Biography

Conductor

Gavin Sutherland born in Chester-le-Street, is a conductor, composer/arranger and pianist. He studied conducting, piano and orchestration at Huddersfield University and graduated with first-class honours being awarded the Kruczynski prize for piano and the Davidson prize for distinction brought to the Institution. He was staff conductor for Northern Ballet Theatre, Principal Guest Conductor of the Royal New Zealand Ballet, and has also conducted for New National Ballet of Japan, Norwegian National Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, New Adventures and South African Ballet Theatre. In June 2008 he was appointed Music Director of English National Ballet, becoming Principal Conductor in 2010. He has also orchestrated many of their productions, most recently the hugely successful Akram Khan Giselle. He made his BBC Proms debut in 2016 conducting the BBC Concert Orchestra in the Strictly Prom at London’s Royal Albert Hall. In 2017 he conducted the BBC National Orchestra of Wales as part of the Last Night of the Proms celebrations, from Swansea’s Singleton Park. In 2017 he made his debut at the Royal Opera House, conducting Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde as part of the celebration of the life and work of Sir Kenneth Macmillan. . He is much in demand as composer/arranger and has supplied arrangements and orchestrations to all of the major BBC orchestras and leading orchestras throughout the world. Recent compositions include a musical, Little Women, and received two West End revivals, a clarinet concerto, several chamber works and a one-act ballet, Revolting Rhymes. 2007 also saw him contribute a ten-minute medley of Carry On film themes for the BBC/BAFTA Film Music Prom at the Royal Albert Hall. He was awarded the Critics’ Circle National Dance Award for Outstanding Creative Contribution (2020)

Gavin Sutherland has made over a hundred recordings in the UK and abroad, with among others, the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, the BBC Concert Orchestra and the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, for labels including Decca, Universal, Sony, Warner Classics, Naxos Records’ Marco Polo imprint, Hyperion Records and Dutton-Vocalion. He has recorded works as wide-ranging as Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius, two chart-topping albums featuring scores from the Carry On films, and the single release of the Radio 4 UK Theme. From 2009 to 2018 he was Chairman of the Light Music Society, taking over from the President, the late Ernest Tomlinson. His concert appearances include Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra (particularly on BBC Radio 2’s Friday Night is Music Night), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. the London Symphony Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Münchener Rundfunksorchester, Tokyo Philharmonic and Symphony Orchestras, Auckland Philharmonia, the National Orchestra of Colombia, Macao Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Hong Kong Sinfonietta, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, RTÉ Concert Orchestra, Australian Philharmonic Orchestra, Aalborg SO and Johannesburg Festival Orchestra

As a pianist he performs regularly as a concerto soloist, often directing from the keyboard, and appears as a recitalist, accompanist and chamber musician. He has released live recordings of improvisations and compositions, Piano Pastimes, and has made reconstructions of works whose materials have been lost or destroyed, including TV and film scores, classical ballet and symphonic orchestral works. As a speaker and broadcaster he has frequently spoken on BBC Radio and Television, and is renowned as an expert on ballet music, British Light Music and the music of British Television.