contrabassoonist and educator from London,
who grew up in Woodford, Essex, and studied the piano and recorder. He started playing bassoon at ten
years of age and took formal studies at the Redbridge Music School
and the Royal College of Music, where he took up the contrabassoon. His teachers included John Burness and Geoffrey Gambold,
a pair of principal players from the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
He played with
the Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra for four years and a half and made
his professional debut with the Ulster Orchestra at twenty-two years of
age. Other groups with whom he
has worked include the Britten Sinfonia, the Nash
Ensemble, the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House,
Covent Garden, and the Philharmonia Orchestra of London.
In 1991, he
appeared on the soundtrack of Atlantis. Other recordings on which he appears
comprise Miss Saigon and Scratch My Back, by Peter Gabriel.
He and his
fellow Philharmonia bassoonists descended
on-stage at Queen Elizabeth Hall donned as bikers for a performance of
Michael Daugherty’s “Hell’s Angel’s” on 22nd
March 1999. The concert was
rounded out by Daugherty’s “Dead Elvis”, plus more
conventional fare such as Felix Mendelssohn’s “The Fair Melusine”, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s
“Violin Concerto No. 5” (“Turkish”) and Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s “Symphony No.
September 2004, the Britten Sinfonia appeared at
the Victoria & Albert Museum
in a program that comprised Luigi’s Dallapiccola’s
“Piccola musica notturna”, Simon Holt’s “The
Coroner’s Report”, Leos Janacek’s
“Concertino”, and Bohuslav Martinu’s “Le revue de cuisine”.
Sir Charles Mackerras conducted the Philharmonia
on 6th April 2008 in a concert that included Johannes
Brahms’ “Symphony No. 3 in F major, Op. 90”,
Mozart’s “Piano Concerto No. 18 in B flat major, K. 456”,
with soloist Till Fellner, and Richard
Strauss’s Also sprach Zarathustra.
October 2008, Gordon joined the Nash Ensemble for a recital at Wigmore Hall that featured Brahms’
“Serenade in D, Op. 4”, Antonin
Dvorak’s “Serenade in D minor, Op. 44”, and Josef Suk’s “Piano Quartet No. 1 in A
Lorin Maazel conducted the Philharmonia
on 30th November 2009 at the Grand Auditorium in a performance
of Zoltan Kodaly’s “Danses de Galanta”,
Modest Mussorgsky’s Pictures at
an Exhibition, and Tchaikovsky’s “Piano Concerto No. 1 in B
flat major, Op. 23”, with Simon Trpceski at
March 2010, Riccardo Muti
took the helm and Joshua Bell was the featured soloist as the Philharmonia offered up a Beethoven double-header that
consisted of the master’s “Violin Concerto in D major, Op.
61” and “Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55” (“Eroica”).
In the field
of musical education, Gordon has taught at the Guildhall School of Music
and Drama and has served as a tutor at Big Bassoon Day and Gloucestershire
Double Reed Day. His students
have included Sebastian Charlesworth, Maria
Harper, Danielle Hartley, Jacqueline Hayter,
Dieter Hester, Adam Treverton Jones, Michael
Kent, Kati May Lawrence, Molly Neilson, Ruth Rosales, Stuart Russell, Emma
Selby, Neil Strachan, and Joanna Shewan.
He also has a
chapter devoted to him in the 2010 book, British Classical Bassoonists.