Richard Henry

Professorial Staff - Jazz Trombone



Richard Henry headshot


Richard is a Bass Trombone specialist with a rich sound and a style of playing which is prominent when needed or blends seamlessly in any given musical setting. He has over 25 years' experience on the London music scene and beyond, performing on hundreds of sessions in film, theatre, popular, commercial and tv sound tracks in jazz, contemporary and classical forms. Richard is well known for his work in jazz ensembles, be it 1940s big band swing music to contemporary jazz orchestras and anything in between or outside. From the 90s onwards, he spent many years touring and recording with the bands of two prominent and influential contemporary American jazz artists, Carla Bley and George Russell.

More recently Richard was guest bass trombonist in Julian Joseph OBE's contemporary, multicultural reworking of Tristan and Isolde featuring the singers Carleen Anderson, Ken Papenfus, Christine Tobin and Cleveland Watkiss and the BBC Concert Orchestra & Singers and the Julian Joseph trio, which was recorded live for BBC Radio at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. He is a member of the Chineke! Orchestra, founded by Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE, playing on both the debut album and Chineke!'s release of Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 2 and Sibelius' Symphony No. 2. He is proud to be playing in a project set up by saxophonist Paul Booth, the Bansangu Orchestra, which in August 2018 launched its debut album at our first performance at Ronnie Scott's Jazz club and the Cork Jazz festival. This year Richard was also a member of the Shakespeare's Globe ensemble as a musician in As You Like It and Much Ado About Nothing (Trombone, Sousaphone and Euphonium). He is currently a long standing member of the London Jazz Orchestra. 

Qualifications & Teaching Experience 

Richard is a graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music, and studied at postgraduate level at the National Centre for Orchestral Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London. He has Qualified Teacher Status and was formally a teacher of music at an East London secondary school. He was a brass finalist in the third series of BBC Young Musician. 


Previous performance credits or recordings include:

BBC radio band, an original member of both the Back to Basie big band (9-times winner of best British big band) and the Glenn Miller UK orchestra, the European Broadcasting Union big band Ljubljana 1997.

Carla Bley big band, George Russell living time orchestra, Hermeto Pascal UK/Brazilian big band (1994, 2004, 2016), Mike Gibbs 80th birthday tour, Kenny Wheeler 75th birthday tour, Django Bates' Delightful Precipice, Bob Brookmeyer/Ed Partyka Jazz orchestra, Loose Tubes (the reunion), Julian Siegal Jazz Orchestra, the Pete Hurt Jazz orchestra and Mark Lockhart's Scratch band.

Joni Mitchell (Both Sides Now), Peter Gabriel (Scratch My Back), Barbra Streisand 1994 Tour Wembley Arena, Dame Shirley Bassey (various), Michael Bublé (Parkinson TV), George Michael – Symphonica tour 2012, Jessye Norman - Duke Ellington's Sacred Music Barbican 1999, Miguel Atwood Ferguson – Suite for Ma Dukes 2016/17.

TV – Jools Holland band – Hootenanny, Chris Evans –Don't forget your toothbrush and TFI Friday (Ch4), The Tube – Durutti Column (Ch 4 with Paula Yates and Jools Holland), Julian Joseph all star big band Proms 1995, Clare Teal big band Proms 2015, Jonathan Creek, Just William, Peoples Century (BBC), Fungus the Bogeyman, playing bass trombone and sousaphone (Sky 1), Tony Ferrino Phenomenon (Ch4).

West End theatre bass trombone/tenor trombone/tuba chair on: My Fair Lady (NT/Drury Lane), The Full Monty (UK premiere Prince of Wales Theatre), Guys 'n Dolls (Piccadilly Theatre), City of Angels (UK premiere Prince of Wales Theatre), From Here to Eternity (Shaftesbury Theatre), Ain't Misbehavin' (Lyric Theatre) and many more.

Royal Shakespeare Company – Lucy Baileys' - Taming of the Shrew 2012, Shakespeare Globe Theatre – The Tempest 2013, Richard II, 2015 (I was Musical Director – NB the music composed by Stephen Warbeck was written solely for 5 trombones!), Much ado about nothing and As you like it 2018.

Shakespeare in Love, Quills, Captain Corelli's Mandolin (Stephen Warbeck), Various James Bond soundtracks, Sleepy Hollow and many more.