academic Studies at the RNCM. He has also taught improvisation and composition at both the Menuhin and the Purcell music schools.
Simon has developed his role as an accompanist/duo pianist, enjoying a comprehensive repertoire, and as well as his partnership with the ‘cellist Hannah Roberts he works regularly with artists such as Ralph Kirshbaum, and has performed with a range of international artists at festivals and in recital.. He is regularly invited as pianist for instrumental classes at IMS Prussia Cove, London Masterclasses and the Schleswig-Holstein Festival Masterclasses, and has recorded a recital disk with violinist Detlef Hahn.
As an arranger, Simon is much in demand, and in addition to his role as Arranger-in-Residence for Manchester Camerata, for whom he produces arrangements in varied styles and for a range of ensembles his work has featured in the commercial recordings of international artists and ensembles including Sheku Kanneh-Mason, Jess Gillam and the Sakura Cello Quintet. The recently released number-one-selling CD 'Elgar' by Sheku contains 5 of Simon's arrangements, and he has more pending on future releases by Decca.
Simon, who was awarded a PhD in composition by Manchester University, is an award-winning composer with an extensive catalogue of performed works. His latest ongoing project is to compose a piece for every day of the year, for various instruments together with piano. Some of the 'December' pieces, for double bass and piano, were recently recorded by Leon Bosch on Meridian.
Simon is currently Director of Concerts for the Manchester Midday Concerts Society.