Proms honour for award-winning conductor

Jules Buckley. Picture: Hans van der Woerd

Jules Buckley. Picture: Hans van der Woerd

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Grammy Award-winning conductor Jules Buckley is taking part in three concerts during the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall this summer.

The 36-year-old arranger and composer from Aylesbury will be joining the legendary Quincy Jones, saxophonist Kamasi Washington and jazz master Jamie Cullum.

His next performance is on Monday, August 22 when he will join The Metropole Orkest – one of the world’s leading pop and jazz orchestras - to celebrate the music of Quincy Jones.

Jules said: “It will mean a lot to work with Quincy, to be respected enough to be in that position and knowing that he trusts me to put together the show. A huge honour.”

He returns on Tuesday, August 30, when saxophonist Kamasi Washington brings his band to the Proms to perform tracks from his latest album, The Epic. Jules will be joined by string players from the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

His performance with Jamie Cullum was on Thursday, August 11.

Having picked up the trumpet aged 9, Jules displayed rare talents for his age, not just in playing his instrument but in writing and composing.

He said: “I knew when I picked up the trumpet that I would do music, it was like a lightning bolt, a massive emotional connection.”

He eventually headed to London to study at the Guildhall School of Music where he took a new path specialising in composition, leading him to pick up the conductor’s baton professionally.

After graduating in 2004, with his artistic producer friend Chris Wheeler, Jules founded The Heritage Orchestra, a 45-60 piece non-classical orchestra unique in its use of sound, visuals and electronics. Jules and The Heritage Orchestra made their BBC Proms debut in 2010 with Jamie Cullum.

Following on from the success of ‘The Ibiza Prom’ last summer, Jules will rejoin Radio 1’s Pete Tong for an even more ambitious staging of ‘Ibiza Classics’ at the end of the year.

He is also working on arrangements for the Mercury Music Prize winning Benjamin Clementine’s live orchestral debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, at the end of April in Amsterdam.