Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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Nicholas Ormrod



The origins of Nick’s percussion career can be traced back to when he was just 8 years old and pestering his parents about his dream to be Ringo Starr. He learnt to read music whilst singing in his local church choir, but he always wanted to play the drums. He was lucky enough to be able to learn orchestral percussion in his secondary school in South Wales. At first he was very interested in contemporary music and this led him to study under percussionist James Blades, a long-time associate of Benjamin Britten. It was Blades’ work and research into the history of percussion instruments and their repertoire, as well as Nick’s inquisitive nature, that led him down the path of historically informed performance. Now holding the post of Principal Percussion, he was attracted to the collaborative nature of music making with OAE, and the healthy relationships it has with its conductors. Memorable performances with OAE include Glyndebourne 2015 Saul, and La Mer with Sir Simon Rattle. Outside music, Nick is a big rugby fan, attending games at his local club Rosslyn Park, and he also enjoys seeking out and sampling unusual craft beers. If he hadn’t been a musician he would have been an architect, and followed in his builder grandfather’s footsteps of building his own house. Before a concert, you will find Nick at the venue early to ensure that the instruments are ready despite the vagaries of the weather and air-conditioning.

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