With deep sadness the London Symphony Orchestra announces that Judith Ackrill, Head of LSO Discovery, passed away last week after a year-long illness.
Judith led LSO Discovery, the Orchestra’s wide-ranging music-education and community programme, from 2014 and was held in the highest esteem by her team, her colleagues, the LSO musicians, family of conductors and all of the Orchestra’s partners in music education work. Judith was totally committed to increasing access to music education for everyone, whatever their background, a belief that was at the heart of all of her work at the LSO. She will be greatly missed for her calm demeanour, good humour, sound judgement and leadership by everyone at the LSO, and everyone involved with LSO Discovery.
A passion for making music accessible to everyone can be seen throughout Judith’s career. She was a much-valued member of the Board of Directors of English Touring Opera, a company whose primary aim is to offer opera to everyone, by touring extensively to communities across England that otherwise might not be able to experience live opera. Before joining the LSO, Judith was a highly respected consultant in music and music education projects around the country, and worked for many years as concert manager for the Nash Ensemble’s busy Wigmore Hall season. This followed a distinguished period at Arts Council England as Touring Officer for Opera, enabling opera and dance across the country to punch above their weight and to thrive.
Having studied music at Bristol University, Judith’s first professional role was as concert manager for the London Sinfonietta under the inspirational leadership of Michael Vyner, where she developed her deep love of working with contemporary composers and musicians.
Judith was also a keen amateur viola player and was well-known to musicians across London.
The London Symphony Orchestra sends its deepest sympathy to Judith’s husband Nigel Hinds and their son Freddie, and our thoughts are with them at this difficult time.