The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama is delighted to announce that Robert Plane, Principal Clarinet of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, is its new Head of Woodwind Performance.

Robert, who has been a clarinet tutor at the College for the last twenty years, will start his new position in September.

“It’s an honour to be able to continue and build on the superb work undertaken by my distinguished predecessors and to become such an integral part of the College’s dynamic leadership team,” said Rob.

Rob’s post will focus on nurturing RWCMD’s presence on the international stage in tandem with deepening the College’s relevance to its local communities and its roots within Wales.

“Collaboration and innovation must be at the heart of everything we do,” he said. “Covid-19 has highlighted just how creative, resourceful and adaptable the musicians of the future will need to be. Employability is everything, and I hope to instill a caring, supportive and demanding work ethic in the department. Every young musician that passes through the department should have the confidence to explore musical paths that may not have occurred to them before beginning their studies with us. We will strive for the very highest standards and to fulfil each student’s potential across the whole spectrum of what it means to be a musician. There will be no limits to my ambitions for the department and all those in it.”

During the current Covid-19 lockdown Rob has performed socially-distanced concerts to his street and on social media with his family and professional musician neighbours. The ‘Cardiff Street Orchestra’, which boasts four members of staff at RWCMD, has taken its message of hope through music worldwide, with appearances on Radio 4’s Today programme and the forthcoming BBC’s Ross Kemp: Britain’s Volunteer Army.

RWCMD Director of Music Tim Rhys-Evans said, “As a new member of the RWCMD team myself, I’m really excited about working with Rob on a vision for the College that puts music at the heart of our exciting new five-year strategy. Despite the restrictions of lockdown, I’ve been amazed and energised by the sense of community that our College generates and I know that Rob is going to play a key role in that community. We are thrilled that he can bring his wealth of talent to the role, and I know that his creativity and dynamism will ensure our woodwind department is outward-looking, future-focussed and appealing to students, other teachers, and the industry, both from the UK and across the world.”