Leslie Bresnen was born and educated in the Wirral. After graduating in Music at Birmingham University in 1962 he began his teaching career at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School for Boys, Mansfield. He moved to York in 1971 to take up the post of Head of Music at Queen Anne Grammar School – a position he held (prior to and following reorganization) for twenty-three years.
After succumbing to the temptations of early retirement in 1994 he now enjoys a more leisurely existence in which important sporting activities (chess, bridge, bowls and golf) mix comfortably with the occasional conducting commitment.
He is currently Musical Director of Newton Ladies’ Choir and Assistant Conductor of York Musical Society. In this latter capacity he has recently directed performances of Verdi’s Requiem and Handel’s Messiah in York Minster.
Leslie was principal Musical Director of York Opera for twenty years (1975-95), conducting in that time over 30 productions, including Nabucco , Faust , Aida , Carmen and Turandot . A particularly notable achievement was the presentation in 1990 of the world première of Rich Claus, Poor Claus by Hans Gál, under his direction.
He was conductor of the YSO from 1995 to 2002.