We are an exciting, new chamber ensemble based in London, UK. We believe in bringing a wide variety of chamber music to new audiences using exciting new cross-art collaborations to offer immersive concert experiences.

Ensemble Perpetuo is a dynamic and versatile collective of musicians who perform a wide variety of traditional and contemporary chamber music. At the heart of the ensemble, is a desire to engage with audiences and offer an immersive concert experience that shows through connective programming how chamber music can be experienced in innovative ways.Ensemble Perpetuo is building numerous partnerships with composers, theatres, dance companies, chefs, artists, photographers, film makers, and digital studios, as it seeks new pathways in which to experiment with and augment the concert experience. Perpetuo has also embarked on a number of exciting mini-residences throughout the UK; taking music to new venues and offering a number of different kinds of concert experience. These include concerts in schools, theatres, museums, cafes, found spaces, and other unexpected venues.

Social responsibility and outreach projects are an integral aspect of the work Ensemble Perpetuo undertakes within the community. With each concert, Perpetuo engages in a rich variety of local community performances, workshops and activities. In particular, the musicians’ commitment to bringing live music into schools and working closely with areas of music therapy for Alzheimer’s patients are a core part of our work before and after every performance.

Ensemble Perpetuo is made up of active soloists and orchestral musicians who can be found performing in numerous orchestras and prestigious venues throughout the UK.


Ensemble Perpetuo was formed in 2013 by the English oboist, James Turnbull.

James Turnbull is an accomplished oboist highly sought after for solo and chamber music concerts. Gramophone Magazine described his first recital disc, Fierce Tears, as “a notable debut” and Classical Music Magazine selected it as their Editor’s Choice Recording. As a featured artist of the Concert Promoters Network and the Countess of Munster Recital Scheme, James has performed frequently throughout the UK and Europe. He has appeared as a soloist in live radio broadcasts and at festivals including the Oxford Chamber Music Festival, Swaledale, King’s Lynn and Cambridge Summer Music. In 2010, he performed his debut recital at the Wigmore Hall as a Maisie Lewis award winner from the Worshipful Company of Musicians.

James was seven when he began his oboe studies, learning with Irene Pragnell, Melanie Ragge, Celia Nicklin, Tess Miller and Chris Cowie. After gaining a First Class degree in music from Christ Church, Oxford University, James continued his oboe studies at the Royal Academy of Music and under Nicholas Daniel at Trossingen Musikhochschule in Germany, where he was awarded First Class for both his Artist and Soloist Diplomas.

James is deeply committed to expanding the oboe repertoire. Composers including Patrick Hawes, Thomas Hewitt Jones and Norbert Froehlich have written for him. He has also worked closely with Michael Berkeley, John Casken, John Woolrich, Thea Musgrave and Tansy Davies on their compositions for oboe. James has a keen interest in researching lost repertoire and bringing to new audiences works which have been rarely performed.

Aside from his performing interests, James is dedicated to broadening the appeal of the oboe and encouraging young people to learn the instrument. To this end, he has launched a project called ‘The Young Person’s Guide to the Oboe’ with an accompanying website LearnToPlayTheOboe.com. James is frequently invited to give masterclasses, workshops, and lectures about the oboe.

James plays a Lorée Royal Oboe and Cor Anglais. For more information about James and his playing, visit www.james-turnbull.com.


Here are a selection of the projects we've been working on....


Find out more about what we are up to and what projects we have in production!

Review of Orpheus show


Following Ensemble Perpetuo's participation in Orpheus and Eurydice curated by Tom de Freston with Max Barton and Kiran Millwood Hargrave, we are pleased to say a review has come in for the event. See below for more information:

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2015 – already the most exciting year


It has been a while since we've posted anything to this blog page but Perpetuo have already been very busy in 2015. Last Saturday, three of our musicians took part in an special event featuring the paintings of Tom de Freston, poems by Kiran Millwood Hargrave and songs by Max Barton.

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Debut recording coming soon!

Little Missenden Calm Recording

We've just finished recording John Tavener's Little Missenden Calm and Judith Weir's Mountain Airs for Champs Hill Records (www.champshillrecords.co.uk). This recording is due to be released in Spring 2015. We'll keep you posted with more information but in the meantime below are some photos from the sessions! (photos by

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Find out more about our learning and participation initiatives.

At the heart of Ensemble Perpetuo, is a firm belief that we should bring live music to as many people as possible. We believe that our music should not just belong in concert halls but in a wide variety of venues that would normally not host concerts.

When constructing our concert programmes, we are always devising learning and participation projects that bring the music we play into local schools and communities.

We believe that with our music, we can stimulate and empower people of all ages and backgrounds. No matter how much experience our workshop participants have had with music, we always aim to create engaging schemes of work with clear learning outcomes that enable all participants to leave having engaged with a wide variety of musical genres and styles.

All members of Ensemble Perpetuo have been CRB checked and have extensive experience of teaching and workshop leading. If you are interested in having a workshops by Ensemble Perpetuo in your school or organisation, please telephone us on 020 8123 1675 or email us from our contact page.


Get in touch with Ensemble Perpetuo