Stephen Minton was surprised when his first (three-quarter-size) ‘cello appeared, a gift from his parents when he was only six. Following their discussions about his musical career and thanks to his somewhat hazy understanding of the range of string instruments, he was expecting a viola! However, he decided not to complain, and has been a ‘cellist ever since – for which TPS is very grateful.
As a student Stephen led the ‘cellos in the Warwickshire County Youth Orchestra, and later played with the Oxford University Symphony Orchestra. During his university years he also spent his summers busking around Europe with three friends, two of whom went on to form StringFever, a successful electric string quartet act. Sadly the practical realities of life intervened for him, and Stephen took up a job in IT. Today he is a Technology Manager at an Investment Bank. His specialist expertise is in much demand as the Executive Committee grapples with 21st century communications.
He is a relative newcomer to Tonbridge Philharmonic Society, having previously enjoyed stints with the Forest Philharmonic in Walthamstow, and with the Bromley Symphony Orchestra. He joined TPS at the start of the 2015/2016 season, initially because it was so much easier to get to Tonbridge and then home after work than to Bromley. Captivated by the energy and inspiration of Matthew Willis, he stayed. He has been known to lead rehearsals as conductor when the MD suffers a train cancellation or is otherwise indisposed. With a busy family and professional life, he does not have as much time for composition as he would wish, but has composed music for various ensembles (particularly strings) and is working on a commission for the Society.
Stephen took up the position of Orchestral Chair in 2018.