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Ashley Arbuckle


Ashley was born and educated in Perth, graduating in 1964 with a Bachelor of Music from the University of Western Australia.

He became a member of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra soon after and in 1972 was appointed Associate Concertmaster.

March 1974 saw Ashley commence studies in Switzerland and London culminating in him being offered the position of co-leader of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, remaining with them for three years.

During this time he was a founding member of the Australian Sinfonia of London, also giving solo performances with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the London Soloists.

In 1981 Ashley was appointed co-leader of the London Symphony Orchestra. He remained in this position for ten years.

Returning to Perth, Ashley took up the mantle of WASO Concertmaster in late 1990.

Due to a rare neurological condition affecting his coordination, Ashley had no choice but to cease playing in 1998, retiring completely from his position as WASO Concertmaster in 1999. But after five years and 26 specialists, an operation was performed by renowned brain surgeon Dr Charles Teo in 2002, which saw his bowing arm return to normal. In 2006, he was able to play again - the classical music world was thrilled to see him return to the international stage.

These days, Ashley is busy as Artistic Director of The String Co-op, a collection of Perth's finest jazz and classical string musicians, as well as Artistic Director of the Western Arts Orchestra, a Chamber Ensemble of 16 players - available for hire at your private or corporate event. He is also Concertmaster and Artistic Director of the WA Philharmonic, renowned for specialising in Film-Score Recording over the past 15 years.

Ashley cites the highlight of his career as meeting Lady Di in 1995 after leading the London Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican, and playing with the World Orchestra for Peace in Geneva. His musical influences include Stefan Grappelli and Leonard Bernstein.

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