Mat Wright MBE

Mat has worked in education 25 years, working as an Advanced Skills Teacher, Vice Principal, Advisory Teacher and, most recently, as a Regional Director of an Education Trust overseeing 27 primary and secondary schools throughout England. He has been a guest lecturer at colleges and universities and has delivered at national conferences as well as taking part in International Research visits for the UK Government.

Mat is Artistic Director and founder of Barnsley Youth Choir, a charity that has 650 members aged 0 – 24 years old in an area of significant deprivation. The choir has been successful in international competitions winning 8 categories and 3 Grand Prix in major competitions such as the World Choir Games and European Choir Games, and was been awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in 2017. BYC is the highest ranked choir from Great Britain in the Interkultur World Rankings and has developed a strong international reputation. Mat has worked as a member of the jury in a number of competitions including the World Choir Games in 2016 (Sochi) and 2018 (Pretoria), and the Virtual World Choir Festival 2021 (Indonesia) and has worked internationally as a clinician, workshop leader and guest conductor, including work in Spain, France, South Korea, Russia, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Germany, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Ireland as well as engagements throughout the UK. He was the Artistic Director for the recent Hull International Competition featuring over 1000 singers from across the world.

He is a representative for Great Britain on the World Choir Council and was appointed as a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) by the Queen in 2020 for his services to young people and music. In 2022 Mat also became an Honorary Freeman of Barnsley in recognition of his work within the local community. Mat has experience of working with many different types of choirs and is passionate about supporting choirs of all ages and abilities. Whilst he is comfortable working in many genres of music, he has a reputation for arranging and performing high quality popular, gospel and spiritual music and is in demand as a composer and arranger. He is passionate about the use of singing as a mechanism to engage, connect and transform communities.