Stephen Roberts received his first music lessons from Sir Harrison Birtwistle who encouraged him to take up the horn. He studied with Alan Civil at the Royal College of Music and went on to take a PhD in composition at the University of Birmingham.
Stephen was a founder member of the Fine Arts Brass Ensemble with whom he gave over two thousand concerts in over sixty countries, as well as scores of broadcasts and CD recordings. His numerous arrangements, which were a unique feature of the ensemble, are now performed by ensembles and bands around the world. His brass band arrangement of Holst's Planets Suite, recorded by the Black Dyke Band, was used as the test piece for the 2003 British Open Brass Band Championship.
In 2000 Stephen left the ensemble to devote more time to composing and conducting. His compositions have been played at major festivals, and on BBC Radio 3, by the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Britten Sinfonia, the Bochmann Quartet and various other orchestras and ensembles. He also writes occasional commercial music for film and television. In 2002 he wrote and conducted the theme and incidental music for the six-part Carlton TV series "The Real Brassed Off", featuring the Desford Colliery Band. This was made into a feature album by EMI Records.
In 2002 Stephen became Professor of Music at the Royal Military School of Music, London, and in 2004 was also appointed Associate Conductor of the English Symphony Orchestra.