David was born in Ireland and received his earliest musical training in the Salvation Army. He studied music at Queen's University Belfast and for many years was Director of Music at Campbell College Belfast. In 2016, following a decision to write full-time, he was appointed the College’s first Composer in Residence – a position he still holds in 2020.
From the 1990s David’s choral music was published in the USA, initially by Shawnee Press, Warner Bros. and Belwin Mills, followed by a long collaboration with Alfred Publishing in California. In total over 100 choral works are in print between these US publishers and SP&S Ltd in the UK.
David has had extensive practical experience leading Salvation Army bands and currently conducts the band at Belfast Temple. His interest in arranging for brass band has resulted in around 30 works for band being published in London and New York.
Being a Director of Music involves rehearsing and performing daily and this experience has resulted in an intimate knowledge of what works (and what doesn't work!) So, you can be assured that any music offered on this website has been well and truly tested and will be effective items whether written for full choir, children's voices, bands, ensembles or soloists. As many summers were spent as the guest composer/conductor in Music Camps in Canada and the USA he is also familiar with the American systems and structures.
Many soloists have requested music to be written for them and soloists who have featured David's solos on their CDs include the cornet virtuosi David Daws, Roger Webster, Philip Smith and Gordon Ward and two legendary euphonium players Derrick Kane and Stephen Mead. In addition bands that have recorded David’s music include The New York Staff Band, Williams Fairey Band, the International Staff Band and the Canadian, Chicago and Amsterdam Staff Bands.
Opus 3 Music
In 2003 Opus 3 music was set up, initially to publish educational music, now to reflect the increasing demand for digital downloads this new website - davidcatherwoodmusic.com - brings together much of David’s instrumental, choral and educational music in one place and also integrates with Hal Leonards Sheetmusicplus (This online resource is provided by Hal Leonard Corporation -the largest music publisher in the world - so you can order with complete confidence knowing any music ordered will be delivered instantly to your computer and ready to print.)