Mike Brewer is out of jail

Mike Brewer is out of jail


norman lebrecht

February 09, 2016

We have been informed that the former director of music at Chetham’s walked free this week after serving three years of a six-year sentence for indecent assault of a girl pupil.

The complainant, Frances Andrade, died during his trial.

Brewer, 70, has never admitted the offence nor expressed regret.

mike brewer



  • Philip Hoy says:

    May I point out that Francis Andrade didn’t simply die during Brewer’s trial but committed suicide. That he has been freed after just three years will be a cause of distress to all of this vile man’s victims.

  • Frank Chalmers says:

    Please be cautious about the response to Brewer coming out half way through the prison sentence. This is the normal formular of half in prison half under licence ( note this) in the community. He is still serving his sentence under licence and he will be subject to several conditions and assessments. I don’t know specific conditions. But probation will dynamically risk assess him, have him report for supervision and perhaps require him to under go some programs. Has he developed insight into his crimes or remorse? What are the risks to similar victims in the present and future? Brewer is still serving his sentence and call be recalled to prison for breaches of his licence.

    • will says:

      Why do we have to be ‘cautious’ about commenting on a convicted monster? he wasn’t ‘cautious’ was he?

    • Becky says:

      Been reading this stuff for years – since a crime which affected my family got me reading up and you’ve summed it up very clearly. Actually, you reassure meon the matter of a person who is due to come up for similar – perhaps since he has already breached a suspended sentence he won’t get early release?

  • John Saxon says:

    Why can’t people just let it go? Always baying for more blood. He’s been sentenced by due process of law, his reputation shattered, and served (indeed still ‘is’ serving) his sentence. It was expected when he went in that he’d only serve half the time if he behaved himself, as that’s the way it’s done, so why all the exasperation now? The prisons are full, and without a shred of doubt there’s thousands of people out there who should be in there that are far more genuine and current dangers to people in all kinds of ways, including young people, than Brewer now is. As for Frances Andrade, she appeared to have all kinds of issues well before Brewer got to her, and nobody but her could possibly say how much those or her experiences with Brewer were responsible for her issues later in life. And who killed her? The trauma of legal proceedings, which a well-meaning (??) friend pushed for, killed her. Didn’t bring her a lot of peace or resolution did it? She needed a therapist, and Brewer needed a compulsory victim awareness course.The heavy hand of the law appears to bring nothing but trauma and further neuroses all round on the topic of ‘sex offending’, the witchery of our age.

  • Dr Alastair Bint says:

    A comment to John Saxon. Your email has been brought to my attention. I was the GP for Frances Andrade and your armchair commentary offends me and offends her memory. How dare you sit their and judge. Dr Alastair Bint.

  • Brian Ferguson says:

    I have just seen this thread but am aware of the circumstances. The loss of Mrs Andrade’s life was obviously tragic. Mr Brewer has been punished (clearly for some the punishment was not enough) and I want to say this. Through his pioneering work with the National Youth Choirs, he undoubtedly inspired and helped hundreds of aspiring singers. I speak as a father of one such singer….so although he now seems destined to be demonised, I for one shall always be grateful for his work.

    • Nick Rowsell says:

      Good for you … your experience with Mr Brewer was obviously a positive one … all that tells me is you’re easily swayed by a manipulative sadistic interloper whom showed you nothing but his best side

  • Reuben Trotter says:

    Let the one without sin cast the first stone. He was convicted and punished, the lady sadly had to go through hell and back and who knows, he has to live with his conscience. So, no system is perfect and we all come short, but give credit where it is due. Mike Brewer is a phenomenal musician and a great choir conductor-ask me who has experienced his skill first hand!

    • Brian Ferguson says:

      Time slips by. The dead cannot return. Mike Brewer’s life is ruined. The cruel, cruel irony of this is that if Mrs Andrade had not been put on the witness stand, she would probably be alive today. There are no winner’s in this case, none at all. To that extent I agree with Mr Trotter.

    • Nick Rowsell says:

      I’m a shit hot stone carver with no equal or contemporaries … so as I contribute to society in a positive sense does that mean I can abuse and destroy people … your empathy and your condoning of these offences are pathetic and derisory … shame

  • Kay Robinson says:

    Both of my daughters belonged to the NYC under the direction of Mr Brewer. Neither of them ever came to any harm in his care and benefitted greatly from their membership.
    I very much regret the whole legal circus surrounding his conviction. He will suffer for the rest of his life for whatever did or didn’t happen. We live in an era comparable to the Salem witch trials.

