A horn player based in London, Jonathan studied Mathematics and Music at Cardiff University before moving to London to complete a master’s at the Royal Academy of Music, graduating with first class honours in 2014.
Jonathan enjoys a busy career as an orchestral player, having been involved in projects with the Britten-Pears Orchestra – including an award-winning recording, cinema release and BBC Radio 3 live performance of Peter Grimes. Jonathan performs regularly throughout London’s finest venues and across the country with the likes of the Orion Orchestra, Multi-Story Orchestra, Sinfonia Cymru, Orpheus Sinfonia, Janus Ensemble, Orchestra Vitae and Hampstead Garden Opera.
As a soloist, Jonathan has enjoyed performing the Britten Serenade, Jacob Horn Concerto, Mathias Horn Concerto and Strauss and Mozart concerti with various orchestras. Jonathan is a particularly keen chamber musician and is a member of Magnard Ensemble, recent chamber music fellows of the Royal Academy of Music and CAVATINA Chamber Music Trust ensemble. Magnard Ensemble are currently delivering and recording a Roald Dahl-themed education tour and CD, and are deeply committed to their education work, alongside chamber performances across London and the UK.
An advocate for contemporary music of all genres, Jonathan has worked closely with composer Alex Brusentsev on the Connect the Dots project. He has had works written for him by Ethan Davies, Strombus for solo horn, Martin Humphries, Concerto for Horn and Sound Technician, and he has collaborated closely with pop soloist Nick Webb who released his debut EP The Magpie Turns in 2016.
Besides Jonathan’s musical interests, he also enjoys running and in 2013 ran the London Marathon in under four hours for the charity Action on Hearing Loss.
What’s on your playlist right now?
Laura Mvula. One of the most talented pop and jazz artists around – I saw her perform live and was blown away by her stage presence, talent and how stylish her live renditions were. I also have Ligeti’s Six Bagatelles on repeat at the moment – my quintet, Magnard Ensemble, are performing them in Lucerne soon and I need to get my head around all the rhythms!
What do you do with your time when you’re not playing music?
I really enjoy running and keeping up with the football. My local team, Brighton and Hove Albion, are doing well at the moment so it’s been nice to watch them develop into such a well-run club. I love the freedom of running – as well as the physical benefits, I love the mental space it gives too, allowing my thoughts to roam whilst enjoying the great scenery as it whistles past. I took this to the extreme in 2013, running the London Marathon for Action of Hearing Loss – a charity that helped my late grandmother a lot. I ran it in under 4 hours and raised £1700 for them, through kind donations and a charity chamber music series I set up in Lewes, Sussex. I got more of a kick raising the money for charity than running the marathon!
Tell us something about yourself that might surprise us
I studied my undergraduate in maths and music, at Cardiff University. I’m a bit of a horn geek, so maybe it’s not that surprising that I studied a geeky subject like maths too… I enjoyed it a lot, but had such an inspiring horn teacher in Cardiff (Donald Clist of WNO) that I spent far too much time practising and not enough time working on calculus and complex analysis… I still remember one module I took, called Knots – it actually was a module in undoing knots (mathematically of course)! I didn’t do very well in it though, the lecture room was a little too comfortably warm and I enjoyed catching up on sleep instead of untying knots…
Twitter - @JonathanFarey