The London Bridge Trio is one of Britain’s leading chamber ensembles, known for their deeply nuanced and searching interpretations. Originally formed in 2002 as the London Bridge Ensemble, they continue to prioritise strong, composer-led programmes and collaborate with regular guest artists. Their name reflects an admiration for English music of the early twentieth century, which forms part of the group’s varied repertoire and is represented by their hugely successful Frank Bridge recordings.
Over recent years the trio has appeared frequently in London with Wigmore Hall and Kings Place concerts as well as a residency at St John’s Smith Square, entitled ‘Brahms and his World’, which represented four aspects of his composing life with mixed combinations and song. Their concert of Czech music at Champs Hill in Sussex was broadcast live by BBC Radio 3, and their concerts at St George’s Bristol were broadcast as a series of BBC Radio 3 Lunchtime Concerts. The group has also appeared at venues including Queen's Hall, St George’s and the Ponte de Lima Festival (Portugal).
The London Bridge Trio has a strong reputation in the recording field. In 2019 the trio released ‘The Leipzig Circle’, a new disc of works celebrating unheard female composers from the 1800s, involving the works of Felix and Fanny Mendelssohn and Robert and Clara Schumann (SOMM Recordings). The disc, Volume 1 of a trio of CDs (they will record the complete piano trios by Schumann and Mendelssohn), garnered high praise; The Telegraph called it “a total delight… The performers do the works proud.” Gramophone Magazine and BBC Music Magazine joined The Telegraph in praising the new disc: “Everything here is played with sensitivity and conviction” (Gramophone); “The London Bridge Trio offer a fascinating glimpse into Leipzig… their works inhabit distinctive, highly Romantic soundworlds full of invention and drama” (BBC Music Magazine).
In Autumn 2015 the trio released a disc of Dvorak Piano Quartets on the Champs Hill label, with guest violist Gary Pomeroy of the Heath Quartet. The album received rave reviews in Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine (double five stars) and the Observer. The ensemble’s recordings of works by Frank Bridge were also released by Dutton and met with plaudits from the critics, including unreserved commendations from Gramophone Magazine, International Record Review, American Record Guide and BBC Radio 3 (CD Review). Their second Bridge disc was shortlisted for the Gramophone Chamber Music Award 2011. Their Schumann recording for Sonimage Classics drew observations such as "rendered with a bubbling brilliance", and "heart touchingly eloquent" from the Sunday Times. A collection of works by Fauré followed on Sonimage Classics, and received excellent reviews from both The Strad and Gramophone magazines.
Thought-provoking pre-concert talks and lecture-recitals are something the trio is increasingly known for, and their collaboration with Richard Wigmore continues, exploring together the influences, connections and history of masterworks for the genre. The trio also has a long association with baritone Ivan Ludlow, enabling the inclusion of Lieder alongside connected chamber works.
In 2008 the ensemble founded its own festival, the Winchester Chamber Music Festival, in the hometown of their cellist Kate Gould. The festival welcomes capacity audiences each year in late April/early May and the trio have secured their reputation for stylish programmes involving exceptional international artists. In 2018 the festival celebrated its tenth anniversary with the world premiere of a new work written for the trio by Colin Matthews, ‘Hidden Agenda’, and the trio were joined by the Heath Quartet for a series of sold-out concerts. Guest artists have included the Gould trio and the Navarra quartet as well as members of the Elias Quartet and Kungsbacka Trio.
As well as his commitments with the London Bridge Trio, David Adams is leader of the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera. In his role at WNO David has performed several concertos with the orchestra and enjoys directing concerts from the violin. Their future plans include Prokofiev Violin Concerto No. 2, ‘self-drive’ performances of Beethoven Symphony No. 4 and a tour of Viennese concerts in the New Year.
Equally at home on violin and viola, David makes regular guest appearances, recordings and broadcasts with the Nash Ensemble, Endellion String Quartet, Gould Piano Trio and Hebrides Ensemble. He has recorded the complete Brahms Piano Quartets with the Gould Piano Trio and the Beethoven String Quintets with the Endellion String Quartet. He regularly attends the International Musicians'
Seminar at Prussia Cove. David also appears as guest leader with most of the orchestras in the UK including with Hallé, BBCSSO, BBC NOW, BBC Phil, BBCSO, SCO, RSNO and also the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Coming from a musical family, his father was Principal Viola of the Halle Orchestra, and David is married to the cellist Alice Neary. Together Alice and David are artistic directors of the Penarth Chamber Music Festival which takes place each summer in Penarth Pier Pavilion. After being encouraged and guided by his father his principal teachers include Daniel Phillips, Zvi Zeitlin, Malcolm Layfield and Misha Amory (viola).
