We use cookies from third-party services to help us improve our website.
Our musicians

Witnessing Sting and Bryn Terfel’s duet of Roxanne was a real highlight!

Published Wednesday 27 May 2020

Gideon Brooks, Trumpet

When did you start to play your instrument?
When I was 8 years old.

Do you play any other instrument?
I used to have singing and piano lessons, but I don’t think the public deserves to hear me do either of those things anymore!

Where did you study?
I completed my undergraduate degree at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and my postgraduate degree at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

When did you first play with Sinfonia Cymru?
After auditioning for a place to be on the extras list in 2015, I was invited to join the orchestra on a tour across South Wales. The orchestra was led by Rachel Podger and we performed three concerts of Bach and Telemann. Everyone was fantastic! I felt like I had to keep up.

What do you like about working with Sinfonia Cymru?
I love that every project is different. Just from 2019, I fondly remember performing ‘Tosca’ in Abu Dhabi and, soon after, working on a collaboration with the folk group ‘Kabantu’ on a tour across the UK.

What is your favourite Sinfonia Cymru moment?
Bryn Terfel’s 50th Birthday Concert in the Royal Albert Hall. Witnessing Sting and Bryn Terfel’s duet of Roxanne was a real highlight!

What is your favourite musical moment elsewhere?
Last November I was involved in a collaboration with the European Union Youth Orchestra and Orquesta Sinfónica del ISA. We played the Finale of Beethoven 7 and then ended with a medley of Cuban music called ‘Conga’ in Havana Cathedral. Sitting next to some of the best Cuban musicians performing Cuban music was a masterclass in how to feel a rhythm and groove. It was incredible! The cathedral was packed and all the doors were open for the streets of Havana to hear. The atmosphere was electric! As you can imagine, it was quite hot as well.

What do you most like about being a professional musician?
The variety! Going from an orchestral concert to running a workshop with a brass quintet in a Special Needs School. Every gig is rewarding, in its own way!

When you’re not playing with Sinfonia Cymru what other orchestras, ensembles or projects are you involved with?
I’m currently on the Budapest Festival Orchestra Apprenticeship Scheme, which started recently with a tour of Mahler’s 5th Symphony in Budapest and New York. The audition was in front of the whole orchestra so I feel very lucky to now be able to play with them… instead of AT them.

What are your three favourite pieces of music, and why?

This list changes frequently but here are three things that have been on the playlist a lot lately:

  1. Them Changes by Thundercat – a great bassist with some serious heavy grooves.
  2. Romeo and Juliet by Prokofiev. It is beautiful!
  3. Braggin’ in Brass. Live in Cuba – Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. It’s fast, tight and completely outrageous!

Support Sinfonia Cymru

Donate now to give young musicians the very best start to their professional careers.

Find out more