After completing his undergraduate degree in 2011, Jonny was awarded scholarships by The Leverhulme Trust and The Worshipful Company of Pattenmakers to continue studying for a master’s at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Here he studied under Paul Beniston, Paul Cosh, Anne McAneney and Steve Keavy and was a finalist in the annual Armourers and Brasiers brass prize. His performance highlights include BBC Radio 3's ‘Hear and Now’ programme playing the music of Jonathan Harvey as well as a side-by-side workshop and performance of Berg's Kammerkonzert with the LSO under Michael Tilson-Thomas.
Jonny graduated with an MMus with distinction in 2012 and has since pursued a career as a freelance musician and teacher. Working extensively with Riverside Brass, a quintet he co-founded in 2010 with colleagues from the Royal College of Music, Jonny has enjoyed a number of opportunities such as recitals and most recently the chance to record and produce a CD of Christmas arrangements created by the ensemble. This closed a busy year for the group, who also provided music at St. Pancras International for both the arrival and departure of European Olympic and Paralympic teams.
In addition to his trumpet playing, Jonny is a keen songwriter and performer with his band Professor Penguin. The band enjoyed considerable critical acclaim in 2012 after the release of the debut album Planes, with Brian Eno calling the first single Pilot “a beautiful piece”. The song was consequently played on BBC Radio 1 and 6 and Professor Penguin were invited to perform a session for John Kennedy on XFM. Alternative music is an area of particular passion for Jonny and he has enjoyed performing live, in the studio and on the radio for artists such as Public Service Broadcasting, Bastille, To Kill a King and LAYLA.
In his spare time Jonny enjoys playing, watching and talking about football. Once a season ticket holder to Wimbledon he now lives on the edge following AFC Wimbledon in League 2.
Guildhall School of Music and Drama
Royal College of Music
What or who inspired you to become a professional musician?
I was first inspired to play the trumpet at the age of seven after hearing the soundtrack to The Blues Brothers film and in particular the track “Everybody needs somebody to love”. From that point on I was pretty hooked, but having the opportunity to see Wynton Marsalis perform at the Royal Albert Hall, Radiohead play at Reading festival and with some amazing teachers I quickly knew that being a professional musician was the only thing for me.
If you were going to be sent to a desert island, which three items would you take with you?
My trumpet and guitar would be a given, but the third item would be harder to choose. I think I would have to go for the complete works of Murakami. I was introduced to his books by a good friend of mine and have since read The Wind Up Bird Chronicle. They are really amazing books and have the ability to transport you somewhere else. So if times got hard on the island I'd just sit with a coconut and one of his novels under a tree.