Composer and conductor Janet Wheeler works with choirs in Saffron Walden and Cambridge. She read music at Cambridge, studying composition with Robin Holloway, before a career in secondary music followed by eight years as music producer for BBC Schools Radio. Now a busy choral conductor whose choirs include Granta Chorale and Saffron Walden Choral Society, she is also much in demand as a choral composer, writing music from small a capella pieces to choral/orchestral works, all informed by her strong response to the rhythms and meanings of texts.
Her larger works include Sea Tongue (2004), Magnificat Cum Angelis (2012), The Ceaseless Round of Circling Planets, commissioned for the 2016 Thaxted Festival, and I Sing and Ever Shall from the same year, commissioned by Southampton Philharmonic Choir. Wheeler conducts the second performance of this in March in Saffron Hall. Commissions from 2017 included Songs and Visions of Joy for Psallite Women’s Choir, And Then We Knew Peace and A Poison Tree for Farnham Youth Choir, and a commemorative choral cycle Gather the Good Days, commissioned as a companion piece to her earlier cycle Time Becomes a Song.
Choirs performing Wheeler’s music include Gloucester Cathedral Choir and I Fagiolini (both in broadcasts on Radio 3), the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain, National Youth Choir of Wales, University of London Chamber Choir, Imperial College Choir, Chandos Chamber Choir and many more.
Her recent competition successes include the Friends of Cathedral Music Diamond Jubilee Introit Competition in 2016 and the Hendrix Carol Competition 2017. She is currently working on music for NYCGB with percussionists O Duo.