Toby Hughes

Toby Hughes

Key Facts

  • Instrument: Double Bass


Born in Bristol, Toby Hughes started playing double bass at the age of nine. He attended the Junior Conservatoire in Birmingham where he became bass section leader of the CBSO Youth Orchestra; he was also a member of the National Children’s Orchestra for three years and was four years with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain where he became Principal Bass. In 2009 at the age of sixteen Toby was invited to study at the combined universities of Lausanne, Fribourg and Sion with Professor Božo Paradžik. In his second year at university, he was awarded the ‘Future Talent’ Coombs Scholarship by the Duchess of Kent and in May 2011 was the winner of the Royal Philharmonic Society’s ‘Julius Isserlis Scholarship’ which enabled him to continue with his studies. In the autumn of 2011 he moved to Berlin, where he studied with Matthew McDonald, principal Bass of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.

In 2012 Toby returned to the UK to continue his studies with Juří Hudec at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester graduating in 2015 before going on to spend a year on the International Artists Diploma course. During his time at the RNCM he was the winner of numerous awards including the 2013 Chandos Orchestra ‘Young Musician of the Year’, the string section of the 2014 Royal Over-Seas League Competition (the first double bassist ever to do so) and in 2016 won the Bromsgrove International Competition.

His recital engagements have included appearances at The Wigmore Hall, St-Martin-in-the-Fields, Edinburgh Festival and at the Queen Elizabeth Hall as part of the ROSL final. Having been awarded support from both the The Tillet Trust and The Musicians’ Company in 2017, Toby will be performing at many leading venues across the U.K.


Musicians’ Company Award: Maisie Lewis Prize 2017

Page Updated: 2017