Summerly, Jeremy, English conductor and musicologist; b. Stoke-on-Trent, Feb. 28, 1961. He was a chorister at Lichfield Cathedral School (1969-74) and Winchester Coll. (1974-78) before pursuing his education at the Univ. of Oxford (B.A., 1982; M.A., 1987) and King’s Coll., Univ. of London (M.Mus. in historical musicology, 1989). While at Oxford, he was a choral scholar at New Coll. (1978-82) and was conductor of the New Coll. Chamber Orch. (1980-81) and the Oxford Chamber Choir (1981-82). From 1982 to 1989 he was a studio manager for BBC Radio, and then was a freelance writer/presenter with it from 1990. In 1984 he became founder-conductor of the Oxford Camerata, and in 1992 of the Oxford Camerata Instrumental Ensemble. He was a lecturer (1989-95), head of academic studies (1996-99), and head of undergraduate programs (from 1999) at the Royal Coll. of Music in London. From 1990 to 1996 he was conductor of the Schola Cantorum of Oxford. In 1999 he became director of music at Christ Church, Chelsea, but continued to conduct the Oxford Camerata and Oxford Camerata Instrumental Ensemble. As a conductor, he has toured Europe, the U.S., Japan, South Africa, and other countries. He made his first appearance at the Aldeburgh Festival in 1998 and at the BBC Proms in London in 1999. Summerly has conducted the first performances in modern times of many works from the medieval and Renaissance eras, and has also made many recordings. He has also programmed works by contemporary European composers, most notably György Ligeti, Franco Donatoni, and Arvo Part. In 1995 he was honored with the European Cultural Prize of the European Assn. for the Encouragement of the Arts in Basel. He publ. a vol. of medieval songs and carols in 1999.
—Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire