The Guildhall School is delighted to announce Matthew Jones has been appointed as the School’s new Head of Chamber Music, commencing in September 2017. Jones has been Acting Head of Chamber Music since January 2016 and will continue to work alongside Chamber Music Coordinators Ursula Smith (Strings), Carole Presland (Keyboard) and Joy Farrall (Wind, Brass & Percussion) in the department.
Jonathan Vaughan, Vice-Principal & Director of Music, Guildhall School commented: “Having worked with Matthew for many years, first at NYO and subsequently at Guildhall School, I am delighted that he has been appointed Head of Chamber Music. Matthew has been Senior Tutor of String Chamber Music here and Professor of Viola since 2011. He has a unique blend of skills: a wealth of chamber music performing and teaching experience, a chamber and solo discography of 24 CDs and extensive knowledge in the performance health arena. The School prides itself on our chamber music provision as a cornerstone of our musicianship training. Our chamber music staff is drawn form an A-list cast of international chamber musicians. Under Matthew’s guidance I am confident chamber music at Guildhall School will continue to flourish and prosper.”
Chamber Music is a postgraduate specialism for students who wish to hone their listening and interpretative skills in small chamber group combinations. Groups can consist of any combination of three players or more, with weekly coaching from Principal Study staff, including András Keller, Levon Chilingirian, Simon Rowland-Jones and Andrew Marriner. Students also receive regular coaching from visiting ensembles and artists, with recent ensembles and artists including Ralf Gothóni, Janine Jansen, Endellion Quartet and Heath Quartet. Chamber Music also forms a core strand of other Principal Study instrumental courses at the School at undergraduate and postgraduate level, offering almost unparalleled coaching and a wide range of performance opportunities.
Matthew Jones is widely acknowledged as one of the leading violists, violinists and pedagogues of his generation. Equally at home as soloist or chamber musician performing classical or contemporary repertoire, improvising or collaborating with other art forms, recent recital and chamber music venues include London’s Wigmore Hall and South Bank, and the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing; he made his critically acclaimed Carnegie Hall recital debut in 2008. He is violist of The Bridge Duo and the Debussy Ensemble, was a member of the Badke String Quartet when they won the 2007 Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, and is currently a member of Ensemble MidtVest, an innovative ten-piece chamber ensemble based in Denmark whose work includes classical and contemporary performance and improvisation. Jones is also a composer, mathematics graduate and teacher of the Alexander Technique and Kundalini Yoga. His holistic approach to music-making has led to great demand for his workshops and seminars on empowering musicians and enhancing performance, clients of which have included world-renowned conductors and soloists, world champion athletes and orchestras including the New World Symphony, Melbourne Symphony and the European Union Youth Orchestra.