Martin Gatt

Composer Information: Martin Gatt


Born in Aberdeen, Scotland, Martin’s first musical experience was learning the piano with his father from the age of three. He took up percussion aged 11 and was accepted into the National Youth Orchestra two years later. However, when asked at school what instrument he would like to learn he agreed to try the bassoon, having been told that the French Horn had been taken, and that was that.

He studied with Archie Camden at the Royal College of Music, London and aged 21 became Principal Bassoonist in the London Philharmonic Orchestra where he stayed for 8 years. During the last 4 of these he also played Principal with the newly formed English Chamber Orchestra , and when that became a full time post he left the L.P.O. and during the next 10 years devoted his time to playing for such conductors as Britten, Barenboim, and Leppard.

Martin also devoted a great deal of time to all forms of chamber music, and during his years in the E.C.O. also played with The Academy of St. Martins in the Fields , became a founder member of the London Sinfonietta and with Barry Tuckwell founded the Tuckwell Wind Quintet which performed and recorded all over the World for the next 20 years.    
In 1978 he was invited by the L.S.O. to become their Principal bassoon, and there he stayed until 1998 when, looking for a quieter pace of life and a new and different challenge, he and his wife, Liz, moved to the West Country, where he has become a member of the Bath Philharmonia, Wessex Winds, West of England Philharmonic in Bristol, and commutes to London to play and teach. Since leaving the L.S.O. he has deputised in the BBC Symphony Orchestra, B.B.C. National Orchestra of Wales, City of Birmingham Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Symphony Orchestra, and  regularly plays in the London based  Brandenburg Sinfonia.

He was Professor of Bassoon at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, for 20 years  and was awarded F.G.S.M in 1979.  During a 3 year sabbatical from the L.S.O. (1984-1987) he set up and ran the Department of Wind and Brass at the newly opened Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and resumed teaching in  London at the Royal College of Music where, in 2002 he was elected  a Fellow.

He has recorded most of the Solo and Chamber repertoire for E.M.I. ,Phillips, Decca, R.C.A. and has performed as soloist world wide. Most recent activities include forming the Lynn Trio with his pianist Margaret Lynn from Hong Kong and Jane Finch (oboe) with whom he has played and recorded Chamber music repertoire during the last 8 years, and establishing a music publishing company with his friend and horn-playing colleague, Paul Sawbridge.   With the Trio he recorded Poulenc and Francaix trios in April and with  Margaret Lynn with whom he has performed and recorded exclusively as a duo since 1984, he will record a selection of his favourite Lieder & Arias arranged for bassoon and piano in July 2006, a sequel to their much acclaimed CD of transcriptions of instrumental works of Schumann & Brahms.     

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