Kate Gould held an entrance scholarship at the Royal Academy of Music from 1990 and went on to study in Berlin at the Hochschule der Künste. During this time she was selected for the BBC Young Artists Forum and Tillett Trust schemes. She also formed the Leopold String Trio which went on to sustain a distinguished international career until their swan song in 2008 at London’s Barbican Centre - Tippett’s Triple Concerto with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, broadcast live on BBC Radio 3. After their hugely successful debut recordings of the complete Beethoven String Trios for Hyperion Records they soon became BBC New Generations Artists and ECHO Rising Stars, as well as gaining a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award. Kate curated a prestigious 3-year series of twelve concerts at Wigmore Hall, inviting their regular collaborative artists such as Paul Lewis and Marc Andre Hamelin, and the trio went on to win the 2005 Royal Philharmonic Society’s Chamber Music Award.
Meanwhile in 2007 Kate and Dan founded the flourishing Winchester Chamber Music Festival. She recently became the festival’s sole artistic director but the London Bridge Trio continue to be central. She also co-directs the Ironstone Chamber Music Festival in north Oxfordshire. Kate recently performed at the Aldeburgh and Sacconi Folkstone festivals and regularly appears at chamber music festivals in Peasmarsh, Penarth, Corbridge, Wye Valley and the Festival de los Siete Lagos, Argentina. In 2019 she performed with Jack Liebeck at the Laeszhalle, Hamburg, and in Cologne for an Offenbach theatre project on gut strings. Her recent performance of Beethoven Cello Sonatas at Martin Randall’s Castle Hotel, Taunton, will be repeated at Trinity College, Dublin, in October.
Kate has been a member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe since 2000 and is often invited to chamber, symphony and ‘period performance’ orchestras as their guest principal cellist. Kate has been a professor of cello at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and coached last year on the ‘Cadenza’ summer course. This summer she had hoped to coach on a chamber music course in Bergamo, Italy, as well as the Welsh National Youth Orchestra summer course.
Daniel Tong was born in Cornwall and studied in London. His musical life is spent performing as soloist and chamber musician, writing and teaching. Outside the UK he has recently performed in France, Belgium and Portugal. In 2012 he recorded his first solo CD of works by Schubert for Quartz, Gramophone magazine describing him as “an extraordinarily sympathetic Schubertian.” He is shortly to record solo works by Brahms for Resonus Classics.
Praised by The Guardian for his ‘masterly pianism', Daniel has collaborated with the Elias, Navarra, Heath, Callino, Dante, Carducci and Allegri quartets as well as singers Raphaela Papadakis, Mary Bevan, Stephan Loges and Paul Agnew. He has a regular duo with baritone Ivan Ludlow. Other recent CD releases have included the Brahms and Beethoven cello sonatas (on period instruments) with
Robin Michael for Resonus Classics and works by Schubert, David Matthews and Fauré with violinist Sara Trickey for Deux-Elles (described by Gramophone as ‘definitive’). Each year Daniel plays with an array of wonderful individual artists, often at his own chamber festival: founded in 1999, the Wye Valley Chamber Music Festival attracts many exciting chamber musicians to spend ten days making music in an area of outstanding natural beauty. The Festival has become a well-established and treasured event in the region’s cultural life, also gaining national attention for its creative spirit and artistic vibrancy.
Daniel’s Beethoven Plus project has been a vibrant addition to his life over the past five years. Alongside Krysia Osostowicz, he commissioned ten new works to partner the Beethoven Sonatas for Piano and Violin, premiering all during 2015. The duo has since given the entire cycle in Bristol, Oxford, Cambridge, Sheffield, Aberdeen and Wells, where they recently recorded all twenty works for SOMM Recordings. The cycle is now the subject of Daniel’s PhD. With Music Discovery Live, Daniel works alongside musicologist and broadcaster Richard Wigmore, presenting insights into masterpieces of the solo piano and chamber music repertoire.
Daniel is Head of Piano in Chamber Music at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. For five years he has directed a summer course for talented young musicians as part of the Wye Valley Chamber Music Festival.