Ray Maulkin and his wife Kathryn Sargent were the joint musical directors of Pro Musica from 2002 until Ray’s untimely death in March 2019.
Lewes resident Ray Maulkin was born in Southend on Sea, Essex, and studied at the Purcell School and the Royal Academy of Music. He was a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists and held a music degree from Durham University. He had a long and productive career in music education as lecturer and teacher in Essex, Warwickshire and Sussex. Involved with high-quality music making throughout his career, leading orchestras and choirs. With church choirs and his own choral group, he played and conducted at churches and Cathedrals throughout the country.
When he moved to Sussex, Ray became Organist and Choirmaster at St. Andrew’s Church, Alfriston. As well as being the organist and a visiting teacher at Roedean School, Ray was also accompanist to both Reigate & Redhill Choral Society and East Grinstead Choral Society. In 2002, together with his wife Kathryn, he was appointed Director of the chamber choir Pro Musica. In 2008, they moved the choir from its original base in Rottingdean to Lewes. They built the choir from an original core of 20 members to a flourishing 50 plus members.
Ray and Kathryn developed and expanded the choir over recent years to the high standard it now achieves, performing classical choral works from Bach and Mozart to 20th century composers in its autumn and spring concerts, and then lighter but equally demanding works drawn from musicals and popular music in its summer concerts. The choir performed with professional soloists and were accompanied by high-quality ensemble chamber groups.
As he had done throughout his career, Ray arranged music for the choir to perform and was working on some of the pieces they performed in their summer 2019 concert in St Andrews, Alfriston, even in his final days in March 2019. Their performance in the summer was dedicated to Ray and his musical legacy. Kathryn, herself a singer and teacher, who as choir co-director had also sung as a soprano in the choir and performed with them as a soloist, was present with family and friends.
After a search, the choir announced in August 2019 that it was appointing Richard Miller as their successor. Richard is a London-based composer, conductor and arranger, who graduated with distinction from the Royal College of Music and comes with established Sussex connections. Richard is a much sought-after choral and orchestral conductor and has worked with the Havant Symphony Orchestra, the Hastings Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra, the Esterhazy Chamber Choir in Lewes, and Aylesbury Symphony Orchestra.
For further information on Ray and Kathryn please follw this link to our previous 'directors of music' page