David is a musician of international reputation, who has played a significant role in the musical education of young people.
David has inspired the highest standards of musicianship in performance and teaching, the development of major academic and artistic initiatives and has promoted centres of musical excellence throughout the world.
He began his teaching career as a cello professor at the Royal Academy of Music in 1975. David was Head of the String Department from 1997 until 2010 and was conferred as Professor of the University of London in 2002. Many of his former students have achieved national and international recognition as principal players in some of Europe’s finest orchestras, members of internationally renowned string quartets and hold teaching appointments at some of the world’s leading academies and conservatoires.
David was associated with the European Union Youth Orchestra (EUYO) for over thirty years. He was the EUYO’s Director of Studies, with responsibility for the selection and training of the orchestra in preparation for concerts with some of the world’s most eminent conductors. He left this position in December 2013.
He is regularly invited to conduct and give masterclasses throughout Europe and the Far East and has held visiting professorships at the Australian National Academy of Music, the Conservatoria Superior de Musica, Salamanca and the Conservatoria Superior de Music, Madrid. David visits the Shanghai Conservatoire of Music as a visiting professor each year. He is an external examiner and member of the advisory committee of the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, where he was awarded an Honorary Fellowship in 2019.
David had a very distinguished playing career. He was a founding member of the Nash Ensemble before joining the Philharmonia Orchestra in 1964. He then became Co-Principal Cellist of the London Philharmonic and in 1973, was appointed as the Principal Cellist of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra by Rudolf Kempe. In 1985 David was invited to become the Principal Cellist of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden by Bernard Haitink. After five years he left the Opera House to devote more time to conducting and teaching.
David has been a jury member of many prestigious international competitions. He has chaired the International Jeunesses Musicales Cello Competition in Belgrade and the Max Rostal International Violin/Viola Competition in Berlin.
David is a founding director of Eaton Square Concerts, London and in 2013 was appointed Artistic Advisor and Director of Auditions of the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland. In the Queen’s New Year’s Honours, 2020, David was awarded the MBE for Services to Music.