Joint Heads for School of Wind, Brass and Percussion

Congratulations to Kevin Gowland, Murray Greig and Simone Rebello, appointed joint Heads of the School of Wind, Brass and Percussion.

In addition, we’re delighted to share that Murray, no stranger to the RNCM, will also work as our new Director of Brass, complementing Kevin and Simone’s firmly established roles as Director of Woodwind and Director of Percussion respectively.

Murray, who has been a trumpet tutor at the College since 1989, studied at the RNCM with Howard Snell. For over 30 years he was Principal Trumpet with the Orchestra of Opera North, during which time he also appeared as guest Principal Trumpet with other leading orchestras and ensembles in the UK and overseas. Many of his former students now hold positions in orchestras throughout the world. 

Kevin Gowland Simone Rebello and Murray Greig

L-R RNCM Heads of Wind, Brass and Percussion: Kevin Gowland (Director of Woodwind), Simone Rebello (Director of Percussion) and Murray Greig (Director of Brass)

Alongside solo recitals and concerto appearances, Murray has performed chamber music with the Brass Ensemble of Opera North, the Orfeo Trumpet Consort and the Golden Section (previously the Wallace Collection) and has recorded with the London Trumpet Sound. He’s also given masterclasses at conservatoires throughout Europe and America and has worked as a trumpet professor for the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. 

He said: ‘I’m really excited to have the opportunity to be a part of the new leadership team in SWBP, alongside Kevin and Simone, giving me the opportunity to work closely with all of the fantastic brass students we have here at the RNCM, but also in and amongst the rest of the School. Continuing to build on our ground-breaking side-by-side learning projects, I foresee a very bright future for our incredibly talented and enthusiastic young musicians.’ 

Kevin and Simone, former Deputy Heads and Acting Heads of Wind, Brass and Percussion, added: ‘We’re absolutely delighted that Murray will be joining us as Director of Brass/Head of School. Having worked at the RNCM for over 30 years (and as an SWBP alumnus) Murray brings a huge amount of knowledge, insight, vision and expertise to the School, and we are very excited to be working with him going forwards.’ 

New Staff for 2022

Alongside Murray, the School is thrilled to announce three new appointments this summer: Andrea Zucco (International Visiting Tutor and Senior Tutor in Bassoon), Richard Ion (Tutor in Bassoon) and Gabor Varga (International Visiting Tutor in Clarinet). 

Andrea Zucco, Gabor Varga and Richard Ion

L-R Andrea Zucco, Gabor Varga and Richard Ion

Starting his career as member of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra at the age of 22, Andrea Zucco has been Principal Bassoon with the Rome Opera House and, since 2006, the Orchestra Nazionale di Santa Cecilia of Rome. He has performed all over the world with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunk, Bayerisches Staatsorchester, La Scala Theatre, Milan, Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie, and in 2008 was personally invited by Claudio Abbado to play Stravinsky’s Firebird at the Musikverein of Wien with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra. Alongside Abbado, Andrea works regularly with conductors Lorin Maazel, Kirill Petrenko, Daniel Harding, Gustavo Dudamel and Daniele Gatti. 

An RNCM alumnus, Richard Ion is Principal Bassoon with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. With the RPO he regularly records at Abbey Road Studios and has toured Europe, Asia and North America, performing at venues including the Royal Albert Hall and Carnegie Hall. In addition, Richard has worked with orchestras including the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Hallé, Royal Scottish National, Scottish Chamber, English National Opera, City of London Sinfonia, RTE National Symphony, Philharmonia, City of Birmingham Symphony, and Royal Ballet Sinfonia. 

Gabor Varga’s professional orchestral career began in 1995 when he was engaged as Principal Clarinet with the Györ Philharmonic Orchestra. In 1996 he became Principal of Concerto Budapest, and since 1997 has been Principal of the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. He has also served as Principal Clarinet with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and has worked with the Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra since 2001. 

Kevin said: ‘I am absolutely delighted that Andrea Zucco and Gabor Varga will be joining our team of SWBP International Visiting Tutors from September. I am really looking forward to working with them and our other IVTs-Andrea Oliva, Philippe Tondre and Timothy McAllister.

As we enter a new era in SWBP,  I am also very excited that in addition to his role as IVT, Andrea Zucco will be our Senior Tutor in Bassoon and will be joined by alumnus Richard Ion who will become a Tutor in Bassoon from September.”

Applications for 2023 entry are now opening. Click here for information on how to apply.  

19 July 2022