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Borletti-Buitoni Trust

Having a Fellowship is really exciting. I feel BBT has enabled my horn playing to go to new places. It's not just a question of logistical or financial support with each project but also about their belief in me and what an artist can do. As such it is a wonderful gift; a liberating experience.

Alec Frank-Gemmill"
Horn player Alec Frank-Gemmill is recognised internationally for the exceptional breadth and depth of his music-making. Principal Horn of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, he divides his time between concertos, recitals, chamber music and orchestral playing. A proponent of the historical natural horn as well as of the modern instrument, his repertoire stretches from the baroque era to the latest contemporary compositions.

Alec has appeared as soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, the Düsseldorfer Symphoniker and Sinfonietta Köln. He also regularly performs concertos with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra – their recording of Weber’s Concertino on Linn met with great critical acclaim.

Artist in Residence at the 2013 Lammermuir Festival, Alec made his Wigmore Hall debut that same year. He has gone on to perform as a soloist in numerous festivals including Spitalfields, Ryedale, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and St. Magnus. Alec will return to Wigmore Hall three times 2015/16 - for a solo recital, as part of a trio, and with the period instrument group Ensemble Marsyas.

Having himself studied in Cambridge, London and Berlin, Alec was recently appointed Professor of Horn at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He is the recipient of a Borletti-Buitoni Fellowship 2014 and is a member of the BBC New Generation Artists scheme.

"A phenomenon with a tone of golden purity, wraparound warmth and ecstatic afterglow." Financial Times

"A stunning performance... Alec Frank-Gemmill made the instrument dart, wail and flutter as if those were normal things for a French horn to do." The Herald

"I especially enjoyed Alec Frank-Gemmill's cheeky handling of the runs and decorations in the Horn Concertino." Gramophone

Photographs by Jen Owens, Andy Saunders

  • Showcase at IAMA Conference April 2014, Milton Court, Barbican, London
  • Purchase of concert clothes
  • Participation in Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Junge Elite Bothmer Musik July 2015
  • Two recordings for BIS Records
  • Participation in Wednesdays at Wilton's
    (24 June 2015)


Alec Frank-Gemmill and Eleanor Johnston’s Wednesdays at Wilton’s Blog
BBT 2014 fellowship winner Alec Frank-Gemmill and Eleanor Johnston battle with noises off as they explain their unusual combination of horn and harp and the intricacies of finding the repertoire for this intimate recital in Wilton’s Music Hall’s Cocktail Bar.


BBT award and fellowship winners consider the pros and cons of purpose-built concert halls and other venues
How does a symphony orchestra sound in a car park? Or is it best appreciated in specially-built halls? BBT stirs the ongoing debate surrounding the idea of taking classical music out of the concert hall to imaginative and often unusual venues. Does this help cultivate new audiences? Younger audiences? Or does it compromise the music? Is taking down the barriers opening a pathway to more people enjoying classical music? Is the ultimate aim to get them into a concert hall?

These questions are addressed by a representative sample of Borletti-Buitoni Trust award and fellowship winners as they take their careers not only into new repertoire but new venues. See what ATOS Trio, Erik Bosgraaf, Alec Frank-Gemmill, Bram van Sambeek, Sean Shibe, Mark Simpson, Kate Whitley and others have to say.


Alec Frank-Gemmill plays Saint-Saëns’ Morceau de Concert with Eleanor Johnston at Wednesdays at Wilton’s
BBT 2014 fellowship winner Alec Frank-Gemmill plays Camille Saint-Saëns’ Morceau de Concert Op. 94 for horn and piano as transcribed and played by harpist Eleanor Johnston at the final BBT Wednesdays at Wilton’s on 24 June 2015

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Jo Buckley
telephone +44 (0)7967 205292