Dave Ransom (Principal Conductor)


David Ransom (born 1984) is a horn player and conductor, based in the Bristol area.

David studied at the Royal College of Music from 2002 onwards as an Associated Board scholar, where he specialised on the French Horn. Upon the completion of both his undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications at the Royal College, he went on to build up a busy freelance career as an orchestral horn player. David also began his conducting studies whilst in London, where he learnt with Neil Thompson and Patrick Bailey. During this time, he was involved in masterclasses given by Bernard Haitink, Andrew Litton and Vladimir Ashkenazy.

He currently works as a professional orchestral horn player, and has freelanced with many of the UK’s leading orchestras, including the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, English National Ballet, BBC Concert Orchestra and various others. He has worked under many notable conductors in his career to date, including Valery Gergiev, Richard Hickox, Sir Roger Norrington and Vladimir Jurowski. He has been involved in a variety of recordings for both Radio 3 and Classic FM that have included broadcasts as part of the Proms, and has played in a variety of commercial recordings in recent years. 

Following his years at the Royal College of Music, David initially specialised in Period Instrument performance. He studied for a short time in France as part of the Jeune Orchestre de l'Abbaye, learning from the stylistic experience of conductors including Philippe Herreweghe and FrancoisXavier Roth. This in turn led to freelance work with leading period orchestras in the UK including the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Gabrieli Consort. 

David has maintained regular conducting experience over the last few years, working predominantly with youth orchestras in the Bristol area, and has frequently conducted symphonic  programmes at St. Georges in Bristol. David was recently appointed Bristol Symphony Orchestra’s new interim Principal Conductor.  

Robert Weaver (Associate Conductor)

Recently appointed Assistant Conductor of the Bath Philharmonia, one of the leading professional orchestras in the South West, Robert Weaver is establishing himself as a commanding presence on the podium. Known for his innovative programming and high-calibre interpretation of a wide range of repertoire, Robert has conducted the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, St Petersburg Chamber Philharmonic, Trondheim Soloists and London Symphony Chorus, and worked with soloists including Tasmin Little, Nicola Benedetti, Peter Donohoe and Guy Johnston. Committed to promoting new music, Robert has performed works by a number of contemporary composers including John Pickard, Anthony Payne and Oliver Knussen.
A violinist by training, Robert studied with Duncan Riddell, leader of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and has performed under the baton of renowned conductors such as Sir Colin Davis, Sir Mark Elder, Sir Charles Mackerras, Robin Ticciati and Richard Hickox OBE, and in several international music festivals including Aldeburgh, St Endellion and the BBC Proms.
Robert studied conducting with Lev Parikian and Alexander Polyanichko and has participated in masterclasses with Colin Metters, Martyn Brabbins and Mark Heron. Robert read medicine at the University of Bristol where he was recipient of the Vice-Chancellor's Scholarship for artistic talent. He was awarded the Dean’s Prize for Outstanding Achievement in Music, Art and Drama, recognising his contribution to the musical life of the university as music director of the Bristol University Chamber Orchestra and leader of the Symphony Orchestra.
Robert is an alumnus of the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme and National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

Bristol Symphony Orchestra was very pleased to welcome Robert as Associate Conductor in April 2022. He conducts his first concert with us on 26th June.

William Goodchild (Conductor 2016 - 2019)

William Goodchild is a professional composer and conductor. He composes music for film, television, concert performance and commercial installation. Many of the 80 films he’s composed for the major broadcasters have won international awards. Since 2016, he has had three nominations for Best Composer at the RTS West of England Awards and, in 2016, was nominated for the Music Award at Wildscreen Festival for Jago - A Life Underwater. In 2017 he won Best Score at the Hollywood International Moving Pictures Film Festival for Living Spirit Pictures’ Seeing Him.


On stage and in the recording studio, William has collaborated with a wide variety of international soloists including guitarist John Williams, singer Tom Jones, saxophonist Andy Sheppard and jazz quartet Get The Blessing. William’s passion for working across styles led to a live and recorded collaboration with Mercury Prize-Winner, Roni Size & Reprazent, and their album, Live at Colston Hall, was released in November 2015. Also at the Colston Hall, with Sir David Attenborough presenting, William orchestrated and conducted the BBC’s Nature’s Great Events Live to a sell-out audience. The BBC’s Wild China series, orchestrated and conducted by William, won an Emmy.


Many recordings conducted by William are available to buy on Sony Classical, Universal Classical and Jazz, and CBS Records. He has worked regularly with a number of professional orchestras including the BBC Concert Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Bristol Ensemble. William is Artistic Director and Conductor of Bristol Symphony Orchestra.


Bristol Symphony Orchestra
Bristol Symphony Orchestra
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