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Soundbites & Masterclasses

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Sunday 28th April

ANDREW ROBLEY • Songs of Love and Romance

Andrew Robley’s first TV appearance was in From Praise to Pop and at the age of 17 he won the BBC Radio Search for a Star competition. With a career in both theatre and concerts and as a Headline Entertainer on Cruise Ships he has been able to see some of the most amazing places in the world. He is one of the resident Headliners at Brick Lane Music Hall in London and is a very proud member of the Grand Order of Water Rats. Andrew was bestowed the award “Worldwide Entertainer of the Year” and very proudly sang for the Coronation of King Charles III.

Laurence Payne (piano) studied trombone and piano at the Royal Academy of Music. His theatrical career includes countless pantomimes, and also Music Hall tours with Hiss & Boo Company and the Paper Moon Theatre. Laurence was resident musical director and arranger at London’s Brick Lane Music Hall. He has travelled all over Britain with shows ranging from Rock n’ Roll compilations to the very English Salad Days and as far afield as Hong Kong.

Tickets: £16 Members: £14

The Ballroom, Budworth Hall, High Street, Ongar CM5 9JG • Ongar Music Club is a Registered Charity No. 273185

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Sunday 19th May 2024

Yvonne Howard mezzo-soprano • Peter O’Connor flute • Philip Sunderland piano

We are thrilled to welcome Yvonne Howard, Peter O’Connor and Philip Sunderland who will present a delightful Spring programme of duets and trios.

Staffordshire born Yvonne Howard has enjoyed a full and varied career which has taken her to concert and opera stages worldwide, from Japan, Brazil, USA, Argentina, and all over Europe as well as the UK. In the UK she has regularly appeared with the Royal Opera, ENO, Opera North, Scottish Opera and has played many diverse rôles from Lady Macbeth to Aunt Nettie in Carousel. On the concert platform Yvonne has sung in all of the major venues in recital and oratorio. (the latter also taking her to some of our most magnificent cathedrals and churches.) Always having had an interest in working with young people, Yvonne spent several years teaching at the Royal Academy of Music, but more recently has returned to her alma mater, the Royal Northern College of Music, here she finds that being able to give back to the place that launched your own career is especially rewarding.

Peter O’Connor was born in Liverpool where he studied flute with Judy Fenton as a winner of a City of Liverpool Scholarship, before gaining a place at the Royal Northern College of Music. Peter has worked with most of the major orchestras in England and Scotland and along with Mary Morley formed Rubato, a flute and harp duo to great critical acclaim. Alan Ridout’s Sonata for Flute and Harp is written for them. He has recorded both for radio and television and can frequently be heard playing flute in TV series such as Frost, House of Cards, and numerous TV and Radio adverts He has played in many west end shows, including Aspects of Love, Brigadoon, The Sound of Music. He has worked extensively with the London Concert Orchestra, London Pops Orchestra, and BBC Concert Orchestra. Peter is an experienced and committed flute teacher, teaching at Kings College School, Cambridge.

Philip Sunderland is a Norwich boy. Educated at the Royal Academy of Music and the National Opera Studio, he has conducted numerous operas for Opera North and English Touring Opera. He was music director to W11 Opera for Young People and to Swansea City Opera. His second opera, The Glass Knight, was performed at Saffron Hall. He has just finished a stint as Head of Vocal Faculty Opera at the RAM.

Doors open at 2:30pm
Ticket price: £16.00 (Members: £14.00) • Price includes afternoon tea

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Tuesday 26th March 2024

TOM CARRADINE • Old Time Music-Hall

Mr. Tom Carradine on the Ol’ Joanna leads you in a traditional Cockney sing-a-long. With songs from the music hall era, WWI and WWII, the West End stage and popular songs from across the decades, it’s a good old-fashioned knees-up!

Born out of the impromptu late-night sing-a-longs at the Twinwood Festival, since its launch in 2014, Carradine’s Cockney Sing-a-long has been a fixture on the UK’s vintage scene, playing sell-out dates in the main auditorium at Wilton’s Music Hall, every Thursday at Mr Fogg’s Tavern in Covent Garden and for vintage festivals, corporate events and private parties across the country and in Europe.

Tom Carradine, pianist, entertainer and Music Hall aficionado, decided that he wanted to capture the flavour and atmosphere of a good old-fashioned knees-up in the grand Cockney tradition and recreate it for audiences young and old.

