Patrick Shepherd is an accomplished composer, conductor, performer, teacher and music critic. He is passionate about new music, music education, community music and creativity. He is at home composing or arranging music for a diverse range of performers, from professionals to community ensembles and young people.
A graduate of Manchester, London and Canterbury universities, Patrick also holds licentiate (LTCL) and fellowship (FTCL) diplomas in composition from Trinity College, London. He is currently Senior Lecturer in Music Education at the University of Canterbury.
Patrick's works have been performed in the UK, USA, Germany, Russia, South Korea, China and Australia as well as regular performances and broadcasts in New Zealand. An experienced examiner and adjudicator, Patrick is in demand as a music critic and for nearly two decades has been a music critic for The Press (Christchurch).
Being a multi-instrumentalist (he holds distinctions at grade 8 level on clarinet, violin and oboe and also plays sax, flute, recorder, percussion, guitar and piano) naturally led him to the orchestra and, eventually, conducting. Patrick has conducted many orchestras and choirs, including the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, Christchurch Youth Orchestra, Garden City Symphony Orchestra, NASDA chorus and Resonance Ensemble, and he is currently conductor of the Camerata Strings. From 2005 to 2019 Patrick conducted the Christchurch Schools’ Music Festival Symphony Orchestra, and from 2013 to 2019 was the Musical Director of the Festival.
Patrick is an Honorary Antarctic Arts Fellow, having travelled to Antarctica early in 2004, returning in 2016 in his capacity as an Antarctic Arts Researcher in UC's Gateway Antarctica Programme. Much of his current creative work relates to those trips and, somewhat paradoxically, his experience in Antarctica led him to research the medical condition synaesthesia (multi-sensory perception), conducting research projects at local and national levels.