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Benjamin Baker

Born in 1990 in New Zealand, Benjamin studied at the Yehudi Menuhin School and the Royal College of Music with Natasha Boyarsky and Felix Andrievsky. He graduated in 2014 with a Masters and was awarded the prestigious Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Rose Bowl.

During his studies Benjamin won numerous prizes and awards including 1st Prize and the Audience Prize in the 2013 Windsor Festival International String Competition, the Development Prize from the Michael Hill Violin Competition, 1st Prize in the string section of the 2012 Royal Over-Seas League Competition and 2nd Prize at the 2011 Postacchini International Violin Competition in Italy.

Over the last year Benjamin has made his debut with the Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Nicholas Collon, performed the Britten and Sibelius Concertos with the Haydn Chamber Orchestra and Brahms Double Concerto with the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra. He gave recitals at Wigmore Hall, the Lichfield, Newbury and Northern Chords Festivals; recorded for Champs Hill Records; and appeared as soloist with the Royal New Zealand Ballet Company.

Future engagements include recitals at Wigmore Hall, The Sage Gateshead, St. John's Smith Square, Blackheath Concert Halls, the King's Lynn & Buxton Festivals, and the Pedrera Hall in Barcelona. He performs Messiean's Quartet for the End of Time at the Cheltenham Festival, Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No.1 with Fulham Symphony Orchestra, and returns as soloist with the Haydn Chamber Orchestra and Cardiff Philharmonic performing concertos by Sibelius and Tchaikovsky.

As a soloist Benjamin has appeared with the Orchestra Wellington, London Mozart Players, Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, Joven Orquesta de Salamanca, Orpheus Sinfonia, Bath Philharmonia, the Romanian State Radio Orchestra and New English Concert Orchestra at major venues including the Royal Albert Hall, the Bath and Gstaad Festivals. He has given recitals throughout the UK including Wigmore Hall and Royal Festival Hall, and toured Sweden, Denmark, France, Singapore and New Zealand as a member of the Trio Boyarsky.

In 2005 Benjamin's first solo CD Arcadian Strings won the Classic FM Next Big Thing Competition. His second CD Live at Menuhin Hall was released in 2010.

Hugely popular in New Zealand Benjamin returns whenever he is able, to give concerts and appear on radio and television. He moved to the UK in 1998 with his family to study at the Yehudi Menuhin School, on the recommendation of Nigel Kennedy. He is very grateful to be awarded Honorary Membership of the Rotary Club of Port Nicholson for his commitment to children's charities.