Doors open at 2:30pm.
The Budworth Hall, High Street, Ongar CM5 9JG

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Sunday 25th February

CYRUS YUEN violin • Winner of the EYMY Norman Harper Prize 2023

Cyrus Yuen is a London-based violinist from Hong Kong. He began his violin studies at the age of 5, and has performed in Asia, Europe and America as a soloist, recitalist and a chamber musician. He is currently at student of Professor Stephanie Gonley at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Recent performances include the Brahms Violin Concerto and the Wieniawski Faust Fantasy with the Sewanee Festival Orchestra in the USA. Cyrus was also featured in a masterclass with Tasmin Little CBE. He has been awarded the ‘EYMT Norman Harper Prize’ and is supported with generous sponsorships by the Essex Young Musican Trust and the Brain and Julie Cue Trust.

Kwanyee Chan is a Hong Kong-born pianist. After her undergraduate studies in her native city during which she was presented the CCA Artistic Excellence Award, she completed her masters degree at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London where she studied with Lucy Parham. She has been broadcast on RTHK Radio 4 and has performed internationally at venues such as the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Barbican Centre’s Milton Court in London. She is also a laureate of various international competitions with honours including the 1st prize in the 2016 Hong Kong Youth Music Competition, 2nd prize at the 2016 Liszt Memorial Prize International Piano Competition and 3rd place in the 2021 Coulson and Purely Festival Piano Concerto Competition.

Wilbert Chan is a Hong Kong-born British cellist who has performed in Asia, Europe and North America. He has participated in chamber music festivals in the USA, Italy, Germany, Austria and Bulgaria. In recent years, he has also served as cellist in the Durham String Quartet and principal cellist in the Durham University Orchestral Society. He has previously studied with Richard Bamping, Judith Serkin and Josef Luitz in HK, the USA and Vienna. He has also played in masterclasses by Jamie Walton and Jonathan Aasgaard. He is currently a student of Professor Tim Lowe at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and his studies are generously supported by the Guildhall School Trust.

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Sunday 28th January 2024

Simeon Wood • Multi-Instrumentalist

Simeon Wood was born in Yorkshire and started playing the flute at the age of 8. After 10 years he won a place to study at Trinity College of Music, London, where his performance and composition skills were honed.

In the intervening years he has enjoyed performing all over the world playing on an ever-increasing array of instruments, all with unique sounds. “My work as an itinerant musician has led me to play in extraordinary venues. From caves to castles, palaces to giant redwood forests as well as the more conventional festivals, cruise ships, halls, theatres and art centres. Added to this Simeon released his twelfth solo album in 2021 entitled “Feeling Good”.

When he’s not touring he is regularly commissioned to write music for television and theatre productions.

His first foray into theatre was during his time as music director for “Empty Hat Theatre Company” in the early 90s. A more recent project saw him compose music to accompany five audiobooks for Ronald McDonald House.

Television – Simeon has had a wealth of experience writing incidental and signature tunes. Subjects include food and drink, current affairs, pets, gardening, travel and history. Just recently his playing backed Mr Bean (Rowan Atkinson) acting the part of a rather lack lustre Ninja Warrior advertising Snickers bars.

Doors open at 2:30pm.
The Budworth Hall, High Street, Ongar CM5 9JG

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Sunday 10th December 2023 • 3pm

Christmas Cracker!

Join us for a Christmas celebration of live music and plenty of laughter, all served up with a seasonal afternoon tea, mince pies and mulled wine. A chance to chat, make new friends and join in the Christmas cheer! Bring your party hats!!

Founder members of the wonderful Redbridge Youth Choir will lead the singing with many seasonal favourites. They will be joined by the soprano Helen Miles and violinist Jane Miller.

Doors open at 2:30pm.

Tickets available in advance from Ticketsource (search Ongar Music Club)

If you wish to reserve a ticket at the door, please call our box office on 07970 791945

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Sunday 19th November 2023 • 3pm

Janet Fairlie and Piano à Deux

Join us on Sunday 19th November at 3.00pm for a chance to spend some quality time listening to fabulous live music, enjoying a delicious tea, making new friends and re-connecting with the community.

Award winning Scottish Soprano Janet Fairlie will delight us with her beautiful voice and engaging humour. Janet will be joined by the globe trotting ‘Piano À Deux’ - Linda Ang Stoodley and Robert Stoodley.

Doors open at 2:30pm.
The Budworth Hall, High Street, Ongar CM5 9JG

Tickets are available from TicketSource in advance: Alternatively go to and search ‘Ongar Music Club’. 
If you wish to reserve a ticket at the door, please call our box office on 07970 791945

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PIano à Deux

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Sunday 1st October 2023 • 1:30pm

Tasmin Little CBE – Violin Masterclass

Ongar Music Club is delighted to announce that it will be presenting a Violin Masterclass given by Tasmin Little CBE on October 1st 2023.

