Our Adjudicators

JILL BALDOCK LIDTA, ARAD

Jill is an adjudicator for The British & International Federation of Festivals and for All England Dance.

She trained at The Hylton Bromley School on Merseyside, where she gained several scholarships from the International Dance Teachers Association. She also trained at The Royal Academy of Dance. Jill entered The Sunshine Competitions (pre-All England!) and gained seven gold medals in the London finals. Jill received a scholarship to attend ‘The Place’ (London’s Contemporary School of Dance) and went on to teach contemporary dance for both Derby and Surrey Arts Councils. She has also taught for the Italia Conti School and owned her own theatre school.

Her first professional dancing job was with the famous ‘Top of The Pops’ dance group ‘The Go-Jos’, working in TV, Film, Cabaret and West End. Shows include “Kiss Me Kate”, “Carousel”, “The King and I”, “Oklahoma”, “Fiddler On The Roof”. Jill went on to become an International choreographer, director and producer of theatre and cabaret shows.

She diverted her career into the music business, producing for EMI, Virgin, Carlton and she recorded artistes such as Shirley Bassey, Ruthie Henshall, Bonnie Langford, Marti Webb, Toyah Wilcox and many more. During that time she also ran her own music publishing business.

“My entire family have been firm followers of the Festival Fraternity and I am looking forward to adjudicating your fabulous festival!”

FIONA CHRYSSIDES MA, BMus, FRCO, ARCM, PGCA

Fiona was born in Scotland and developed an early interest in music, learning piano and completing an ARCM piano performer’s diploma while still at school. She studied for a degree in modern languages at Glasgow University and then concentrated on a musical career, working as a piano accompanist and coach for singers and becoming a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists.

She has given organ recitals in cathedrals throughout Britain and always worked locally with choirs and choral societies. For several years she was director of the University of Plymouth’s Choral Society and Orchestra and MD for its Musical Society and was Managing Editor of Organists’ Review magazine, a quarterly publication with international circulation. Fiona has been an associate lecturer of the Open University for her entire working life, teaching on its music courses and arts foundation course; she examines for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, both in the UK and abroad, and adjudicates at British Federation music festivals. She now lives in Herefordshire and has a small private teaching practice there.

GRAEME HUMPHREY ARAM

Graeme has been a teacher of piano all his professional life, both at the Royal Academy of Music for thirty six years from 1974 till 2010, and privately. He has also been very actively involved in festival adjudicating and examining – work which has taken him all over the world.

He was awarded an Associated Board Scholarship on the piano from New Zealand to study at the Royal Academy of Music. He regularly teaches in Hong Kong, and was external examiner at the National Academy of Fine Arts in Singapore from 2009 till 2011. In 1988, he founded the Blackheath Music Festival in London. From 1993 till 2010 he tutored at the Shrewsbury International Summer School and was Music Director of the Summer School from 2004 till 2010. In 1997, he was elected Warden of the Private Teachers’ Section of the Incorporated Society of Musicians, and in 2002 was elected President of the Royal Academy of Music Clubs. Graeme is an Adjudicator member of the British and International Federation of Festivals.

JONATHAN OWEN Cert Ed, Cert TESOL, MSTSD

Jonathan trained as a Music & Drama teacher at Birmingham University’s Faculty of Education. For Trinity College, London, he has examined Speech, Drama, Effective Communication and Musical Theatre across the United Kingdom, and throughout India and New Zealand. As a member of The International Federation of Adjudicators he has adjudicated festivals throughout the UK and in Singapore, Hong Kong and Sri Lanka. In Autumn 2016 he returned to adjudicate the Hong Kong Festival for his sixth consecutive year.

As an actor he has appeared in numerous radio plays for BBC Radio 4, and is best remembered as Terry Barford in The Archers. His television work is extensive amounting to over 50 appearances in TV Dramas and ‘soaps’, including Coronation St., Heartbeat, Emmerdale, Doctors, London’s Burning, Triangle and All Creatures Great & Small.

As an actor he has appeared in London’s West-End theatre in: Jesus Christ Superstar, Call Me Madam, Singin’ In The Rain, Ziegfeld and Having A Ball.

In the provinces Jonathan has played most major theatres, with favourite roles including those in A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum (York), The King & I (Weston), Wait Until Dark (Jersey), Blithe Spirit and Habeas Corpus (Isle of Man). His national tours include: Charlie Girl, Some Like It Hot, ‘Allo ‘Allo and Singin’ In The Rain which also went to Tokyo. Jonathan is also one of the United Kingdom’s experts on British Patomime and one of the most established Pantomime ‘Dames’.

He is the author of the stageplay Teapots and Superglue, a comedy-drama that has received much critical acclaim.

YVONNE PATRICK GRNCM, ALCM

Yvonne Patrick studied at the RNCM and began her professional career with D’Oyly Carte Opera Company. She joined Glyndebourne Festival Opera in 1994 and made her Glyndebourne Touring Opera debut singing Despina in Cosi fan tutte. In The Bartered Bride she sang the role of Esmerelda which included training to be a trapeze artist! For Opera North, she sang Musetta in La Boheme. She has also worked for WNO, Garsington Opera, Kentish Opera, Carl Rosa Opera Company, Swansea City Opera, Garden Opera and Opera Brava. She has performed roles in La Traviata, Don Giovani, Madame Butterfly, La Boheme, Cosi fan tutte, The Magic Flute and Die Fledermaus. On a tour of Kenya, she was the soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem at Nairobi Cathedral. As a well-known performer of Gilbert and Sullivan, she has appeared as soprano soloist with the Philadelphia Savoy Company in America. Yvonne is a regular guest performer on cruises and has appeared on BBC Radio 2’s Friday Night is Music Night.

Alongside her busy performing career, Yvonne works extensively for the education departments of major UK opera companies. She teaches privately at Lancing College and is an Associate Lecturer at Chichester University.