Nicholas Cox


"Truly lovely playing by Nicholas Cox" Stephen Johnson, The Independent.
"Superb playing" The Gramophone.
"The ideal Mozart experience…exquisite…as good as anything in the present recording catalogue. Wonderful, mellifluous, apparently effortless playing of the type an audience can dream of" Joe Riley, Liverpool Echo.
Nicholas Cox's recording of the Mozart Clarinet Concerto and Quintet (ClassCD 1502) was released on the RLPO Live/Classico label in May 2003. In its first week it was CD of the week on Classic FM and has featured regularly on the airwaves ever since.
Gold Medalist at the 1984 Royal Over-Seas League Music Competition in London and 2nd prizewinner at the 1987 Jeunesses Musicales International Clarinet Competition, Nick has since played concertos with City of London Sinfonia, North German Radio, Prague Symphony Orchestra, the RLPO and Milton Keynes City Orchestra.
Nicholas's reputation as a player is also matched by a teaching career of distinction. Senior Tutor, Clarinet at the RNCM for eight years, his pupil Mark Simpson became the first musician to win both BBC Young Musician and BBC Young Composer of the Year awards in 2006.
After reading music at St Catharine's College, Cambridge, Nicholas studied clarinet with Hans Deinzer in Hanover on a German Government Scholarship and at the Aspen Music School on an English Speaking Union Scholarship. In 1992, he was appointed Principal Clarinet of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra with whom he has played concertos by Copland, Weber, Nielsen, Bruch, Richard Strauss and Mozart. He has also been Principal Clarinet of Milton Keynes City Orchestra since 1991. He has appeared as Guest Principal with most of Britain's orchestras.
As a soloist he has appeared at Britain's most important festivals and halls including the Wigmore and Queen Elizabeth Halls, Edinburgh Festival, Cheltenham, Bath, Brighton and Huddersfield.
An enthusiastic advocate of new music for the clarinet, Nicholas gave the world première of the Clarinet Concerto by Adam Gorb in 1999 commissioned for him by the RLPO. Other composers who have written new works for him include Hugh Wood, Sir Richard Rodney Bennett, Jonathan Lloyd, Andrei Eshpai, Yuri Kasparov, Alan Ridout, Peter Fribbins, Emily Howard Matilda Brown and Francis Routh.
In 2005 he gave the first BBC broadcast of Giya Kancheli's haunting work 'Midday Prayers' in the presence of the composer. In 2007 he gave the premires of works by David Horne with Ensemble 10/10 and a Clarinet Quintet by Hugh Wood commissioned by the Rodewald Society. In November 2007 he gave a major recital at Liverpool Hope University for clarinet and electronics with Matthew Fairclough (sound projection) including Boulez's classic 1980s work Dialogue de l'ombre double and 2 commissioned works from Matthew Fairclough and Ian Percy.
His earlier recordings include CDs of sonatas by Brahms and Reger (1994, United:Cala 88012), Bliss's Clarinet Quintet (Redcliffe 010) together with works by Rawsthorne and Routh, Stravinsky's Soldier's Tale for Naxos (Northern Chamber Orchestra) and the complete Beethoven and Nielsen Symphonies with the RLPO. His performance of Richard Strauss's late Duet Concertino with the RLPO under Gerard Schwarz was released in 2005. Plans in 2008 include a CD of British Music.
In 1997 he founded Ensemble 10/10, the new music group of the RLPO and has since single-handedly revived the Rodewald Concert Society (founded in 1911 and named after Alfred Rodewald a Liverpool benefactor and great friend of Edward Elgar) to promote concerts of chamber music in Liverpool. Most of the current season's concerts have been sold out.
He has been a clarinet design consultant for Yamaha for several years and plays on Yamaha CSGH clarinets with his own design of bell. He is also research active producing new editions of works for clarinet by Francois Devienne for Edition HH and by Mieczyslaw Weinberg for Peer Music Hamburg. His edition of Devienne's 1st Sonata has been included in the Associated Board Grade VIII syllabus. The 3rd Devienne Sonata is due for publication this year.
Orchestral Work
Orchestras: Academy of St Martin In The Fields, BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Halle Orchestra, Milton Keynes City Orchestra, Opera North Orchestra, Oxford Philomusica, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
Nicholas's orchestral work also includes the Philharmonic Welsh and Concert Orchestras, Northern Sinfonia, Orchestra of St John's Smith Square, Music Projects, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Bournemouth Symphony & Sinfonietta, London Classical Players, Hanover Band, Albion Ensemble, Redcliffe Ensemble, Endymion Ensemble, Wallace Collection
Nicholas's schooling took place at King's School, Canterbury (Music Scholarship, 1972 – 1976). Nicholas's graduate studies took place at St Catherine's College, Cambridge (Choral Exhibition to read Music, 1977 – 1980), Musikhochschule Hannover (1980 – 1985) and National Centre for Orchestral Studies (1982 – 1983).
Prizes and Awards
DAAD scholarship for study in Hannover (1980 – 1982)
Robert Mayer Aspen Scholarship (1984)
Jeunesses Musicales International Clarinet Competition (2nd prize & Union of Yugoslav Composer's Performance Award, 1987)
NFMS Young Artists Award (1981)
Park Lane Group Young Artists Series (1983)
Royal Overseas League Music Festival (Gold Medal, Barclays Bank Award and B&H Wind Prize, 1984)
Teachers: Colin Bradbury, Hans Deinzer, Guy Deplus, Jack Brymer
Nicholas joined Morgensterns in November 1985.