Mrs Janet Canetty-Clarke

ICE Panel Tutor

Janet Canetty-Clarke's life has been intertwined throughout with music, and she now passes on her love and understanding of the subject to her students at ICE and elsewhere. Educated in Folkestone, she won a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music, London, and obtained her B.Mus. degree from London University before she was twenty-one. Musical engagements in Surrey led to a happy marriage, with a son and daughter, and to a move to Sussex where she soon became involved in the musical life of South-East England. Appointed Conductor and Musical Director of the Ditchling Choral Society (now called Sussex Chorus) for over thirty-seven years, together they performed most of the major choral works, with prestigious soloists and orchestras. A highlight was their performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Josephine Barstow soprano, Anthony Rolfe-Johnson tenor and Brian Rayner Cook baritone.

Janet has been made Conductor Emeritus of the Choir, and joined them to celebrate their 90th season in July 2011 in the Dome, Brighton.

Up to the unexpected closure of Sussex University’s Centre for Community Engagement in 2012, Janet has tutored 20-week courses and Day Schools for over 30 years, together with popular classes for the WEA, U3A and individual lectures for London University (Birkbeck College), study weekends for Cambridge University held at Madingley Hall, and classes for Aspire (Sussex) Ltd today. In 1984 she was appointed as a lecturer for the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Societies which she continues to enjoy today, visiting centres at home and abroad and touring Australia in 1994 and 2001, and South Africa in 1997. In 1984 Janet was appointed Guest Conductor of the First All-Women Chamber Orchestra of Austria, and gave concerts in Vienna and Sussex for over fifteen years.

Janet's wealth of knowledge makes her classes a treasure trove for students. Digitally presented and illustrated with musical examples on piano or keyboard, alongside recordings, the courses encourage lively discussion amongst participants. Whether it is linking music and painting, or shining a light on opera, Janet's classes make the mysteries of music accessible to all. One of her more popular lectures is 'Hogarth, Handel and Captain Coram's foundling hospital, from the 18th century to the present day.'

Courses Taught

Past Courses


  • ARAM, Royal Academy of Music
  • BMus, London University
  • GRSM- Music, Royal Schools of Music
  • LRAM - Piano, Royal Academy of Music
  • ARCM - Performers, Royal College of Music

Associations and memberships

The Incorporated Society of Musicians, and was made warden of the Performers and Composers Section, 2000-2001.

Research Topics

Research conducted at the Britten-Pears Library, Aldeburgh, Summer 2011, in preparation for a study day on "Pipers and Tune: John and Myfanwy Piper and the music of Bejamin Britten" held at the Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne, Sussex on Saturday, 24 September 2011.

Intensive research during 2013, resulted in a printed leaflet issued in 2014 entitled ‘Music linked to Painting’ lectures by Janet Canetty-Clarke. This contains information on 13 lectures all presented in digital format, to be illustrated on a piano or keyboard, if available, together with recorded music.

In 2016, Janet has issued another printed leaflet entitled 'A Day at the Opera with Janet Canetty-Clarke' reflecting the popularity of the many 'live operas' being shown in cinemas across the country. These are transmitted by satellite from the Metropolitan Opera House, New York, and Janet has recently brought together a group of music lovers in Sussex to meet and study the backgrounds of the operas before they attend the performances. The name of the group is Orphic Arts, and it promises to be very popular, with high enrolment.

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