Please contact the Chairman to obtain further details, and to register an interest to participate:

The masterclass is open to the public, and there will be a limited number of tickets available on the door. Tickets can be purchased ahead of the day by using this link Alternatively go to and search ‘Ongar Music Club’.  All-day tickets are priced at £15 (£10 for under-18s), or £5 (evening recital only). Refreshments will be available throughout the event. Doors open at 1 pm.
If you wish to reserve a ticket at the door, please call our box office on 07970 791945

Potential applicants can find more details on the handbill below.

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Masterclass – Applicant Information

Applicant information for the masterclass with Tasmin Little CBE.

Please note that the closing date for applications is now 18th September 2023.

Please note that applicants must have lived or studied in the county of Essex. This includes any town or village that was part of Essex prior to 1965. Also villages or towns which straddle the Essex border and which have an Essex-based postcode will qualify.

Please click here to download this PDF.

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Sunday 10th September 2023 • 4pm

Tom Hodgkinson, guitar
Essex Young Musician of the Year 2022

Tom captivated the audience with his  performance for the 2022 Essex Young Musician of the Year competition.
He will present a recital of beautiful music including works by Bach and Francisco Tarrega.

Doors open at 3:30pm.
The Budworth Hall, High Street, Ongar CM5 9JG

The recital will be followed by canapes, a buffet and wine to celebrate our new season of events.

Tickets are available from TicketSource in advance, and a few tickets will be available on the door – £12 (club members); £15 (non-members). You are urged to book ahead using the link below in order to avoid disappointment.

Book your tickets here
If you wish to reserve a ticket at the door, please call our box office on 07970 791945

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Sunday 21st May 2023 • 2pm

The Great Dunmow Town Band Ensemble

On Sunday 21st May The Great Dunmow Town Band Ensemble will present a wonderful selection of popular music for a “Sunday Soundbites” event. There will be a mixture of jazz, swing, film, pop and musical greats at the Budworth Hall... followed by a delicious Afternoon Tea!!

The Band celebrated their 10th Anniversary in March of this year, performing to a large and appreciative audience at the Foakes Hall in Great Dunmow. In those 10 years, they have raised funds for various charities amounting to over £40,000.

The Great Dunmow Town Band was founded and led by Andy King, who sadly died last year. Andy was also a very valued member of the Ongar Music Club Committee and is sorely missed by all who knew and worked with him. The band continues to grow and thrive under their new conductor, Callum Abram. We are delighted to welcome the Ensemble for this 'Sunday Soundbites' event.

Tickets are available to buy here from Ticketsource

or can be reserved by emailing

Numbers will be limited for this event, so book early to avoid disappointment... Members £10/Non Members £12 (price includes Afternoon Tea).

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Wednesday 19th April 2023 • 2:00pm

An Audience with Jonathan Veira

Internationally acclaimed Jonathan Veira will bring his inimitable charm and pizzaz to the Budworth Hall, singing a programme from Mozart to Gershwin to Gilbert and Sullivan and a whole lot more – he will also share humorous tales from his international operatic and entertainment career that spans nearly forty years.

The recital will include a chance to chat ... and a delicious afternoon tea!

Tickets may also be reserved by email from:

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Sunday 13th November 2022 • 2:00pm

Masterclass with Susan Bullock CBE • Nicholas Bosworth, piano

Ongar Music Club is delighted and honoured to present a Masterclass for young singers on Sunday November 13th from 2.00pm to 7pm at Budworth Hall, Ongar, Essex. The Masterclass will be given by the distinguished British soprano Susan Bullock CBE, with Nicholas Bosworth as official pianist.

Susan Bullock CBE soprano

Susan Bullock’s unique position as one of the world’s most sought-after dramatic sopranos was recognised by the award of a CBE in June 2014.

Of her most distinctive roles, Wagner’s Brünnhilde has garnered outstanding praise leading Bullock to become the first ever soprano to sing four consecutive cycles of Der Ring des Nibelungen at the Royal Opera House under Sir Antonio Pappano. Appearances as Richard Strauss’ Elektra have brought her equal international acclaim and collaborations with some of the world’s leading conductors including Fabio Luisi, Semyon Bychkov, Seiji Ozawa, Sir Mark Elder and Edo de Waart.

