Stephen began learning the saxophone at the age of 12 after starting piano four years earlier. He graduated from the Royal College of Music in 2014 with a Masters in Music in Performance (MMus in Performance) studying Saxophone with Kyle Horch, having previously studied with Dr. Angela Space at the University of Southampton for a BA(Hons) in Music. Following his studies Stephen successfully auditioned to join the Corps of Army Music and, after undertaking further training at the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall where he was awarded a Cousins Parchment for performance, he was appointed Principal Saxophonist with the Band of the Scots Guards in 2015. He recently won the ‘CAMUS 25 Soloist Competition’ against soloists from across the entire Corps, having won the Household Division's ‘Young Musician of the Year’ Competition in 2017.
As a saxophonist Stephen has experience across all genres, regularly giving classical and jazz recitals, most notably performing the concerto version of Pedro Itturalde's Pequena Czarda with the Number One Band of the Household Division at Cadogan Hall and Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Two Memorials at the Purcell Rooms as part of “The Rest is Noise” festival.
He regularly features as a soloist with the Band of the Scots Guards, and with the Army has performed at the Royal Albert Hall, has played live on ITV, BBC 1, most recently as a featured soloist in the 2019 Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, and on BBC Radio 3's 'In Tune' with the Household Division's Saxophone Quartet. He has also performed at Bestival and the Isle of Wight Festival, and played at the Montreaux Jazz Festival, as well as venues such as The O2, Turner Sims Concert Hall, St. James's Piccadilly, The Forge, Camden, and Symphony Hall Birmingham, and abroad in Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland, and Holland.
Stephen is a keen ensemble player, playing Baritone Saxophone in one of the finest emerging saxophone quartets in the UK, the Laefer Quartet (www.laeferquartet.com). The quartet are Park Lane Group Artists, Making Music Selected Artists, and were awarded the Elias Fawcett Award for an Outstanding Ensemble in the 2017 Royal Over-Seas League competition. In 2017 they performed at the Three Palaces Festival in Malta and St John’s Smith Square, they made their Wigmore Hall debut in 2018, and their Purcell Room debut earlier this year to a sold out audience. He is also Tenor Saxophonist in the Household Division Saxophone Quartet whose performing highlights include the world premiere of Adam Gorb's Let Them Play at the World Saxophone Congress in Zagreb, and Thierry Escaich’s Tango Virtuoso with choreography at Cadogan Hall.
Stephen has given masterclasses and workshops at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, and the University of Southampton.