    • Brian Ferguson says:

      I am 100% in agreement with you, Kay….and although Mike Brewer will have to live the rest of his life with a cloud over him, that curse also applies to others, such as whoever prompted an unstable woman (Andrade) to pursue him in Court, Brewer’s attorney who put Andrade through the mill when she was in the witness box and Andrade’s advisers. Will they suffer as much as Brewer? I doubt it.And you are 100% right….time to move on.

      • James Macintosh says:

        Idiot man. Mrs Andrade did not ‘pursue him in court’, she was an accidental bystander. She was in fact proactively contacted by the Police because they were investigating a historical sex abuse claim. She didn’t want any of the attention. She was married with children and had tried to get on with her life and for no fault of her own she was interrogated, chosen by the CPS as a witness, taken to the witness box, aggressively taken apart by defence barristers in Court and she watched as her life crumbled. She was a victim and your armchair defence of Brewer without even knowing the facts is offensive.

    • Ken says:

      It’s as if you think it didn’t happen. In the Salem witch trials, the women weren’t actually witches! Idiot.

  • Emily Orchard says:

    There are in fact huge numbers of winners – people who will stop themselves from committing such offences in the future, having seen so many excellent musical minds falling into ruin and disrepute, branded as sexual predators in the present; young people who will be less fearful of speaking out about abuse they have faced themselves, who will be able to access the therapy they require to move past their damaging experiences and forward with their lives; ever more vulnerable children who will be made aware at a younger age that this sort of behaviour from someone in a position of trust is something that they will be praised for bringing to light, protected rather than persecuted; more families normalising conversations about sex to arm children with the knowledge they need to prevent this kind of exploitation and abuse.

    Yes, he inspired many and to many came across as a very nice man. But we must be aware that people who have charm, people who are inspiring by nature, can on the flip side be incredibly persuasive people who may use that power of persuasion not only for good cause.

  • Al says:

    “came across as a very nice man” – that was part of his disguise. The same man let that disguise slip at Latymer School when he hit a pupil across the head causing it to slam into an upright piano during a lesson. The signs were there. Those who suggest his musical skills somehow compensate for his behaviour or that bringing him to “justice” was to blame for the victim’s death should have a serious look at themselves.

  • Kate says:

    I may be a little late to this conversation but I feel I need to say this.

    To blame the victim – particularly in circumstances where a court of law found this man guilty – is absolutely unacceptable. No ifs or buts.

    Your subjective opinion over whether someone is mentally stable enough or not to judge their own circumstances is completely moot.

    Heck, I took part in a choral workshop where Mr. Brewer conducted when AI was younger, and my 14-year-old self didn’t see anything dodgy either – but that doesn’t for one minute mean that people cannot unpleasantly surprise you.
    Truly, the day we live our lives on the terms of abusers is the day we’re ALL screwed, I think.

    Yet again, circumstances where a victim receives more scrutiny than a perpetrator who should rightly hang their heads in shame should not have any rightful place in our society.

  • Frank Patersson says:

    Al above (June 26, 2019) surely hits the nail on the head and his comment ought to put Brewer’s apologists here to shame. Obviously that won’t happen as their heads have been turned by their own self-righteous lack of sensibility and sensitivity, and the blind stupidity of irresponsible others on this thread.

    My younger daughter was a member of the National Youth Choir until some time in the early 1990s. Her mother (ex-wife) let slip one day that our daughter was finished with the choir. No reason given, but my suspicions were raised upon a renewed hearing of Brewer’s treatment of favoured pupils. (His reputation in this regard was common knowledge in the 1980s) She (ex-wife) would have known that if I had got wind of any wrongdoing by Brewer I would have headed straight to Manchester and inflicted physical damage on him. To this day, I don’t know what caused my daughter’s departure from the choir which she loved being a part of, but I could read between the lines. Brewer’s sympathisers here clearly have no shame and no conscience, which makes threm as bad as their “hero”.

  • Michael Spencer says:

    This comment is added, somewhat belatedly, as a bit of background information to help complete the view of Brewer which readers may form.

    In 1967-8, I was a pupil at a then all-boys’ grammar school in the London Borough of Havering, Essex. Brewer was the Music Teacher.

    In return for my cheeky contribution to the music lesson in progress – I gave my score in a music test as “sex” rather than “six”, having just had a Latin lesson – I was slapped hard in the face by Brewer. Believing this to have been my fault, of course, I neither said or did anything about it, then or later.

    I was one of many pupils who were given a wood block or scraper when others who could read music and play an instrument were encouraged and supported, becoming Brewer’s acolytes.

    Brewer went on to great things, but that has to be seen in a real context.