Brenda graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music, where she won the Hilary Haworth Memorial Prize and the Harriet Cohen Silver Medal. Teaching at the college part time was followed by marriage to John Ogdon in 1960.

Brenda has taught consistently throughout her life with John, in addition to performing in public and making records. Later teaching experience includes assistant professorship to her husband at Indiana University (1976-1980) and teaching at Eton College (1980-1985).

Brenda is a member of the Incorporated Society of Musicians, through which she has also completed a police CRB check, enabling her to become a recommended tutor , under the terms of the ISM.