Hailed by the New York Times for his “impeccable musicianship” and the Times of London as “arguably the best wind player of his generation”, Daniel Bates holds principal oboe positions with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the City of London Sinfonia and the Irish Chamber Orchestra. Previously, he also held the principal oboe position with the Royal Northern Sinfonia. He is the only oboe player in the world to simultaneously hold principal oboe positions on both modern and historical oboes. He has played principal oboe for all the major UK orchestras as well as many international orchestras, such as the National Philharmonic (Washington DC), the National Orchestra of Colombia, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra (Norway) and the West Australian Symphony Orchestra. As a session musician he has recorded for numerous pop acts and films, including several for Disney (most recently, the live action version of ‘The Little Mermaid’ with Alan Menken) the Harry Potter franchise and for Barbra Streisand, Mary J Blige, Rihanna and Stevie Wonder. He can also be heard playing all the oboe and English Horn solos on Amazon’s Lord of the Rings series ‘The Rings of Power’.
Born in London, United Kingdom, Daniel was offered scholarships to every music college in the country and chose to study at the Royal Academy of Music. This was followed by a music scholarship to study at Pembroke College, Cambridge University, where he read Music and the History of Art.
When he was eighteen years of age he became the youngest ever winner of the prestigious Royal Overseas League Music Competition. Daniel also won two other major international competitions; in Italy and Romania, as well as an English Speaking Union scholarship enabling him to study at the Banff Music Centre in Canada. He is a frequent invitee to the International Musicians Seminar at Prussia Cove in the UK, the Lockenhaus Music Festival in Germany and to the Yellow Barn festival in Vermont.
He has performed solo concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra, the City of London Sinfonia, the Irish Chamber Orchestra, the Brasov Filharmonica, the Turin Philharmonic Orchestra, the London Mozart Players and the English Chamber Orchestra. Solo recitals include venues such as the Wigmore Hall, the Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Usher Hall and the Purcell Room. Internationally, he has given solo recitals in venues such as the Pushkin Museum in Moscow and at various European festivals partnered with musicians of international renown including Cecilia Bartoli, Jörg Widmann, Elizabeth Leonskaya, Joan Rodgers and Anthony Marwood.
His solo and chamber music recordings include ‘Heatwave’, ‘One Note Away…’, ‘Pure Bliss’ and ‘Lamenting Lullaby’- all available on Spotify and Apple Music.
He has worked under some of the best conductors in the world, including Pierre Boulez, Marin Alsop, Sir Simon Rattle, Sir Bernard Haitink, Sir Colin Davis, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Sir Roger Norrington, Sir Charles Mackerras, Sir Mark Elder, Charles Dutoit, Kurt Masur, Nic McGegan, Ivan Fischer, Vladimir Jurowski, JoAnn Falletta, Evan Rogister and Simeone Tartaglione.
An enthusiastic educator, he has given masterclasses internationally (including at El Sistema in Caracas, Venezuela, and at several American Universities, such as Penn State University and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign) and has devised numerous musical performances for pre-school and older children. He has also taken leading roles in delivering musical workshops at psychiatric hospitals and musical bedside visits at children’s hospitals in the United Kingdom.
As an actor, having studied classical acting at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, his credits include the title role in ‘The Picture of Dorian Gray’ (Vienna’s English Theatre), Fedotik in Chekov’s ‘The Three Sisters’ (alongside Kristen Scott Thomas in London’s West End) and Adrian Green in ‘Casualty’ (BBC Television). Daniel is the founder and Artistic Director of FitzFest (www.fitzfest.co.uk), a community chamber music festival based in Fitzrovia, central London.
He now lives in Washington DC and has a Pomeranian dog called Fitz.