About Wind, Brass & Percussion
Flute | Oboe | Clarinet | Bassoon | Horn |Trumpet | Trombone | Tuba | Timpani & Percussion | Saxophone | Recorder
The Wind, Brass and Percussion Department provides exciting opportunities for learning and performing. Led by Richard Benjafield (Head of Department), Fraser MacAulay (Deputy Head, Woodwind) and Beth Randell (Deputy Head, Brass), our world-class team of instrumental professors are leaders in orchestral, solo, and chamber performance.
Our alumni hold top orchestral jobs, are international competition winners, and are successfully employed across the music business. Our courses offer many options to help shape your future career, professional skills and artistic voice. Through a supportive and dynamic environment, we focus on highly specialised skills, versatility, and individual development guided by your professors, visiting artists, and the pastoral support of your personal tutor.
Watch the video
Find out more about Wind, Brass & Percussion training at Guildhall from our students and staff in the video below.
Wind, Brass & Percussion contact details
Michal Rogalski, Wind, Brass & Percussion Department Manager
Tel: 020 7382 7259
See the latest news from Wind, Brass & Percussion.
Join us for our upcoming Wind, Brass & Percussion Open Day, book now to meet our staff and students and explore our industry leading facilities and performance spaces. This is your chance to learn about the audition process, discover more about studying at Guildhall, and see first-hand why we were ranked the number one higher education institution for Music in the 2024 Guardian University Guide music league table.
Wind, Brass & Percussion Open Day
Sunday 5 November 2023
9.30AM - 4.00PM
Visit Guildhall School of Music & Drama on Sunday 15 October 2023 for our BIG Double Reed Day.
Our BIG Double Reed Day offers an exciting opportunity for musicians, teachers, and parents to meet and engage with a community of oboists and bassoonists from across the country.
Join double reed players of all ages for a day of masterclasses, small group ensemble coaching, technique classes, performance confidence workshops, pedagogy discussion sessions and a grand finale concert - which will be hosted in our Milton Court Concert Hall.
You will get the chance to learn and play alongside world-leading Guildhall tutors including, Alison Teale, Dan Jemison, Gordon Hunt, Helen Storey, Richard Ion, Steven Hudson, Bob Porter, Fraser MacAulay, Rachel Broadbent, Rosie Cow, Rebecca Wood, Adrian Rowlands and Stuart Russell. Guest tutors include Michal Rogalski and others to be confirmed.
Our event will allow visitors to participate and perform in a newly commissioned work for massed double reeds by award-winning composer, Peter McGarr, as well as the opportunity to browse trade stands hosted by Howarth of London, Crowthers of Canterbury, Double Reed Ltd, OB3, Reed Machines, Wonderful Winds and many more.
A limited number of sponsored places and bursaries are available to assist those on low incomes, towards the cost of attending. Contact BigDoubleReedDay@gsmd.ac.uk for more information on funded places. Places for those aged 10 and under are free.
Guildhall School welcomes all recorder players for a day of exploring the instrument, with performances from Palisander, Finn Collinson, Otto Hashmi and Apollo’s Cabinet.
Browse instruments, music, and accessories for sale by Jack Darach and the Early Music Shop.
Bring your instruments to join us for some massed playing at the end of the day in Milton Court Concert Hall.
Guildhall Recorder Day
Sunday 1 October 2023
11.30AM – 17.00PM
To register for the day, email Richard Benjafield – email@example.com
Your journey as a student in the Wind, Brass and Percussion Department will be an individual one, offering a rich and diverse programme of opportunities to enable you to become the very best musician that you can be.
A typical week:
Principal Study lessons
Wind, Brass and Percussion Orchestral Repertoire classes
Instrumental Classes for every instrument
Supporting academic studies and professional development classes
All students play in Guildhall orchestras and ensembles – allocated and not auditioned.
Our chamber music programme is unique. Every student has regular and guaranteed coaching from professors.
Opportunities to play contemporary, jazz or early music.
