UK music school is shocked by sudden student death

UK music school is shocked by sudden student death


norman lebrecht

December 02, 2013

The Purcell School has announced the death of a bassoon player, Toby Davies, who joined the school in September and was a popular member of several ensembles. He died in Addenbrooks Hospital, Cambridge, on Friday 22 November. We publish the announcement below. All thoughts and sympathies at this moment should be with Toby’s parents.

toby davies purcell

We are sorry to announce the very sad death of Lower Sixth form bassoonist Toby Davies.

Toby, who joined The Purcell School in September from Reading School, was a member of the National Youth Wind Ensemble, Berkshire Youth Orchestra and the Acer Minor Bassoon Sextet. He studied bassoon with Sarah Burnett, piano with Daniel King-Smith and composition with Simon Speare. Toby was taken ill suddenly last week and sadly died in Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge.

Headmaster David Thomas said: “The whole school is extremely upset at Toby’s sudden death. He was a very popular and talented pupil, who brought a love of life, a love of people and a love of music to the school. In his short time here, he gave a great deal to the life of the school, and he will be much missed.”The school is planning various events to celebrate Toby’s life, more details of which will be published in due course.


  • Very Sad indeed. Addenbrooke’s (my local hospital) is a good hospital, and does not like it when young people die. The school’s idea to clelbrate Toby’s life once the rawness of his parents’ grief have subsided is a good one.

    My condolences are with his family during this difficult time.

  • Lauren says:

    The only positive I can think to take away from this is at least his short life was filled with friends, family, and music. May Toby find bliss wherever he may be.

  • Guy Chapman says:

    The memorial service is today. My son Mike was on the recent German tour with Berkshire Maestros. Incredible to think that only recently there are photos of the two of them clowning around.