Cookies and Privacy

The University uses cookies on this website to provide the best experience possible including delivering personalised content on this website, other websites and social media. By continuing to use the site you agree to this, or your can go to our cookie policy to learn more and manage your settings.

David Chadwick

BMus & AdvPGDip (violin)
Year graduated: 2005

It was a gut instinct to study BMus (Violin) at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire - at the Open Day, I immediately liked the atmosphere and knew I wanted to study there. So much so, I even withdrew my applications elsewhere!

I had a great time at the Conservatoire. Still now, several concerts are fresh in my memory - it was fantastic experience to prepare and perform as a soloist with orchestra. It was at the Conservatoire that I formed my first long-term chamber music partnerships and that quickly became a focus. I also valued the opportunities available for periods of study abroad; I spent some of my third year of my BMus in Weimar and, before starting my AdvPgDip course, I spent a year in Budapest. It was all about continuing to broaden my horizons.

Looking back, I now realise how important the breadth of experience I amassed at the Conservatoire was. My career today is hugely varied and I am required to constantly adapt as a player, stylistically, gesturally even. Even when still a student I played in all kinds of positions, from back desk to leader, in new commissions for chamber ensemble to mainstream symphony orchestra repertoire. I still remember playing a Haydn symphony for the very first time in the first term of my first year - love at first downbeat. Obviously, the challenge of preparing for solo assessments and academic work was central to my development but at the time I didn't fully appreciate how formative my ensemble experience was.

After graduating I moved to Glasgow to join the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and later moved to the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. I left Scotland in 2014 to be freelance, based in London. My diary is now a rather complex jigsaw of work with symphony, chamber and opera orchestras all around the UK, often as principal second violin. It is usually hectic and often pressured, but I love the variety and flexibility. I have recently been getting increasingly involved in traditional music, even taking up a new instrument - the nyckelharpa. As to future plans, who knows? That's often part and parcel of being a musician, my musical education continues each day!