Robin O'Neill

Robin O'Neill - Bassoon

Principal Bassoon of the Philharmonia Orchestra


Robin O’Neill is principal bassoonist with the Philharmonia Orchestra and has held the same position with the English Chamber Orchestra and as a founder member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.


Principal bassoonist with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain where he played under Pierre Boulez, Charles Dutoit and Rudolph Schwartz, Robin then studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Martin Gatt and Graham Sheen. Whilst at the GSMD Robin was principal bassoonist with the European Community Youth Orchestra where he played under Claudio Abbado, Daniel Barenboim and Herbert von Karajan.


A founder member and player’s committee member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Robin played the Mozart Bassoon Concerto on their first tour to Australia and Singapore. He also recorded the Mozart Wind Serenades and Sinfonia Concertante with Alexander Schneider.

He then joined the English Chamber Orchestra where he recorded the Mozart Piano Concertos and Piano and Wind Quintet with Mitsuko Uchida and toured Japan and the USA several times. With the ECO he also worked with Pinchas Zuckerman, Daniel Barenboim, Murray Perahia, Antal Dorati, Sir Georg Solti and Christoph Eschenbach before being invited to join the Philharmonia Orchestra.

During his career with the Philharmonia, Robin O’Neil has played in all the major concert halls of the world under conductors such as Sanderling, Svetlanov, Levine, Giulini, Dohnanyi, Maazel, Muti, Salonen, Temirkanov, Sinopoli, Dudamel, Ashkenazy and composers such as Thomas Ades and George Benjamin.


Always an active chamber musician, Robin is a member of London Winds and the Gaudier Ensemble. He is a Grammy nominated recording artist and has recorded more than 40 CDs on labels such as Hyperion, Chandos, Decca and Philips. He has collaborated with musicians such as Mikhail Pletnev, Mitsuko Uchida, Christoph Eschenbach, Boris Betezovsky, Stephen Kovacevich, Alexander Madzar, Pinchas Zuckerman and Michael Collins. He has also performed the Mozart Bassoon Concerto by invitation for His Royal Highness Prince Charles the Prince of Wales.


Currently Visiting Professor of Bassoon at the Royal Academy of Music in London, Robin is also professor of conducting at the Royal College of Music in London and pursues a parallel career as conductor, having conducted countless symphony orchestras including the Philharmonia Orchestra and Chorus, London Philharmonic, the English Chamber Orchestra, Belgrade Philharmonic, Trondheim Symphony, Bogota Philharmonic and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.


Hear Robin performing on the bassoon here  and hear a recording with Robin conducting  here


Robin O'Neill

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