Pianist, organist and composer, Christopher Howell was born in London in 1953. He began to study the piano at the age of nine and gave his first solo recital in 1971, while still at school. His teachers during this time included Alexander Kelly and Else Cross, both professors at the Royal Academy of Music.
There followed a period at Edinburgh University where his piano teacher was Colin Kingsley. Other tutors included Kenneth Leighton and John Clapham. During this period he performed regularly as soloist and in chamber groups and also formed and conducted a small choir, with which he presented music by Stanford and Dufay.
In 1975 he obtained a scholarship to study in Milan with the celebrated Hungarian teacher Ilonka Deckers-Küszler. He is now settled in Italy.
As a composer he conducted a Psalm setting of his own at the age of 14 and has recently become active again after a long hiatus. He frequently writes pieces for the musicians with whom he collaborates. He works regularly in Italy with singers and instrumentalists.
While performing a wide range of standard repertoire, Christopher Howell has made a particular study of the British repertoire. He has recorded works by Sterndale Bennett, Bache, Stanford and Scott for Swiss-Italian Radio in Lugano, a CD of music by Cyril Scott (for Tremula) and another dedicated to Harold Craxton, which includes songs (sung by Caroline Goodwin, soprano, and James McOran Campbell, baritone) and cello pieces (with Alison Moncrieff Kelly) as well as solo works. This disc was commissioned by the Craxton family. He has also written the article on Craxton for the forthcoming new edition of the New Dictionary of National Biography. A CD containing the two cello sonatas and "Ballata" by Stanford, also with Alison Moncrieff Kelly, will be shortly released by Meridian.
An avid devourer of records, record reviews and the record scene generally since his early teens, Christopher Howell has been enjoying his new "hobby" of record reviewing since he began writing for the site a few years ago.