Stuart Thompson with Double Bass
2023, 2022

Stuart Thomson

Double Bass

Principal Double Bass – Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra; Former – Queensland Symphony Orchestra; Sydney Symphony Orchestra; Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra

Australian Hometown(s): Hobart
Education: Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), Manchester (UK)

Born in Edinburgh, Stuart Thomson began playing the double bass at age nine and later joined the Hampshire County Youth Orchestra. It was this experience that inspired him to become a professional musician. He studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester with Duncan McTier and Corin Long, and began working professionally with the Hallé, BBC Philharmonic and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic orchestras while still a student.

Following a year of freelancing with the London Symphony Orchestra and Philharmonia Orchestra, Stuart joined the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra in 1999 and then moved to Australia in 2001 to play with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. The following year he was appointed Associate Principal of The Queensland Orchestra and then in late 2003 took up the post of Principal Double Bass with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra (TSO). He has since been asked to guest principal with many of the Australian orchestras.

In 2005 Stuart made his solo debut with the TSO playing alongside Alex Henery in Bottesini Passione Amorosa for two double basses. Further solo appearances with the TSO include Eduard Tubin Concerto for Double Bass in 2011 and the Australian première of Tan Dun’s Double Bass Concerto, Wolf Totem, in 2015. In January 2017 Stuart appeared again as soloist with the TSO in nine performances of Tan Dun Wolf Totem. The performances took place in Hobart and during the TSO tour of China, where Stuart and the TSO gave the mainland China premiere of this work. 

Stuart has also performed Tan Dun Wolf Totem with the Darwin Symphony Orchestra and the Suzhou and Shenzhen Symphony Orchestras in China. In 2021 he performed Bottesini Gran Duo with TSO concertmaster Emma McGrath.

Stuart enjoys teaching double bass, playing chamber music, drawing as a hobby, and spending time with his cat and 2 Golden Retrievers.

Last updated 2023