Max’s love for drums and percussion started at the age of 3, watching the Vienna Philharmonic playing at their New Year’s Concert on TV. Coming from a musical family, he has always been surrounded by music. He started having drum kit and orchestral percussion tuition from the age of 9 and joined all the local borough ensembles, including Thames Youth Orchestra where Max’s love for orchestral percussion was fuelled even further. Max then went on to start studying with two of the finest drum kit players in the country; Ralph Salmins and Matt Skelton. At the age of 13, Max started attending NYJO (National Youth Jazz Orchestra), starting in NYJO 2 (now the Academy Big Band) and worked his way up to depping in the main band.
In 2014, Max was given (by audition) the percussion and drum kit deputy chair and in 2017 was given the drum kit chair. With NYJO , Max has performed all over the country, playing at notable venues such as the Barbican, Purcell Rooms at the Southbank and the world famous Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in Soho, as well as several tours to Milan, Germany and Holland.
As well as playing with NYJO, Max has played with many other artists and bands in a range of genres that include Gregory Porter, Laurie Holloway Tim Garland, Syd Lawrence Orchestra, The Swingle Singers, Chuck Findley, Jay Craig Orchestra, Simon Gardner, Matthias Hofs, Clare Teal, Zone One Brass, Sarah Fox. Max has also played drums/percussion in a variety of shows which include West Side Story, Sweeny Todd, In The Heights and Zorro.
In 2014, Max was awarded a place to study a BMus in percussion performance at the prestigious Royal College of Music in London where he studies with the world’s finest musicians and teachers, including Alex Neal (co-principle percussion BBC Symphony Orchestra), Ralph Salmins (Drum kit sessions, Van Morrison, Guy Barker), Andy Smith (Timpanist London Philharmonia), and Anthony Kerr (Jazz Vibraphone for BBC Big Band, Georgie Fame). Whilst at the RCM, Max has performed with their Symphony, Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestras as well as being one of the regular drummers for their Big Band. Max was also was awarded the Ackroyd Trust Bursary to help fund his studies.
The Drums Chair is supported by Tim Smart, who is also a member of the Chairman’s Circle.