Englishman Brett Baker is viewed internationally as a leading brass performer and educator. He is passionate about encouraging composers to write pioneering new repertoire being one of the most recorded brass soloists. Brett was Programme Leader for Musical Arts (previously band musicianship) at the University of Salford (Manchester). He continues to be an ambassador for Michael Rath Brass Instruments and is Principal Trombone of the Black Dyke Band and General Manager for Geneva Instruments.
As well as a performance schedule of 60 concerts a year, Brett enjoys presenting workshops, specialising in solo performance and band training. Brett has produced over 30 solo albums, 8 under his own label of White River Evocations, which produces and distributes CDs. He has performed as guest soloist on a further 46 CDs. He regularly tours in the USA, Europe, Australia and New Zealand as a soloist, teacher, conductor and adjudicator. As a consultant, Brett, has worked with Michael Rath Musical Instruments for over 10 years on instrument design and has assisted in production of a signature mouthpiece.
As a conductor, Brett has many associations with bands in the North of England, and has achieved contest successes with Northop, Ratby and Longridge bands. He has been guest conductor of the University of Salford Brass Band, the brass band at the Royal Northern College of Music, Thoresby Colliery, Carlton Main Frickley Colliery and the Leyland Band. In 2014 Brett conducted Tongwynlais Temperance at the National Finals of Great Britain in the Royal Albert Hall, London. Brett was conductor of the University of Salford Symphonic Wind Band from 2014-2019. He is currently Musical Director of both the Yorkshire Youth Brass Band and North East Midlands Youth Brass Band.
For over 20 years, Brett Baker has been keen to promote new music for the trombone, commissioning over one hundred works from composers and arrangers such as Barry, Broughton, Clarke, Davoren, Dewhurst, Duncan, Ellerby, Farr, Fernie, Forgie, Graham, Gregson, Harper, Higgins, Lovatt-Cooper, Newton, Pankhurst, Price, Sparke, Wilby, Wiffin, Wills and Wilkinson
As an adjudicator, Brett, has judged the International Trombone Association in the USA, the National Solo Championships in Switzerland, many Association contests, the National Finals in the Netherlands and Lithuania, New Zealand and Australia, and most of the Area Qualifiers for the National Championships of Great Britain. He is trombone tutor of the National Youth Brass Band of Scotland, and the International Brass Band Summer School in Swansea as well as low brass tutor of the International Summer School in Dartington, Devon.
David’s musical journey began in Invercargill and Dunedin. Apart from a brief stint in the United Kingdom, the majority of his teaching and conducting career has been in Christchurch. During this period, David directed the Christchurch Youth Symphonic Band, developed band programmes in several Christchurch secondary schools, and conducted the Woolston Brass Band. During David’s tenure Woolston Brass enjoyed success in competitions as well as undertaking successful overseas tours and producing several recordings. David was instrumental in fostering the commissioning of New Zealand works for band, not only for Woolston Brass but also for the National Band of New Zealand, which he directed from 2003 to 2005.
In 2010 David was awarded an MNZM for Services to New Zealand Music. After leading the music department at St Joseph’s College in Geelong, David is delighted to be back in New Zealand as the seventh Director of Music for the Royal New Zealand Air Force Band based in Wellington.