Le Basson Savary

A period instrument recital of early Romantic sonatas for bassoon and piano

September 4th, Sunday – Wyselaskie Auditorium


François-René Gebauer (1773-1845)
Sonata No. 3 in d minor for bassoon and basso continuo
Rondo: Allegretto

Anton Liste (1772-1832)
Grande Sonate pour le Piano Forte avec Accompagnement du Basson ou Violoncelle obligé
Allegro con brio
Adagio – Grave (senza misura) – Adagio
Allegro molto vivace


Australian bassoonist Lyndon Watts’s playing has been described as possessing “an ideal balance between utmost precision and wild spontaneity” (Heinz Holliger). Lyndon became principal bassoonist of the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra at the age of 22, working closely with chief conductors Valery Gergiev, Lorin Maazel, Christian Thielemann and James Levine, as well as principal guest conductor Zubin Mehta, and performing in all the major concert halls of the world. After holding this position for 18 years, in 2016 Lyndon chose to move back to his home country Australia, where he is now based in Melbourne. In July 2018 he accepted the position of lecturer in bassoon at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (MCM), University of Melbourne. Since the beginning of 2020 he has also been Convenor of the MCM Early Music Studio.

Lyndon began learning bassoon when he was twelve. For five years he had lessons with John Cran, former principal bassoonist of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, and won numerous scholarships and prizes in Australia. For the final two years of high school he attended Newington College as a music scholar, after which he toured Europe as principal bassoonist of the Australian Youth Orchestra and then remained in Germany to study with Professor Eberhard Marschall in Munich. In 2002 he became the first Australian woodwind player to ever win a prize in the prestigious ARD International Music Competition.

After completing his Master of Music majoring in bassoon in 2000, Lyndon Watts began learning historical bassoon with leading Italian specialist Alberto Grazzi. He acquired and refined his skills on all period bassoons including bass dulcian, Baroque bassoon, German and French classical bassoons, and several forms of early to late Romantic bassoons. Lyndon has worked together with many leading European period instrument specialists including Frans Brüggen, Thomas Hengelbrock, Andrew Manze, Reinhard Goebel (Musica Antiqua Cologne), Dmitry Sinkovsky, Shunske Sato, Edoardo Torbianelli (Scuola Cantorum, Basel), Lars Ulrik Mortensen (Concerto Copenhagen), Dorothee Oberlinger, L’Orfeo Barockorchester, Die Freitagsakademie, Dresden Festival Orchestra, Ensemble Zefiro, Ensemble Philidor, Neue Dusseldorfer Hofmusik, and others. Until 2016 Lyndon also taught historical bassoon at the Munich University of Music and Performing Arts.

In 2012 he obtained a grant in collaboration with musicologist Dr Sebastian Werr and Swiss instrument maker Walter Bassetto from the Swiss National Science Foundation to fund a research program through the Berne University of the Arts involving the first ever reconstruction of a classical bassoon after the Parisian maker Jean-Nicolas Savary jeune, known as the “Stradivari of the bassoon”. A CD with world première recordings of compositions for the Savary bassoon was released in 2014, and a book containing contributions from leading international experts in the field of reconstructing historical woodwind instruments was published in 2017.

Lyndon is also an active supporter of contemporary composers and has given many first performances of solo and chamber music works in collaboration with composers from Munich and Melbourne.

Chad Kelly enjoys a rich and diverse career as a keyboard specialist and director, spanning genres from historically-informed performance and chamber music, to opera and musical theatre. Increasingly in demand in the world of opera and theatre, he is has held posts at the Bayerische Staatsoper, the English National Opera and the Royal Academy of Music. He was a Musical Director for the Olivier Award-nominated West End production of Farinelli and the King with Mark Rylance and Iestyn Davies, as well as the Off West End award-winning production of The Blank Canvas, for King’s Head Opera. He has also been a musical director at The Globe’s Sam Wanamaker Theatre, The Duke of York’s Theatre, Leicester’s Curve, Göttingen Handel Festival, the London Handel Festival, Vienna’s Resonanzen Festival, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London.

Equally adept in the world of contemporary music, recent highlights include working on the world- premiere of Thomas Adés’ opera The Exterminating Angel at the Salzburg Festival, and the world- premiere of Hans Abrahamsen’s The Snow Queen at the Bayerische Staatsoper, as well as workshopping a number of new operas commissioned by the Royal Opera House. Chad’s own arrangements and compositions have been commissioned by performers such as Alison Balsom and Rachel Podger, groups such as the Academy of Ancient Music and the Bavarian State Orchestra, and recorded by Sony.

Chad is fast building a reputation as a formidable continuo player and as a director in the world of historically-informed performance. He has toured as a duo partner with performers such as Rachel Podger and Alison Balsom and built close working relationships with conductors such as Trevor Pinnock, Ivor Bolton and John Eliot Gardiner. He acts as principal continuo player for the groups Solomon’s Knot and Opera Settecento and guest directs groups such as the Academy of Ancient Music. Before leaving Chetham’s School of Music, Chad became a Licentiate of the Royal Schools of Music and a Fellow of the Royal College of organists. He went on to study music at Girton College, Cambridge, where he was Organ Scholar. He graduated with Double First Class Honours as well as achieving the highest mark ever in the University’s history in Practical Musicianship. From 2013-2017, Chad held the post of Lector in Music at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he was academic supervisor to the undergraduate students. Chad continued postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music, London, where he was awarded the coveted DipRAM. In 2017 he was elected as an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in recognition of his significant contribution to the music profession.