Jamie Smith, Jonny Bates, Mike Cavanagh, Chris Robertson
A4 Brass Quartet comprises of principal players from some of the UK’s top brass bands, including Black Dyke, Brighouse & Rastrick and Foden’s. With “technical virtuosity in abundance” (Brass Band World), these four astonishing musicians come together to perform both lyrical and high-octane works, forming a distinctive and new take on chamber music.
The Quartet has a unique blend of instruments, with a cornet, tenor horn, baritone and euphonium creating an exclusive sound that stands out from the standard brass quartet. With this unusual instrumentation, A4 Brass has actively developed their repertoire, commissioning new music, composing and arranging music themselves.
Formed in 2013 at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), A4 Brass Quartet has gone on to become a multi-award-winning chamber ensemble and establish itself at the forefront of British brass chamber music. Prizes including the Royal Over-Seas League Chamber Music Competition (2018); a Tunnell Trust Award (2018); the Musicians’ Company Maisie Lewis Prize (2018) and the Tillett Trust Young Artists’ Platform (2017). In September 2018 they were selected to become City Music Foundation Artists and the following month were the first brass ensemble to ever win the Royal Philharmonic Society Henderson Chamber Ensemble Award. They also regularly work with Live Music Now and Music in Hospitals & Care and are committed to expanding and diversifying their work.
The Quartet has performed widely throughout the UK appearing at major venues and festivals including Wigmore Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Bridgewater Hall, Cadogan Hall, St. John’s Smith Square, Purcell Room, St. Margaret’s Church Westminster Abbey (for Park Lane Group), Battersea Arts Centre (RPS Awards 2019), St. Martin-in-the-Fields & St. James’ Piccadilly (for ROSL), Lake District Summer Music, Northern Aldborough, Wimbledon International and King’s Lynn Festivals. Overseas engagements include a residency at the Lieksa Brass Week (Finland), Ceresio Estate Festival (Switzerland), Sibelius Academy (Finland), and two appearances at the Trakai Fanfare Week (Lithuania).
In June 2018 the Quartet completed the prestigious International Artist Diploma (IAD) in Chamber Music at the RNCM as John Fewkes scholars and upon graduating they accepted the invitation from Principal Linda Merrick to become Honorary Associate Artists of the RNCM. Furthermore, in December 2020 A4 Brass Quartet became the first ever ensemble to be awarded Associate Members of the RNCM (ARNCM) in recognition of the Quartet’s success in the music profession.
The Quartet has featured on national television and radio, appearing multiple times on both ITV’s Christmas Carol Concerts and BBC Radio 3’s ‘In-Tune’ with Sean Rafferty and Katie Derham. In 2016 they released their debut CD, Mists of the Mountains, at the RNCM Brass Band Festival featuring new, original music composed for them, including works by Martin Ellerby, Edward Gregson, Oliver Waespi and Nigel Clarke. In 2021 they released their second studio album, Mosaic, on the SOMM Recordings label to critical acclaim.
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