Mark Almond joins the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as principal horn, having previously worked as associate principal horn of the San Francisco Symphony, co-principal horn of the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and third horn of the Philharmonia Orchestra, London.
A native of Bolton, England, Dr. Almond began his musical education at age 9 while playing tenor horn in local brass bands. He studied medicine at Cambridge and Oxford universities, during which time he made his professional debut at age 19 with the London Symphony Orchestra. He holds a doctorate in virology from Imperial College, London, and worked as a respiratory physician in London teaching hospitals before becoming a full-time horn player.
Almond has appeared as a guest principal with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Royal Philharmonic Orchestras, among others. He is an active chamber musician and has recently performed at the Music@Menlo, Cleveland ChamberFest and Santa Fe Chamber music festivals.
He currently teaches horn at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Roosevelt University’s Chicago College of Performing Arts and is a visiting professor at the Royal Academy of Music, London.