Winning the Raymond Ffenell Prize at the Royal College of Music, he graduated with Distinction, studying Piano initially under Peter Element, and then with Cyril Smith, part of the well-known three-handed duo with wife, Phyllis Sellick, who died in May 2007 at the ripe old age of 95, Recorder with leading pedagogue, Freda Dinn, and Composition & Theory with Bryan Kelly.

While at the Royal College of Music, Philip  also  received coaching in Conducting from Owain Arwel Hughes, and additional Composition & Palaeography lessons from Dr Lloyd Ultan, a former Professor of Music at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.

Philip was born in Plymouth, Devon, and received his secondary education at one of the city's longest-serving grammar schools, Devonport High School for Boys, taking 'A' levels in Music, German and French. Click for a photo of the School Prefects, when Philip was in the Sixth Form! During this time he was also awarded an ABRSM Silver Medal at Grade 8 Piano, achieving the second highest marks in the country, in any practical subject.

He went on to study at Cambridge University, the Royal College of Music, Exeter University Institute of Education and later as an external student of Durham University - see Qualifications below.
Musician & Music Writer
Philip retired from full-time teaching in 1997, after more than twenty-five years in the secondary school sector, initially in Cornwall and then in Devon, and where he was especially involved in the use, and development of electronic keyboards in the class room. Opposite is the music room at Coombe Dean School, in Elburton, Plymouth, where Philip was Head of Music from 1984 - 1997. Now through his compositions and arrangements, he still maintains an involvement in school music-making, as this excerpt from Harrow Public School's magazine, The Harrovian, shows - and, to avoid any 'bias', another of his arrangements was also aired at Eton College!

Many years after the event, Philip recently received an email out of the blue from the grand-daughter of someone who had quite by chance come across a 45 rpm vinyl record which Philip had been involved in at his second school. Click for further information, with links to Save Our World and Wonderful Life.
He has appeared as concerto soloist with the Combined Orchestras of HM Royal Marines, Plymouth, on a number of occasions, and with the Devon County Youth Orchestra, and Concert Wind Band. He has also given piano recitals within the UK and abroad, together with radio and TV broadcasts, and was a national finalist in the Yamaha Electone Electronic Organ Competition.

Click to listen to Philip playing the Overture to Gilbert & Sullivan's opera, HMS Pinafore on his EL-90 organ, part of his presentation at the Trinity College, London Examiners' Conference in Peterborough, 2001.
Having conducted a number of choirs and operatic societies in the South West of England, Philip undertook a School-teacher Placement at the Royal Opera House, subsequently gaining a Certificate in Professional Development. In addition to private teaching, performing and composing, Philip contributes a weekly page and regular concert reviews for the Plymouth Herald, as well as providing programme notes for a number of organisations,  both in the local area and further afield. He has also written occasional reviews of music and music software, and articles for magazines like Devon Life.
He has worked as an examiner and syllabus consultant (Electronic Organ) with Trinity College London, and a Performance and Composition Moderator at GCSE Music. He has also contributed a book on the Piano Concertos of the Irish composer, John Field, to the Reference section of Plymouth Library Service.

In October 2002, Philip was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, reflecting his contribution to the promotion of classical music in the Plymouth local area, through his columns, articles and reviews at The Herald newspaper. Read Martin Freeman's feature-length interview with Philip - 'A noteworthy career at the keyboards' - The Herald, March 2010.
Philip R Buttall
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Devonport High School for Boys, Plymouth
Royal College of Music, London
Coombe Dean School, Elburton, Plymouth
Yamaha Electone EL-90
Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Royal Society of Arts
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He is a Fellow of Trinity College, London, the London College of Music, the Victoria College of Music (with Honours), and the National College of Music, in Piano Performing,

Philip is a Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music, the Guildhall School of Music, and an Associate of Trinity College, London, in Piano Performing.

He is also an Associate of the Royal College of Music, in Piano Teaching, where Philip also took, and was successful in passing the Special Harmony Paper.
Philip holds a Bachelor of Music (Honours) degree from the University of Durham, and is a Graduate of the Royal Schools of Music (with Distinction in the Written Papers), where his extended essay on The Romantic Piano Concerto received critical acclaim.

He has a Postgraduate Certificate in Education from the University of Exeter, where his research into Musical Ability and its relationship with Mathematical & Linguistic Ability formed part of the award. Philip also holds a Certificate of Professional Development (RSA).

Philip holds a Licentiate of Trinity College, London, in General Musicianship for Teachers.

In December 2007 he became an Associate of the London College of Music in Jazz Piano (Performing), attesting to his all-round ability, and his ongoing desire to keep his performing, and hence teaching skills at the forefront of current practice.

Philip also holds the Teacher's Certificate of the Society of Recorder Players.

In December 2006 Philip was awarded a Fellowship in Music of Trinity College, London, in Music Theory, Criticism and Literature, for his Dissertation on, and London Presentation of The Piano Writing & Formal Structure in the Piano Concertos of John Field (1782 - 1837), and their subsequent Influences. The research originated from a book (unpublished) on the Concertos, which Philip had previously contributed to the Reference section of Plymouth Library Service.

In January 2010 Philip gained the Diploma in Professional Freelance Journalism from the British College of Journalism.

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Music Department - University of Durham
Royal Academy of Music, London
Society of Recorder Players (Plymouth Branch)
John Field (1782 - 1837)