B i o g r a p h y
Born in Galicia, Spain, Jose Bernardez (BMus, PGDip, MA) discovered his passion for the saxophone at a young age. He began his musical journey at the Galician High School of Music (EAEM) and later honed his skills at the "Conservatorio Superior de Musica de Vigo." These early years saw him combining his studies with regional performances alongside the "Banda de Música Cultural da Estrada," the local wind band from his hometown.
In his early twenties, Jose embarked on a new chapter, moving to Madrid to continue his saxophone studies with the renowned master, Andres Gomis. He pursued his education at the "Conservatorio Profesional de Musica Angel Arias Macein" and the "Conservatori Superior de Musica de les Illes Balears." Here, he gained valuable experience touring with the Saxophone Ensemble and supporting artistic initiatives of the International Saxophone Studio, a notable institution in international saxophone education.
A significant turning point in Jose's career came when he joined the "Five O´clock Big Band." This opportunity led him to perform weekly at the Jazz Voyeur Club alongside legendary saxophonist Malcolm "Molly" Duncan, known for his association with Dire Straits and Eric Clapton. This marked Jose's initial venture into the world of Jazz saxophone music.
In his mid-twenties, Jose co-founded the "Vortex Temporum Ensemble," a saxophone quartet specializing in contemporary and modern music. With this ensemble, he garnered multiple Music Awards and recognitions, including the "Hazen Intercentros Music Award" (Honour Mention), the "Art Jove Chamber Music Award," and the prestigious "Montserrat Alavedra International Music Performance Award." These accolades paved the way for an opportunity to work and study saxophone with Dave O´Higgins at LCCM - London College of Creative Media - Music College. This phase allowed him to explore music electronics and genres like saxophone funk, blues, Indie Rock, and Soul music.
In 2007, Jose achieved a significant milestone when he gained admission to the renowned Royal Academy of Music in London. There, he pursued a Master's Degree in Arts and Saxophone Performance, graduating with honors in 2010. His time at the academy opened doors to perform with eminent artists such as Sir Elton John and collaborate with symphonic orchestras and chamber music groups like the LPO, London Contemporary Orchestra, Royal Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra, Azalea Ensemble, Manson Ensemble, and London Sinfonietta, among others. He also had the privilege to work alongside distinguished conductors, including Sir Colin Davis, Neeme Järvi, Paavo Järvi, Sir Simon Rattle, Yan Pascal Tortellier, and Susanna Mälkki. Additionally, Jose participated in renowned international music festivals such as the "Musica Riva Festival" in Italy and the "Geneva Music Festival" in Switzerland.
Throughout his career, Jose has been fortunate to receive guidance and support from prominent saxophone masters, including Claude Delangle (Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris), Andres Gomis Mora (Alfonso X el Sabio University - UAX - Madrid), Marie Bernadette Charrier (Selmer artist and Honorary Member of the French Association of Saxophonists), Richard Addison (Royal Academy of Music London), Dave O´Higgins (London College of Creative Media), and Alan Barnes.
Critics have praised Jose Bernardez as a performer of great depth, virtuosity, and technical brilliance. His musical journey has taken him to stages across the United Kingdom, France, Portugal, Italy, Spain, and Switzerland, where he has captivated audiences both as a soloist and within quartets, ensembles, big bands, and orchestral settings.
Today, Jose shares his passion by teaching saxophone in London, where he operates his Saxophone Tuition Studio in central London and instructs aspiring musicians in various London Music Schools.