Tuba player Ross earns academy place

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Ross Knight, a 23-year-old tuba player from Carnoustie, has earned himself a very prestigious place at the Karajan Academy.

This is the Orchestra Academy of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Ross and 25 other tuba players from across the world under the age of 27 were invited to audition in front of a panel of players from the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, including its current tuba player Alexander von Puttkamer.

He impressed them enough to be offered the placement, which started on December 1. Throughout his two years, Ross will be taught and mentored by Alexander von Puttkamer while embedded in the orchestra. Over and above, Ross is currently studying a Masters Degree at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien in Hannover, studying under Danish tuba professor Jens Bjørn-Larsen.

He graduated with a first class honours degree and a Professional Diploma with distinction from the Royal Academy of Music in London, where he spent five years under the tutorship of Patrick Harrild, the principal tuba player with the London Symphony Orchestra.

This year, Ross has performed with the London Symphony Orchestra, performing ‘Symphonie Fantastique’, and also the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House where he recently spent a week playing in the Romeo and Juliet ballet, choreographed by the late Kenneth MacMillan.

His ultimate goal is to secure a seat in an orchestra as a professional tuba player, as well as teaching and playing as a soloist. Through the Academy he will be trained to prepare for auditions, as well as gaining experience playing with one of the world’s top professional orchestras. He also plans to work on his solo playing, in Hannover with Jens Bjørn-Larsen, with a view to entering competitions in Germany and further afield.

Ross will be working with the Berlin Philharmonic between December 9 and 20 to prepare for his first performances with the orchestra, as guest principal tuba, in Claude Debussy’s opera ‘Pelléas et Mélisande’ conducted by the famous Sir Simon Rattle. This will be streamed live on December 20 and details can be found on the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra website.