Nicholas Carpenter started his musical education as a chorister at St. Paul’s Cathedral and gave his first solo performance on the clarinet at the age of ten. After winning the inaugural National Chamber Music Competition for Schools with his playing of the Mozart Clarinet Quintet he spent four years at the Royal College of Music, London, where he studied with Dame Thea King and John McCaw and enjoyed a prize-winning studentship.
Immediately upon leaving, Nicholas was asked to appear as Guest Principal Clarinet with the Bournemouth Sinfonietta, and six months later was asked to take up that position permanently, a post that he held for the next ten years.
During this time he frequently appeared as a Soloist and Director and in this role, broadcast many times in U.K. and abroad. In 1996 he was invited to join the London Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he holds to the present day. He also plays regularly as Guest Principal Clarinet with most major symphony orchestras in England.
Nicholas also enjoys a busy career as a recital and chamber musician.
In 1992, his first solo recording of British Music for Clarinet and Piano was released to much critical acclaim, and in 1997 his recording of the Mozart Clarinet Quintet with the Brindisi Quartet for EMI was released. This latter recording has been accorded two ‘Best Recording’ recommendations, one in the U.S.A. and the other by BBC Radio 3 ‘Building a Library’.
He is much in demand as a teacher and is regularly invited to give master-classes throughout the UK as well as coaching the wind section of many Youth Orchestras. In 2008 he joined the staff of Guildhall School of Music and Drama as professor of Clarinet.
Nicholas Carpenter plays YAMAHA YCL-CSGIIIH and YCL-CSGAIIIHL Custom Clarinets.