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Alexander, Meyrick (18 May 1952-Present)

Bassoonist who listened to The Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky at seven years of age and knew then and there what he wanted to do with his life.  He went to a lecture recital by Archie Camden and was encouraged to wait until he was eleven years old to begin formal lessons.

Sure enough, on his 11th birthday, he took his first lesson and was good enough to win scholarships to Clifton College and the Royal College of Music, where he studied under the watchful eye of Geoffrey Gambold.  He was also a member of the National Youth Orchestra.

In 1971, he joined the ranks of the Royal Ballet Orchestra, and stayed with them for two years before becoming second bassoon with the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra.  Around this time, he co-founded the Aquilo Wind Quintet.  He was principal bassoon of the Northern Sinfonia for a year until winning the same position with the Philharmonia in 1980, a post he held for thirty years.

Other groups with whom he has worked include Albion, Capricorn, the Classical Wind Quintet, the London Chamber Orchestra, the London Sinfonietta, the London Winds, the Nash Ensemble, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, and Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique.

He gave the world premiere of “Concerto for Four Bassoons” (“Hell’s Angels”) and the U.K. premiere of “Dead Elvis”, both composed by Michael Daugherty.  In 2000, Guy Woolfenden dedicated his “Bassoon Concerto” to him.

Recordings on which he appears comprise the 2005 soundtrack of Heidi, Chris Botti’s Italia, Les Nocturnes de Mozart, Vivaldi:  Concerti, and Wandering Bassoon, with piano accompaniment by Catherine Milledge.

In the field of music education, he has taught at the Birmingham Conservatoire, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, where he has been Head of the Woodwind department since 2010.  In 2016 he was the bassoon tutor in Lodz, Ventus Optimus and has coached the Ulster Youth Orchestra and the National Youth Orchestra of Wales.

Meyrick performs the bassoon here with the London Chamber Orchestra…