Teaching skills and outreach opportunities
Career management and continuing professional development
“My professional career continues to be benefited by my time at Guildhall: as more time goes by I find myself falling back on the values and skills that Guildhall provided me.
Guildhall gave me not just world-class instrumental teaching, but a strong grounding in my own identity and the knowledge of how to thrive in my career.
Since finishing my course at Guildhall, I’ve found that the education and guidance I received whilst there has made integrating into the professional scene far easier than it otherwise would have been.”
Adam Crighton BMus(Hons) Bass Trombone 2019
“From my perspective, Guildhall is by far the most creatively diverse and artistically supportive institution of its kind in the UK. The openness of the staff has allowed me to be unrestricted in my professional journey going forward. My experience at Guildhall gave and continues to give me the confidence to make bold artistic and professional choices and forge an exciting career.”
Vittorio Angelone BMus(Hons) Percussion 2018
Read more about the BMus programme structure.
Focusing on the versatility and musical diversity of the contemporary saxophonist, saxophone students study classical and contemporary music, jazz, improvisation and musical theatre repertoire including individual lessons on flute and clarinet.
Recorder students study music from medieval and baroque to contemporary repertoire, including regular masterclasses with visiting professors Robert Ehrlich and Karel van Steenhoven. All students perform with the School's consort Woodwork and collaborate with students and professors from the Historical Performance Department in classes and ensembles. Guildhall owns two consorts of recorders, including the recently commissioned Turner’s Consort.
Read more about our our Guildhall Artist Masters (MMus/MPerf) in Performance. In Wind, Brass and Percussion, there are two main pathways: Orchestral Artistry (in association with the London Symphony Orchestra) and Advanced Instrumental Studies.
Orchestral Artistry in association with the London Symphony Orchestra
Playing and learning alongside LSO players, and in Guildhall projects and classes, you will follow an intensive programme of orchestrally-focused training.
Find out details of this exciting specialism.
Advanced Instrumental Studies
This specialism is for talented students to develop their individual artistic voice with a particular focus on selected repertoire, whether solo or chamber music, early or contemporary music – with or without the inclusion of orchestral repertoire.
Professor Eric Crees conducts Guildhall Symphonic Brass in Bernstein
The Planets - WBP and EPM collaboration led by John Harle
Guildhall Double Reed Band led by Alison Teale
Carmen Suite arr. Colin Skinner, directed by Mike Lovatt
Fireworks! Guildhall Symphonic Wind Orchestra, conducted by Peter Whelan
Guildhall's Recorder Consort, directed by Ian Wilson
Racconto deGuildhall Ubu Ensemble plays Racconto dell'inferno, by Louis Andriessen. Katie MacDonald, voice, Simon Wills, conductor
Activities & Ensembles
- Up to 45 individual Principal Study lessons each year
- Weekly orchestral repertoire classes
- Scheduled weekly chamber music coaching and rehearsals -
- Platform performance classes
- Symphony, Opera and Chamber orchestras
- Guildhall Ubu Ensemble – contemporary music
- Symphonic Wind Orchestra, Guildhall Brass Soloists, Guildhall Wind Soloists
- Saxophone Ensemble, Percussion Ensemble, Big Band, Recorder Consort, Baroque Orchestra
- Projects with the Jazz, Historical Performance and Composition projects
Highlights, Successes & Alumni
- Masterclasses with over 80 world-leading artists, including: Denis Bouriakov, Julien Beaudiment, Adam Walker (flute); Melinda Maxwell, Olivier Stankewicz, Julianna Koch (oboe); Michael Collins, Pascal Moragues, Reiner Wehle (clarinet); Rachel Gough, Gustavo Nunes, Gretha Tuls (bassoon); Nigel Hitchcock, Naomi Sullivan, Huw Wiggin (saxophone); Karel van Steenhoven, Sebastian Marq (recorder); Nebjosa Zivkovic, Russell Hartenberger, Peter Erskine, Kuljit Bhamra, Emma King (percussion); Andrew Bain, Olivier Darbellay, Katie Woolley (horn); Philip Cobb, Omar Tomasoni, Thomas Hooten (trumpet); Jörgen van Rijen, Mark Templeton, Stefan Schulz (trombone); David Cribb (tuba); Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet, Canadian Brass, Sō Percussion, Delta Saxophone Quartet.
