SHEFFIELD ELECTRONIC MUSIC PIONEER returns to his old school

Cabaret Voltaire member Steve Mallinder was quizzed by children at St Wilfrid's in Millhouses when he visited his old school
Cabaret Voltaire member Steve Mallinder was quizzed by children at St Wilfrid's in Millhouses when he visited his old school

AN OLD boy of St Wilfrid’s RC Primary School in Millhouses popped back to share his memories.

Pupils were too young to remember the heyday of Cabaret Voltaire, one of Britain’s most influential electronic bands, but they eagerly interviewed ex-member Steve Mallinder.

And the memories came flooding back for him.

Wistfully looking outside, he said: “I remember playing left back there and scoring from my own penalty box. We won 14-nil.

“I can’t remember who we were playing, maybe St Marie’s …”

After the group last released a studio album in 1990, Steve moved to Australia for several years, writing and producing material but also teaching.

He said it was partially St Wilfrid’s that stirred his imagination to travel.

“I remember back in the day I used to love geography and we had this teacher who told us all about this exciting new place called Australia.

“Maybe that was part of the reason I made the move there.”

Steve now lives in Brighton, where he teaches, and he has gained a PhD in music, but he has retained a love of Sheffield and fond memories of his school. “When I was there it was outstanding but now it’s official!

“It was really weird but very flattering to see their topic books with pictures of me in the pages.”

He added: “When we first started making all this strange electronic music, nobody seemed interested, but it’s fantastic to see it written about by kids in 30 years’ time.”

Headteacher Barbara Jarrett said: “He was really good with the children. They asked some very intelligent and probing questions and Steve treated them with a real maturity.”

On which pop stars she would be inviting next to the school, she replied: “I’m not sure. Enrique Iglesias or The Editors would be my preference but all are welcome!”