Born in London, Amy Harman studied at the Royal College of Music with Andrea de Flammineis, Julie Price and Martin Gatt, and with František Herman at the Hudební Fakulta Akademie Múzických Umění in Prague. In 2011 she was appointed Principal Bassoon of the Philharmonia Orchestra at the age of 24. She was selected for representation by Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) in 2014.
Passionate about bringing the bassoon to a wider audience, in 2012 Amy appeared as a ‘flying soloist’ in Birmingham Opera’s premiere of Stockhausen’s Mittwoch aus Licht where she played from a trapeze suspended above the audience. Engagements during 2014/15 include a performance of Strauss’s Concertino with the English Chamber Orchestra and solo recitals in Hamburg, Wigmore Hall, Purcell Room, The Sage Gateshead, Bath International, Lichfield and Devizes Festivals. She takes part in chamber music festivals with Paul Lewis, Nicholas Daniel and Guy Johnston and gives a series of concerts with Camerata Pacifica in California. This autumn Amy has been invited to IMS Prussia Cove and in 2016 returns to Wigmore Hall.
As a chamber musician Amy has been a member of Ensemble 360 since 2010, giving concerts at major venues and festivals throughout the UK. She has performed at festivals internationally collaborating with artists including Radovan Vlatkovic, Aleksander Mazdar, Natalia Gutman, Jack Liebeck, Charles Neidich and the Chilingirian Quartet.
Between 2009-2011 Amy was Principal Bassoon of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. She has appeared as guest principal with the London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, Scottish Chamber, Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Aurora Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony, London Chamber and Hallé Orchestras. During her studies she trained with the European Union Youth and Britten Pears Orchestras.
Amy is a Professor at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Royal Academy of Music.
“…it was clear that Sakari Oramo and the BBC Symphony Orchestra were the ones who would have to keep tabs – which they did with unbelievable clarity and generosity of spirit, right from guest principal bassoonist Amy Harman’s soulful counterpoint to the opening melody.” – The Arts Desk / BBC SO at the Barbican / January 2015
“…the high point of the evening was the playing of Amy Harman….who gave the most stunning performance of immense artistry and the most assured technical ability in her exquisite performance of Weber’s Bassoon Concerto. The sheer tonal beauty of sound she magically drew from her instrument was memorable indeed.”
– MusicWeb International-Arthur Butterworth / Haffner Orchestra / 2010
“The Dance Suite opened almost as pure rhythm, gradually melodised, as it were, by Amy Harman’s superb bassoon solo.” – Seen and Heard International / Philharmonia Orchestra / September 2011
“I doubt that he could possibly have matched Amy Harman in richness of tone or precision.” – Seen and Heard International / Philharmonia Orchestra Rite of Spring / June 2013
“Bassoonist Amy Harman and clarinettist Barnaby Robson were particularly exquisite, taking, and excelling in, lead roles in all the symphony’s movements.”
– Bachtrack / Philharmonia Orchestra-Beethoven Symphony No.4 / February 2012
* Photo by Kaupo Kikkas