- Wind Brass and Percussion Spotlight concert series by ensembles and soloists, in Milton Court and Silk Street
- Guildhall Brass Soloists, directed by Anne McAneney, at St John’s, Smith Square
- Guildhall Wind Soloists directed by Michael Collins, in Milton Court
- Billy May’s Big Fat Brass directed by Mike Lovatt, and Wind, Brass and Percussion Big Band directed by Mick Foster and Matt Skelton, in Milton Court
- Guildhall Ubu Ensemble, directed by Simon Wills, performed The Yellow Shark by Frank Zappa at BBC Total Immersion, and on Radio 3
Students in the Department have been prize winners in the following competitions:
- Nestlé and Salzburg Festival Young Conductors Award
- Los Angeles Philharmonic Dudamel Fellowship in Conducting
- Tunnell Trust Chamber Music scheme
- Royal Overseas League Final
- Lions UK and Ireland Musician of the Year
- Open Recorder Days Amsterdam
- RTÉ lyric fm Award
- Newark Brass Festival Competition
South Sinfonia 2023-24 has five Guildhall alumni:
Karen Wong (flute)
Lottie Brenton and Catriona Lockhart (Oboe)
Fresca David (clarinet)
Lucas Houldcroft (trumpet)
Charlie Hodge (timpani & percussion)
Students are frequently selected for London Sinfonietta Academy, LSO Timpani & Percussion and Brass Academies, London Philharmonic Orchestra Future Firsts, and Glyndebourne Pit Perfect,
- Tom Nielsen (BMus Hons 2023) Co-Principal Trumpet LPO
- Inoko Isobe (Artist Diploma 2021) Co-Principal Oboe, Jyvaskyla Sinfonis, Finland
- Enlli Parri (MPerf 2020), 2nd flute and piccolo, Welsh National Opera
- Will Morley (BMus Hons 2020) Principal Trombone, Bergische Philharmoniker, Germany
- Luke O’Toole (Mus 2017) Principal Flute, Opera North
- Han Kim (BMus 2016), Principal Clarinet, Paris Opera
- Cerys Ambrose-Evans (BMus Hons 2016) Prinicipal Bassoon, Scottish Chamber Orchestra
- Kris Garfitt (BMus Hons 2015) Principal Trombone, West German Radio Orchestra Cologne
- Greg Topping (BMus Hons 2014) 2nd Bassoon, Ulster Orchestra
- Alex Wide (MMus 2014) Principal Horn, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
- Jonathan Goodwin (BMus Hons 2014) Co-Principal Trombone, Gothenburg Opera
- Audun Breen (MPerf 2014) Principal Trombone, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
- Ausiàs Garrigós Morant (Clarinet 2013) Bass Clarinet, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
- Alex Edmundson (BMus Hons 2013) Prinicpal Horn, RPO
- Edward Griffiths (BMus Hons 2013) Co-Prinicipal Horn, Welsh National Opera
- Lauren Reeve-Rawlings (BMus Hons 2013) 3rd Horn, Scottish Opera
- Sameeta Gahir (BMus Hons 2013) Principal Piccolo, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
- Luke Russell (MPerf 2012) Principal Piccolo, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
- Fabian Schmidt (BMus Hons 2011) Brandedenburgisches Staatsorchester, Frankfurt
- Zhiying Wei (MPerf 2011) 2nd Trombone, Beijing National Centre for the Performing Arts
- Matthew Featherstone (MMus 2010) Principal Flute, BBC National Orchestra of Wales
- Emma Selby (BMus Hons 2009) 2nd Bassoon, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
- James Burke (BMus Hons 2009) Co-Principal Clarinet, BBC Symphony Orchestra
- Philip Cobb (BMus Hons 2009) Principal Trumpet, BBC Symphony Orchestra
- Fiona Paterson (BMus Hons 2008) 2nd Flute, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
- Sarah Bennington (Flute 2007) 2nd Flute, Welsh National Opera
- Jonathan Watkins (BMus Hons 2007) Principal Trombone, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