In recent seasons, Susan has explored new repertoire making debuts as Klytaemnestra (Elektra) for the Canadian Opera Company under Johannes Debus, the role of Liz Stride in the world premiere of Iain Bell’s Jack the Ripper for ENO; and her acclaimed portrayal of Mother for Scottish Opera in Mark Anthony-Turnage’s Greek at BAM which she debuted at the Edinburgh International Festival. Further debuts include in the role of Kostelnička (Jenůfa) for Den Norske Opera and Grange Park Opera; both Gertrude and The Witch (Hänsel und Gretel) for Opera North and Grange Park Opera, and as Mrs Lovett (Sweeney Todd) for Houston Grand Opera and Bergen National Opera. She has taken on the role of Magdelone in Carl Nielsen’s Maskarade, in a new production by Tobias Kratzer conducted by Titus Engel for Oper Frankfurt; and returned to Scottish Opera as Old Lady in their new production of Candide. The past seasons have also brought special virtual projects Feast in the Time of Plague and her debut as an actor in Keith Warner’s unique staging of King Lear in which she played Goneril at The Grange Festival. 

In the current season, Susan reprises the role of Mother in Missy Mazzoli’s award winning Breaking the Waves for Opéra Comique; and after a hugely successfully London premier last season, she gives further performances as Judith in Daisy Evans’s production of Bluebeard’s Castle for Atlanta Opera, with subsequent performances at Edinburgh International Festival and with New Zealand Opera later this same season. Susan also returns to Oper Frankfurt as Klytaemnestra (Elektra) in Claus Guth’s new production, conducted by Sebastien Weigle.

Nicholas Bosworth piano

A much sought-after accompanist and repetiteur, his concert and recital work has included performances at various festivals (Wexford, Edinburgh Fringe, Buxton, London Opera) and in diverse locations (the Royal Lodge at Windsor, the Presidential Palace in Malta, and the QE2) and with celebrity singers Lesley Garrett and Bryn Terfel. He has been official accompanist in masterclasses for Thomas Hampson, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Brigitte Fassbaender, the latter as part of the Wigmore Hall’s ‘Master Series’ recorded for BBC Radio 3.

Work with opera companies has included Glyndebourne, Garsington Opera, Opera North, Iford Arts, ETO and ENO and he has worked on many recordings for Opera Rara. In 2019, he worked for ETO’s spring tour, The Grange Festival and played continuo in the Barefoot Band for Longborough Opera Young Artists Proramme’s acclaimed production of La Calisto. This year he is working for the Longborough Festival again and for the Glyndebourne Academy.

Last year with the Cellist Joseph Spooner, he recorded online concerts for the English Music Festival, Ongar Music Club and for Morley College’s lunchtime concert series. In 2022 they also gave recitals at the Cayman Festival in the Cayman Islands.

Nicholas is no stranger to Ongar Music Club, first appearing as Pianist for the Winner of the Essex Young Musician of the Year Competition in 1984, Soprano Jane Webster.

Nicholas studied at the Royal Academy of Music and at the National Opera Studio. He has been made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in recognition of his work.

Application Requirements

Closing date for application Oct 13th 2022

Audition Videos: please supply one unedited performance (maximum 4mins duration) via Dropbox to

Biography (100–150 Words)

CV of performances to date

Your contact details

A current headshot

One reference is required. This should be from someone who can address both your personal and musical qualities, such as your music teacher, repetiteur, coach or conductor.

Successful Applicants

Those chosen to take part in the Masterclass will be notified by email on October 18th 2022. On your acceptance of the place offered, the entry fee of £85 is then to be sent by Bank Transfer to Ongar Music Club.
Sort Code: 20-29-86
Account: 20691127

Each singer will be given a 40 minute masterclass session, and will attend the full day from 2pm to 7pm. At 6pm each singer will perform their chosen piece as part of a finale concert. Refreshments will be available during the day.

Choice of repertoire is open, please chose 2 pieces. (One or both pieces will be worked on during your session). Please send the titles and editions of the two pieces to the chairman by November 1st 2022. A scanned copy and word for word translation is also required to be sent by email by this date, and an original copy of the music must be presented on the day of the Masterclass.

Please contact chairman Jane Webster, if you have any queries or require any further information

There will be a limited number of tickets available on the door. Tickets can be purchased ahead of the day by using the link below. You can also go to and search ‘Ongar Music Club’.

Ticket price: £10.00 (Members: £8.00)

You can also go to and search ‘Ongar Music Club’.

If you do not have access to the internet, you can reserve a ticket by calling 07970 791945.

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Sunday 16th October • 3pm

Madeline Robinson, soprano • Michael Lafferty baritone • Francesca Lauri, piano

An hour-long programme with a sparkling mix of songs and duets performed by the 2019 and 2021 Essex Young Musician of the Year First prize winners Michael Lafferty - Baritone and Madeline Robinson - Soprano. These three young musicians are all making their way into the profession and receiving fabulous reviews.

