With his father Rod being a clarinettist and saxophonist and his mother Jenny being an operatic soprano, there was no escaping music for young Benjamin. He started on piano and dabbled in saxophone, but finally, at the age of 17, came to rest on the drums.

This wasn’t particularly comfortable at first, but something about rhythm made Ben feel at home behind percussion. Ben revels in playing with several ensembles and runs a business teaching percussion out of his home studio in Newcastle.

Ben Barnes - Image credit: Jenny King Photography

Hear Ben Barnes in the 2023 Festival
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Jazz at the Pub: Savouries, Sweets and Swing