- Steven Hudson (Oboe 2006) Section Principal Oboe, BBC National Orchestra of Wales
- Richard Watkin (BMus Hons 2006) Principal Trombone, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
- Angela Barnes (BMus Hons 2005) 3rd Horn, London Symphony Orchestra
- Chris Richards (BMus Hons 2004) Principal Clarinet, London Symphony Orchestra
- Adam MacKenzie (MMus 2003) Principal Bassoon, Opera North
- Karen Hutt (BMus Hons 2002) Sub-Principal Percussion, LPO
- Elspeth Dutch (BMus 2002) Principal Horn, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
- Alison Balsom (BMus 2001) international trumpet soloist, winner of Best Female Artist, Classical Brit Awards; Artist of the Year (Gramaphone Magazine 2013)
- Juliette Bausor (BMus 2001) Principal Flute Royal Northern Sinfonia
- Joby Burgess (MMus 2001) Percussionist with Peter Gabriel, Powerplant
- Chris Richards (BMus 2001) Co-Principal Clarinet, London Symphony Orchestra
- Cormac Henry (BMus 2000) Principal Flute, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
- Mark Templeton (BMus 1998) Co-Principal Trombone, London Philharmonic Orchestra
- Helen Vollam (BMus & PDOT 1997) Co-Principal Trombone, BBC Symphony Orchestra
- Alison Teale (BMus 1996) Co-Principal Oboe, BBC Symphony Orchestra
- Julian Warburton (BMus 1996) Principal Percussion, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group
- Gareth Davies (BMus 1994) Co-Principal Flute, London Symphony Orchestra
- Robert Holliday (BMus1993) Sub-Principal Trombone, The Orchestra of the Royal Opera House
- Byron Fulcher (BMus 1991) Co-Principal Trombone, Philharmonia
- Sarah Willis (BMus 1990) 4th Horn, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Guildhall has an unrivalled track record of successful trombone alumni in orchestral jobs in the UK, Europe and Asia. These Guildhall alumni can currently be heard in UK orchestras.
Mark Templeton London Philharmonic Orchestra Principal
David Stewart BBC Concert Orchestra Bass Trombone
Helen Vollam BBC Symphony Orchestra Principal
Byron Fulcher Philharmonia Principal
David Whitehouse London Philharmonic Orchestra Sub-Principal
Dan Jenkins BBC Symphony Orchestra Sub-Principal
Robert Holliday Royal Opera House Sub-Principal
Kevin Morgan Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Principal
Robb Tooley Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Sub-Principal
Roger Cutts Welsh National Opera Principal
Alan Swain Welsh National Opera Principal
Russell Taylor BBC Philharmonic Orchestra Bass Trombone
Richard Watkin CBSO Section Leader
Anthony Howe CBSO Principal Second
Simon Cowen RLPO Section Leader
Recent successes of Guildhall trombone students
Kris Garfitt BMus (Hons) 2015
West German Radio Orchestra Cologne, Principal
Audun Breen MPerf 2014
Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Principal
Will Morley BMus (Hons) 2020
Bergische Philharmoniker, Principal
Jon Roskilly BMus (Hons) 2011
Kuopia Symphony, Finland, Principal
Jonathan Goodwin BMus (Hons) 2014
Royal Danish Orchestra, Co-Principal
Emil-George Atanassov BMus (Hons) 2016
Sofia National Opera and Ballet, Bulgaria, Principal
Fabian Schmidt BMus (Hons) 2011
Brandedenburgisches Staatsorchester, Frankfurt, Sub-principal
Sam Clough BMus (Hons) 2022
Sofia National Opera and Ballet, Bulgaria, Bass trombone
Farkhad Bulatov MPerf 2018
Astana Opera, Orchestra, Kazakhstan, Principal
Douglas Murdoch MMus 2009
Jennaer Philharmonie, Germany, Wechsel Posaune