The money we've been awarded by the Trust has created a fantastic array of opportunities for us, enabling us to commission a variety of works and actually offer these composers a fee rather than asking for favours all the time! A concerto, in particular, is the most exciting of these, given the lack of such repertoire for percussion duo, and it is great to know that we will be expanding this repertoire, not just for us, but for future performers as well.O Duo"
O Duo was supported by Borletti-Buiitoni Trust between 2008 and 2013, when this page was last updated. For an up to date biography please visit www.lauratearmanagement.com
Described by The Daily Telegraph as ‘brimming with style and panache’. O Duo has made its BBC Proms debut, won a Special Commissioning Award from the Borletti-Buitoni Trust and been appointed Artistic Directors of the Children’s Classic Concerts series in Scotland. In 2010 O Duo gave the premiere of Stephen McNeff’s ConcertO Duo with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican as part of their 80th birthday concert. They returned to the Proms to give the premiere of Wilful Chants by Stephen Montague, appeared at the Last Night of the Proms in Hyde Park, and gave recitals at Wigmore Hall, Cheltenham and City of London Festivals. Their highly acclaimed series of Children’s Classics Concerts includes performances at the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow and Queen’s Hall Edinburgh with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Orchestra of Scottish Opera and special guests. 2013 has included performances of the world premiere of Fraser Trainer’s Percussion Concerto firstly with Sinfonia ViVA and then with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. In 2014 O Duo will release a new CD. Formed in 2000 at the Royal College of Music, O Duo released their first commercial CD on the Sony BMG label in 2007 to critical acclaim. They have given concerts throughout Europe and further afield and performed concertos with the BBC Philharmonic, London Philharmonic and Philharmonia Orchestras. Outstanding communicators, O Duo have worked at Abbey Road and Sony studios on television and film scores and broadcast on BBC Radio 2 and 3, Classic FM, Channel 4 and BBC Television. The Duo was chosen for representation by YCAT from 2005 to 2011.
Photographs by Gillian McBain
Stephen McNeff ConcertO Duo, commissioned for O Duo by BBT and BBC, premiered at the BBC Symphony Orchestra 80th Birthday concert
"Stephen McNeff’s ConcertO Duo, written for the outrageously talented percussionists O Duo (Oliver Cox and Owen Gunnell) plays to their strengths by exploiting split-second timing and staggering virtuosity on anything that could reasonably be hit with a stick."
Barry Millington London Evening Standard 25.10.10
"It [ConcertO Duo] was written for the O Duo percussion duo, who really are the most astonishing double act, running back and forth between the two huge batteries without missing a beat... the slow movement, where the percussionists draped ribbons of sound over the orchestra’s song, was nicely judged."
Ivan Hewett Daily Telegraph 25.10.10
"Owen Gunnell and Olly Cox brought a tremendous amount of energy and sense of fun to the piece... this was an engaging work that made imaginative use of the instruments and staging, from whistles and untuned percussion recalling a carnival dance, to the more dark, funereal atmosphere created by tubular bells. As composer Stephen McNeff reminds us, 'a concerto is designed to let the soloists show off' and, performing with great flair and precision, O duo certainly did this in the best sense."
Hannah Gill, Bachtrack 24.10.10
- Co-commissioning with BBC Symphony Orchestra of Percussion Concerto by Stephen McNeff
- Video Profile
- Showcase concert at Wiltons Music Hall
- Co-commissioning a chamber concerto by Fraser Trainer with Sinfonia Viva, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Fidelio Charitable Trust
Stephen McNeff ConcertO-Duo
Stephen McNeff:ConcertO Duo excerpt; recorded live at Barbican, London
Excerpt from the World Premiere performance at the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s 80th birthday concert at the Barbican on 22nd October 2010. The work was commissioned for O Duo by Borletti-Buitoni Trust and the BBC.
Oliver Cox percussion
Owen Gunnell percussion
BBC Symphony Orchestra
David Robertson conductor
Courtesy of BBC Radio 3 www.bbc.co.uk/radio3
DETERMINED TO DELIGHTO Duo in concert at Wilton’s Music Hall, plus Stephen McNeff
"Entertaining, enthusiastic, energetic" are words that composer Stephen McNeff repeatedly uses when talking about percussionists Owen Gunnell and Oliver Cox, for whom he has written ConcertO-Duo for Two Percussion, co-commissioned by Borletti-Buitoni Trust and the BBC for performance at the BBC Symphony Orchestra 80th birthday concert at London’s Barbican on 22nd October 2010. Our video profile showcases O Duo in performance at Wilton’s Music Hall, London, plus a workshop with McNeff as they work towards their new concerto. More performance clips from their Wilton’s concert are at www.youtube.com/borlettibuitonitrust