JAMES GALWAY Biography - Musicians


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Name: James Galway                                                                   
Born: 8 December 1939 Belfast, Northern Ireland                                       
Sir James Galway (born December 8, 1939) is a Northern Ireland born virtuoso         
flautist from Belfast, He is often called "The Man With the Golden Flute".           
Following in the footsteps of Jean-Pierre Rampal, he became one of the first         
flute players to establish an international career as a soloist.                     
James Galway studied at the Royal College of Music under John Francis and then       
at the Guildhall School of Music under Geoffrey Gilbert. He then studied at the       
Paris Conservatoire under Gaston Crunelle and Jean-Pierre Rampal and also             
privately with Marcel Moyse.                                                         
After his education time he spent 15 years as an orchestral player. Galway           
played with the Philharmonia Orchestra as it rose to prominence in the 1950s.         
He then played with Sadler's Wells Opera, Covent Garden Opera, the London             
Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He auditioned for           
the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Herbert von Karajan, and was principal       
flute of that orchestra from 1969 to 1975. To Karajan's surprise and dismay,         
after a period of some disagreement, "Jimmy" Galway decided that he would leave       
to pursue a solo career, which he succeeded in doing admirably.                       
In addition to his performances of the standard classical repertoire, he             
features contemporary music in his programs, including new flute works               
commissioned by and for him by composers including David Amram, William Bolcom,       
John Corigliano, Dave Heath, and Lowell Liebermann. The album "In Ireland" by "James 
Galway and the Chieftains" reached number 32 in the UK album charts in 1987.         
He still performs regularly and is one of the world's most well-known flute           
He is Principal Guest Conductor of the London Mozart Players, based at the           
Fairfield Halls, Croydon, South London.                                               
Most recently, Sir James has performed for the Academy Award-winning ensemble         
recording the soundtracks of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings film trilogy,         
composed by Howard Shore.                                                             
He plays several Muramatsu flutes and a golden flute that was handcrafted for         
him by the Nagahara team.