Bramwell Tovey's international conducting career began in 1986 when he stood in at short notice for the opening night of the London Symphpny Orchestra's Leonard Bernstein Festival. Bernstein himself was in the audience. The Financial Times described the occasion as ‘The sort of glittering opportunity young conductors dream about. He seized it with distinction.’
Since 1989 Bramwell has been resident in North America, initially as Artistic Director of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra where he founded the WSO's annual New Music Festival in 1992 and since 200, as Music Director of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. He recently completed a cycle of Borodin symphonies for CBC Records with the VSO and extended his contract as music director to 2010. In the 2004/05 season his guest engagements included the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony, Detroit Symphony, and Canada's National Arts Centre orchestras.
As a composer Bramwell Tovey won the 2003 Juno Award, Best Canadian Classical Composition for Requiem for a Charred Skull for chorus and brass band. He has written concertos for cello, viola, and brass quintet and orchestra. He wrote the orchestral score and performed as solo pianist for the feature film eighteen, starring Ian Mckellan and Alan Cumming, released in 2005.
He is a fellow of the Royal Academy of Music and the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and in 2006 became Artistic Director of the National YOuth Brass Band of Great Britain. He regularly conducts some of the world's best brass bands. The Night To Sing was commissioned by the British Open Brass Band Championship for the contest of September 2005.