Freelance lutenist & guitarist, editor, producer and tutor



Richard MacKenzie

Richard MacKenzie is in great demand as a soloist and collaborative artist on early and classical guitars, renaissance and baroque lutes, vihuela and theorbo. He has collaborated with many ensembles, including; The Sixteen, The King's Consort, Ex Cathedra (dir. Jeffrey Skidmore), Charivari Agréable (dir. Kah-Ming Ng), Oxford Baroque (dir. Jeremy Summerly), The Hanover Band, His Majestys Sagbutts & Cornetts, I Fagiolini (dir. Robert Hollingworth), The Royal Opera House, Opera North, The City Waites (dir. Lucie Skeaping), The Marian Consort, The Portrait Choir (choir-in-residence at The National Portrait Gallery), Passamezzo, Fiori Musicali featuring James Bowman, Duo Seraphim (with Joe Bolger), Lyrica, Galliarda, Basiliensis, Mascherata, Chordophony (Europe's only professional lute quartet), Spiritato!, The Amadè Players, Solomon's Knot, Linden Baroque, Cöthen Baroque, New London Orchestra (dir. Ronald Corp), The Madrigirls, Ars Nova, The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Royal Academy Opera & Baroque Orchestra (dir. Jane Glover), The Bristol Baroque Soloists, The Yorkshire Baroque Soloists (dir. Peter Seymour), The Chamber Ensemble of London, Norwich Baroque, The BREMF Renaissance Orchestra, The MUSARC Choir, The Anton Bruckner Choir, Viaggio Musicale (University of Oxford ensemble, dir. Richard MacKenzie),  The Apollo Baroque Consort, La Nuova Musica, The Musical and Amicable Society, Vignette Productions, The Brook Street Band, Nonsuch Dance Company & Musicians, Vespri Segreti, Sounds Baroque, The International Baroque Players, The North Cotswold Chamber Choir (dir. Sarah Tenant-Flowers), The Fieri Consort, Southend Festival Chorus, Il Festino, The London Mandolin Orchestra, The Music Box, Guildford Baroque and Oxford's New Chamber Opera (dir. Michael Burden, mus. dir. Steven Devine). In April 2012 Richard assistant-directed the European Lute Orchestra's appearance at the Teatro Olimpico, Vicenza. Summer 2012 saw Richard working as a musician (medieval lute, cittern, tambourella, field drum) at Shakepeare's Globe for their production of 'Henry V' (feat. Jamie Parker), and Spring 2014 saw him return to Shakespeare's Globe as principal musician for the revival of Lucy Bailey's controversial production of 'Titus Andronicus', whilst Summer 2014 saw him performing for the Globe's new production of 'Julius Caesar'. Richard collaborated with Passion in Practice in Winter 2014, improvising incidental music for the contemporary premier of 'Macbeth' in original pronunciation, and rejoined the Globe in Spring 2015 for 'As You Like It' and 'Nell Gwynn'. 'Nell Gwynn' later transferred to the West End, resulting in 100 performances at The Apollo Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue.

Richard has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3's 'In Tune' and 'Lunchtime Concert' series on multiple occasions, he has hosted the radio show 'Renaissance FM' on Resonance 104.4 FM, he has been broadcast alongside Andrew Marr on BBC Radio 4, and he has appeared on BBC Two's 'London Calling' with Jools Holland. He appears on the soundtrack of the current cinematic release 'Bill' (2015) featuring the cast of BBC television's 'Horrible Histories', in addition to the film soundtracks for 'Draw on Sweet Night' (2015) & 'The Four Warriors' (2015). Richard also made his dramaturgical cinematic and DVD debut upon the release of Shakespeare's Globe's 'Titus Andronicus'.

Music festival appearances include York Early Music Festival (twice), Lufthansa Festival of Baroque Music, Brighton Early Music Festival (BREMF) (twice), Festival van Vlaanderen-Antwerpen (AMUZ), Rheingau Musik Festival, Royal Greenwich International Early Music Festival and Exhibition (four times, including two solo appearances), London Handel Festival, Oxford Early Music Festival (twice), Wilderness Festival, Latitude Festival, Clifton International Festival, Turl Street Arts Festival, Purbeck Arts Week, Conwy Classical Music Festival, Ryedale Festival, Mayfield Festival, Shore to Shore Festival (REEP), JAM on the Marsh, Arundel Festival & Freemantle Music and Arts Festival (two solo appearances).

In 2011 Richard completed a degree in music at The Queen's College, University of Oxford. Whilst studying at the university he was also a keen solo performer, performing seven solo recitals in some of the most diverse concert venues across Oxford (for more details of these solo programmes please click here). Richard studied lute and guitar with the internationally renowned chordophonists Jakob Lindberg and Jacob Heringman, having previously studied  with Hugh Cherry, Wendy Jackson, Martin Eastwell and Martin Shepherd at Chetham's School of Music, wherein the famous institution awarded him three prizes, including those for ‘Early Music’ and for ‘Academic Music’.

Incidentally, Richard studied the recorder with Alan Davis (Chetham's School of Music) and Grace Barton (Brimingham Conservatoire), and has taken part in masterclasses with Pamela Thorby and Piers Adams. Richard is also a keen player of chalumeaux (having recorded the sounds to feature upon the ROLI Seaboard GRAND), and was principal clarinettist for the National Children's Orchestra in his youth, when he also performed as a concerto soloist with the Wirral Youth Orchestra and later as a clarinetist with the National Youth Orchestra.

In 2012 the Lute Society of Great Britain published his first edition, a critical edition and reconstruction of the ensemble works from Giovanni Battista Granata’s Armoniosi Toni… (Bologna, 1684). The work achieved a first-class mark as a submission piece at the University of Oxford, and was informally reviewed as ‘an excellent piece of work – better than some PhD presentations I have read’ by Dr. Monica Hall, an eminent musicologist in the sphere of chordophonic research.

Richard is an experienced recorder, guitar, piano and academic music tutor, tutoring up to A-Level, and also tutoring ABRSM theory grades. He has taught lute seminars and masterclasses involving members of the student community both at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance, Leeds College of Music and the University of Chichester. He was also made a tutor on the NWEMF's summer school at the age of 17. Additionally, Richard has conducting and piano accompanimental experience, once directing a staged performance of Handel's 'The Choice of Hercules', and co-directing the Heanor Community Choir and Full House Orchestra.