RICHARD JENKINSON started to play the cello at the age of five. Before leaving school he had studied the instrument with Florence Hooton and William Pleeth, and conducting with Michael Salter. He won a scholarship to the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, studying cello with Raphael Wallfisch and William Pleeth, and conducting with Alan Hazeldine. He graduated with Distinction in 1994 and was awarded the Guildhall’s coveted Gold Medal for a performance of the Dvořák Cello Concerto in the Barbican.
Richard has given concerto performances with the BBC Concert Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Irish Chamber Orchestra and Venezuelan Symphony, and has performed the Elgar Concerto in the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London and the Dvořák Concerto in the Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum in Prague. In 1995 he was appointed principal cello with the Irish Chamber Orchestra and from 1998 to 2016 was principal cello with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.
In May 2012 Richard joined the Dante String Quartet and has performed at the Wigmore Hall and Kings Place, and also given several live BBC Radio 3 broadcasts. The quartet’s ‘Beethoven journey’ was also featured on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
Richard is Musical Director of the British Police Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra of St John, Bromsgrove. From 2016 to 2019 he was Music Director of the orchestra and choir of the GKT Music Society at King’s College, London and, since September 2017, has been conductor of the Worcestershire Youth Orchestra. He has conducted cycles of the complete Beethoven symphonies and piano concertos with the Orchestra of St John, culminating with the Ninth Symphony in Worcester cathedral. In May 2019 he conducted the British Police Symphony Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall, celebrating the orchestra’s 30th anniversary, with fanfare trumpets, troupes of bagpipers and massed choirs from around the United Kingdom, involving over 600 performers.