David has been involved with music all his life, being a choirboy at Truro Cathedral, studying singing at the Royal Academy of Music with Joy Mammen and Pieter Van der Stolk as well as orchestral conducting with Maurice Miles. A choral scholarship from St. George’s Chapel Windsor enabled him to further his studies at Royal Holloway College. After teaching for some years he went to the Kodály Institute in Kecskemét, Hungary, for two years. He studied Solfège, Methodology as well as choral conducting with Peter Erdei.
Returning to England he took up a position at the Purcell School becoming its director of music in 1987. He conducted many orchestral and choral performances on the South Bank as well as all over Britain and abroad including the Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow.
He has lectured at Trinity College of Music in orchestral and choral conducting, Birmingham Conservatoire and is currently a professor at the Guildhall School of Music. He and his Japanese wife, Yuko, founded the Kodály Centre of London in 1992 and they have produced over 30 publications for use in Kodály education. He is a member of the International Kodály Society and has given lectures and demonstrations all over the world including Westminster Choir College in the USA and Portland State University in Oregon.
He works frequently with Géza and Csaba Szilvay of the Colourstrings Foundation and has also lectured frequently at the Kodály Institute and the Liszt Academy in Budapest. He is collaborating with Cyrilla Rowsell on the series of Primary school music curriculum books called ‘Jolly Music’ and has also co-authored a book on ‘Harmony through Relative Solfa’ with Mónika Benedek.
Recent editorial work includes a performing edition of Musica Transalpina 1 of 1588, The children’s songs collected by Cecil Sharp from Children and the complete canons of Cherubini. He has been conductor of the Eastcote Choral Society and the London Kodály Choir.
He was awarded an honorary ARAM by the Royal Academy of Music for his services to music education and in 2007 was awarded the highly coveted ‘Kodály Institute’ award again for his services to music education and conducting work.
In 2018 David was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award in the Rhinegold Music Teacher Awards for Excellence.