David Cousins began playing the double bass through Sandwell Youth Music in the West Midlands before earning a sixth-form music scholarship at Repton School in Derbyshire. He went on to study at the Royal College of music and Trinity College of music in London with Chris West, also performing in masterclasses with eminent bass players Joel Quarrington, Dominic Seldis, Paul Ellison and Neil Tarlton.
David has played with many orchestras and chamber ensembles including the City of London Sinfonia, Symphony Orchestra of India in Bombay, London Contemporary Orchestra and Varna Symphony Orchestra from Bulgaria. Much of his time is spent enjoying working with various Opera companies including Glyndebourne on Tour, Garsington Opera, Opera della Luna and performances at the Tete a Tete festival in Hammersmith. He was involved recently at Garsington Opera as a stage musician in a particularly riotous production of Don Giovanni. He also plays regularly with St Paul’s Sinfonia, Orpheus Sinfonia and the newly established London Firebird Orchestra.
Recent projects have included working with Steven Isserlis at Cheltenham festival, stand-up comic musician Rainer Hersch at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, performing the Schubert Octet at the Orpheus and Bacchus festival in France and a performance of John Adams’ Harmonielehre at a multi-storey car park in Peckham.
Aside from playing the double bass, David is a lifelong Aston Villa supporter and keen follower of Test cricket. He enjoys Real Ale and long city walks exploring historical and architectural places of interest. This year he has attempted to start learning the Polish language.
Did you know? David is running the 2014 Oxford Half Marathon as part of a team of 25 Southbank Sinfonia musicians and staff. Find out more >
What is your earliest musical memory?
My best early memory would be the wonderful teachers from Sandwell Youth Music (West Midlands) demonstrating all the instruments of the orchestra during a special assembly at school and then being told you can learn to play any one of them! It was the sound of the Bass that really captured me from then.
If you could play another instrument, what would it be and why?
It would definitely be the Viola. The chance to experience the middle of the harmony, to play string quartets, the opening of Mahler 10 and play an instrument with such a rich bumble-bee like tone.
David’s place in Southbank Sinfonia is generously supported by the Headley Trust.