His conducting debut occurred at a moment’s notice when a conductor was suddenly indisposed, leading to studies at Tanglewood and with Leon Barzin in Paris. David was Barzin’s last student, studying intensively with him over 5 years. Through this experience he has a direct link to the great conductors of the early twentieth century, notably both Toscanini and Furtwängler: a unique training for a conductor of his generation.
Two other legendary mentors were subsequently central to his development as a musician: the conductor Sir Charles Mackerras and the sitar maestro and composer Pandit Ravi Shankar. David’s music- making contains a unique blend of these very potent influences. He is currently at the forefront of the development of a new “Indo-Classic” musical genre which aims to tap into the common roots of both traditions. This quest has included concerts, recordings and broadcasts with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Sinfonia ViVA, Britten Sinfonia and the London Sinfonietta.
David is a popular international guest conductor. In South Africa he undertook a long series of engagements with the South African orchestras, from Beethoven Symphonies with the Johannesburg and Kwa-Zulu Natal Philharmonic orchestras to outreach work with township choirs. He performed Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Seoul National Symphony Orchestra in a concert for World Peace broadcast on both Korean and Japanese television and conducted Samaagam, a collaboration with the legendary Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra on a pioneering tour of India. This tour also featured symphonies by Mozart and Beethoven, heard in some Indian venues for the first time. His critically acclaimed Royal Festival Hall debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra included Janáček’s Sinfonietta and a groundbreaking performance of Sibelius 2nd Symphony utilising the original manuscript sources.
He recently returned to the Royal Festival Hall, this time with the London Philharmonic Orchestra to conduct the World Premiere of the Symphony by Ravi Shankar alongside minimalist milestones by Adams and Glass. This has recently been released on CD to tremendous critical acclaim. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.