Refreshment will be served following concert when you will be able to meet the artistes ... you will also have a chance to win a super prize in the raffle.

There will be a limited number of tickets available on the door. Tickets can be purchased ahead of the day by using this link:

You can also go to and search ‘Ongar Music Club’.

If you do not have access to the internet, you can reserve a ticket by calling 07970 791945.

Lunchtime recitals with afternoon tea

Soundbites! — Ongar Music Club's series of lunchtime recitals held in the Ballroom of the Budworth Hall, Ongar at 1:30pm. Soundbites! are usually finished by 3:30pm. There is  a car park opposite with a charge of £1 per hour.

The recitals include a delicious afternoon tea (included in the admission charge) and a chance to chat.

Tickets are just £10 (£8 for club members) and these can be reserved in advance by email from See the about page for details of membership.

Please note that there will be NO admittance to the hall until 1:00pm.

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Tuesday 16th June 2020

Kayleigh McEvoy, sopranoAlisdair Hogarth, piano

Kayleigh McEvoy was the winner of the 2017 Essex Young Musician of the Year competition. We look forward to welcoming her back to Ongar along with the renowned pianist , Alisdair Hogarth (also from Essex).

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Tuesday 19th May 2020

The Stonebridge Trio
Jane Miller
, violinClive Miller, trumpetJohn Garner, piano

A miscellany of delightful music for varying combinations of violin and piano, trumpet and piano and sometimes, all three. Their programme will include music by the king of the tango, Piazzolla, to get your feet tapping!

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Tuesday 28th April 2020

David Silkoff, piano

A welcome return to Ongar by this favourite Essex-born pianist. His programme will include much-loved piano pieces such as Beethoven's 'Moonlight Sonata' and Debussy's 'Clair de Lune'. The recital will finish with a selection of popular songs from the shows.

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Tuesday 31st March 2020

Marianne Olyver, violin • Dominic John, piano

Gypsy Carnival….. Marianne Olyver and Dominic John present a sparkling virtuoso programme of thrilling toe-tapping Eastern European favourites including Monti, Dvorak and Smetana.

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Tuesday 18th February 2020

Dominic Natoli, tenorNicholas Reading, piano

Internationally acclaimed tenor Dominic Natoli and pianist Nicholas Reading present a Valentine’s Day inspired program of melodies from the masters of Italian opera and song including Vincenzo Bellini and Francesco Paolo Tosti.

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Tuesday 28th January 2020


Xander Benham was runner-up in the 2019 Essex Young Musician of the Year Competition. His varied programme will include music ranging from Khachaturian to Erroll Garner’s ‘Misty’.

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Tuesday 17th December 2019

SIMEON WOOD, flautist and entertainer

Anecdotes and humour weave their way through this diverse mix of beautiful music. A Christmas repertoire presented in a light-hearted, informal and captivating way.

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Tuesday 26th November 2019


Janet will be presenting a programme of arias and songs by Puccini, Bizet, Mozart, Novello and Lehar, which she will personally introduce and present ... along with some interesting and amusing anecdotes.

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Tuesday 29th October 2019

THE COUNTESS OF WESSEX'S STRING ORCHESTRA is based at the Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich. They play for a wide variety of engagements including investitures, royal ceremonies and state banquets.

The Quartet will be playing by kind permission of Major General B.J Bathurst CBE, the Major General Commanding the Household Division. There will be a Raffle, and all funds raised at this concert will go to ABF, The Soldiers’ Charity.

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Tuesday 24th September 2019

ALISTAIR HOGARTH, piano is a past finalist of the Essex Young Musician of the Year Competition and is renowned both as a soloist and a piano-accompanist. He also formed  The Prince Consort — an innovative group of young professional singers.

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Tuesday 10th September 2019


Jessica Edom was runner-up in the 2018 Essex Young Musician of the Year Competition and her pianist, Jamie Cochrane, was the Essex Young Musician of the Year, 2018. They will present an atractive programme of song and lieder.

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Tuesday 25th June 2019

Gregory Walmsley, cello

Gregory began playing the cello at ten and was awarded a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music where he won various prizes including the John Barbirolli Cello Prize. From there he continued his studies at Rutgers University in New Jersey with the Beaux Arts Trio cellist Bernard Greenhouse. In 1993 he gave his debut recital at the Wigmore Hall in London.

After spending ten hot years in Seville at The Maestranza Opera House he returned to join the London Philharmonic Orchestra in 2003. He now combines his love of solo recitals, chamber music, symphonic and operatic repertoire worldwide. Greg plays a Ludivicus Blasich cello from Trieste.