Trevor Wye studied the flute privately both with Geoffrey Gilbert and the celebrated Marcel Moyse. He was a freelance orchestral and chamber music player on the London scene for many years and has made several solo recordings. He was formerly both a Professor at the Guildhall School of Music, London and for 21 years at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.
Trevor Wye is the author of the famous Practice Books for the Flute, which have received world wide acclaim and have been translated into eleven other languages and each have sold over one million copies. His highly praised musical biography of Marcel Moyse, An Extraordinary Man was published in English and five other languages. For the past 30 years he has been working on an encyclopaedia of the flute, now online: www.fluteark.com. In 2017, his new book, Flute Secrets was published and within the first year, a second edition was printed.
During the year, he taught at his Flute Studio in Kent, a unique residential course for postgraduate students, and for many years travelled throughout the world giving concerts including the Carnival Show, including the Carnival of Venice for 60 flutes and piano. He has given master classes with annual appearances in the USA, Canada, Europe, Taiwan and Japan and serving on juries for international competitions though more recently, he has retired from doing this. In 1990 he was made an honorary Fellow of the Royal Northern College of Music by the Duchess of Kent. He was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011 by the National Flute Association of the USA.
Other activities: He taught the flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and conducted wind ensembles and the Canterbury Youth Orchestra at the Kent Music School . He taught at Canterbury Cathedral Choir School from 1962. In 1969, he was invited by Geoffrey Gilbert to teach both in Royal College of Music, Manchester and at the Guildhall School of Music in London. After teaching individual lessons in Manchester for a year, he established a weekly master class method of teaching, at that time unknown outside of France. He also conducted the RNCM Wind Band and taught chamber music in Manchester as well as the flute.
In 1969 he founded and was Director of International Summer School, inviting Marcel Moyse to teach in Canterbury each summer for two years. Thereafter, William Bennett, James Galway and later Geoffrey Gilbert, Peter-Lukas Graf, Stephen Preston and himself, with five assistant teachers continued to teach for three weeks at the biggest flute residential masterclasses in the world. This continued for a further16 years in St Augustine’s College, King’s School, Canterbury, and in St Lawrence’s College, Ramsgate, attracting 120+ flute players each year. Later, bassoon, oboe, clarinet, strings and brass Summer Schools were added with international soloists and teachers with numerous recitals in Canterbury Cathedral, King’s School and at Ramsgate.
During the 1970’s he founded the Kent Wind Society for amateur wind players of all ages which had a regular winter season of recitals with famous soloists and performances by members. Works were commissioned from Gordon Jacob and Alan Ridout amongst others. Amongst the highlights were performances of Berlioz’ Grande Symphony Funebre et Triomphale with around 500 players and a chorus, conducted by Sir Colin Davis, and Handel’s Fireworks Music conducted by Sir David Wilcocks, both in Canterbury Cathedral. Also we performed Tallis’ 40 part motet, Spem in Alium, arranged for flutes and bassoons and performed by 125 flutists and 35 bassoonists.
In the early 1970’s he bought and played on a Bb Radcliff System flute. He asked Albert Cooper to construct a new scale and commissioned Altus Flutes to make a Boehm System Bb flute, and later, a flute damour in A. He has recorded on CD all three flutes at least twice and is responsible for re-introducing the flute damour in modern times.
At one of the many NFA Flute Conventions where he performed as a soloist, after one appearance on the flute damour, he ended the concert by playing a solo on the mandolin.
In 1983, he founded the British Flute Society and helped to organise regular Flute Days until full weekend Conventions were established. Together with Julie Wright, he was Convention Director for five BFS Flute Conventions at the RNCM in Manchester.
In between these activities, in the 1970’s and 80’s, he re-tuned many Louis Lot, Bonneville, and Lebret flutes to Cooper’s Scale, becoming interested in flute making, and making a number of headjoints. He then moved on to making four harpsichords, the last one a two-manual copy of a Taskin of 1780. He also worked part time for several years for the Social Services in Ashford, Kent, helping teenage boys to ‘go straight’ after they had been convicted of crime.
In 1985, together with Sarah Bull and Martin Hoffman, they began an online flute encyclopaedia called The Fluteark:- www.fluteark.com which is still being updated.
In 1990, after leaving Manchester, he founded The Flute Studio at his house in Hastingleigh, Kent, attracting 6 or more students each year with a total of 173 attendees. It closed in March 2020.