Martin Lawrence has been the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment’s second horn since 1995.
Martin grew up in Cumbria, before studying Physics at the university of York and then the horn at Trinity College of Music. As well as playing with the OAE, he works with other ensembles such as the English Concert and Il Giardino Armonico, and is a qualified masseur. Married to OAE violinist Joanna Lawrence, they have two lovely children aged 12 and 9, both musicians of course. Stan plays trumpet and jazz piano, whilst Nona chose the violin and tuba. The Lawrence Family Band has already been formed. Watch this space.
Why did you decide to play your instrument?
My dad’s mate, who was an amateur horn player, said “that baby has the right shaped lips to play the horn”. Not sure if he was right, but you can blame him for it.
What’s the hardest thing about playing the horn?
I’m trying to think of anything that’s not hard. However well prepared you are, it can catch you out, which is both it’s danger and charm. It’s also why the players too are dangerous and charming.
If you had to play only one composer for the rest of your career, who would you choose?
Haydn. Clear, human, profound. Great second horn parts.
What’s your favourite thing to do when you’re not making music?
Work-wise: teaching Free Your Playing, which I have devised to help musicians with performance tension. See my website for more details… Out of work: mushroom hunting
What are the most played tracks on your mp3 player?
‘Has my gal been round here’ – Devil in the Woodpile
Wa-she-poh – Perry Silverbird
Chant final – Rallye trompes de Paris