Matt Bruce (ON 1987) Australian Brandenburg Orchestra’s Resident Concert Master
Congratulations to Matthew (Matt) Bruce, violinist, and resident concert master for the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, who are celebrating their 25th anniversary in 2015. Even with his hectic schedule, Matt has generously offered to lend his expertise to the Newington Symphonic Strings orchestra.
Matthew has been the Resident Concertmaster of the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra since 2012. He joined the orchestra in 1992, and has toured with the Brandenburg both nationally and internationally. He has appeared as soloist on numerous occasions, and is featured on many of the Brandenburg’s recordings, including the ARIA award winning ‘Baroque Tapas’.
Matthew performed regularly for a number of years with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra and has also performed with a number of contemporary artists including Jenny Morris, Daryl Braithwaite, and James Raine. He has been concertmaster for various groups including Les Alises, Orchestra of the Antipodes, and most recently with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra.
Matthew started playing violin at the age of four with Suzuki exponent Hiroko Primrose. He was awarded a full music scholarship to Newington College in 1981, where he led the orchestra and gave solo performances on numerous occasions. He also appeared as the ‘fiddler’ in the Newington production of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’.
From 1991 Matthew studied under Janet Davies at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where he rediscovered a passion for early music and period playing in baroque ensemble studies with Paul Dyer in 1992. He was a winner of the Sydney Conservatorium concerto competition in 1993, graduating with top marks in his senior recital the following year.
A Big Brother Travelling Scholarship in 1995 allowed Matthew to travel to London where he studied with David Tocano and Lydia Mordkovich.
Between 1995 and 1999 he performed and competed as a member of the East Sydney Ensemble at the Townsville International chamber music, Canberra Chamber Music Festival, ANAM, Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, and Academie de Musique in Lausanne, Switzerland. He also toured chamber music programs with the group to Fribourg, Paris, across New Zealand and the Pacific, and locally throughout NSW.
In 2000 Matthew was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to pursue further studies in period performance practices on baroque violin in Europe under the tuition of Enrico Gatti and Ryo Terakado, and also toured internationally with the Australian Brandenburg orchestra in the same year.
Matthew’s musical interests encompass a wide range of styles and repertoire, from historically informed baroque playing, to chamber and solo works from baroque to contemporary periods, to jazz, free improvisation, and contemporary pop. He has performed and recorded with ensembles and groups including Sydney Philharmonia, The Song Company, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Pinchgut Opera, and with contemporary groups J’Adobe, Stories, Albert Ayler Project, Coda, and Four-play, as well as for ABC Classic FM, and various solo concerto performances with orchestra, including works from Vivaldi to Prokofiev.
Matthew is a committed educator, and currently teaches and takes masterclasses at the Australian Institute of Music.