Do you remember the artistic director of the 2019 Cheltenham Music Festival? Alison Balsom is her name. She has been in media not only as Sam Mendes' wife but also as a professional female trumpet player. Even though women who play trumpets are seen differently from their male counterparts, she has made some remarkable records. She has been encouraging women who are in her line of career to ignore social constructs and explore new things.

Alison Balsom

Image:, @AlisonBalsom

Alison had an active performance while she was on BBC Radio. She performed most of the main concerto repertoire for orchestra and trumpet (solo). She has been exceptional in her career since she released her debut album with EMI Classics in 2002, which marked the beginning of her journey to stardom. Her story covers a lot to learn about.

Sam Mendes' wife profile summary

  • Full name: Alison Louise Balsom
  • Date of birth: 7th of October, 1978
  • Birthplace: Hitchin, Hertfordshire, England
  • Age: 41 years old
  • Gender: Female
  • Zodiac sign: Libra
  • Eye color: Brown
  • Hair color: Black
  • Height: 4 feet and 10 inches
  • Profession: Musician and educator
  • Instrument: Trumpet
  • Present labels: EMI Classics Hyperion Warner Classics
  • Nationality: British
  • Net worth: $33 Million
  • Weight: 44.9 kg
  • Parents: Bill (father)
  • Spouse: Sam Mendes

Balsom's background information

Alison Louise Balsom is a professional solo classical trumpet player, producer, arranger, and music teacher. She was born in Hitchin, Hertfordshire, England. Alison Balsom family is characterized by love and affection. She had a lively childhood in the town of Royston with her parents. Bill, her father, was a builder, while her mother helped children get into foster families. Since she picked a career in the entertainment industry, she has received numerous awards to her name.

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The trumpet player is passionate about ensuring that everyone understands the importance of being educated on music. Looking at Alison Balsom images, the passion with which she plays is contagious. From her wealth of experience, the trumpeter teaches masterclasses in different places, including the Curtis Institute and Juilliard School. At a point, she gave a TED talk on Music as a Healer, and another lecture on Women in the Arts at Somerville College, Oxford University.

Alison Balsom age

Image:, @AlisonBalsom

Between 2018 and 2019, she served as Artistic Director of the Cheltenham Music Festival. During this time, she curated a season which saw the likes of Academy of Ancient Music, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the London Symphony Orchestra coming together. This was alongside soloists Danielle de Niese, Jess Gillam, and Nicola Benedetti.


Alison Balsom education on how to play trumpet started when she was attending Tannery Drift First School in Royston, Hertfordshire. From there, she proceeded to Greneway Middle School and Meridian School. She played in the Royston Town Band at this period. Her A-level examination was taken while at Hills Road Sixth Form College in Cambridge.

The award winner also learned at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and the Paris Conservatoire. She has honorary doctorates from the University of Leicester and Anglia Ruskin University. She is also an Honorary Fellow and Visiting Professor at the Guildhall.

Career and discography

The trumpeter has collaborated with various world's leading chamber ensembles like Il Pomo d'Oro, the Academy of Ancient Music, and a handpicked group of leading Baroque soloists known as The Balsom Ensemble. She serves as an ambassador for the BBC's Ten Pieces project.

As a visionary and a woman with a great passion for music, she was the protagonist and creative producer of Gabriel at Shakespeare's Globe in London in 2013. Among her repertoire are Qigang-Chen's Joie Eternelle, Bramwell Tovey's Songs of the Paradise Saloon, and Thea Musgrave's Trumpet Concerto. During the BBC Proms, she gave the World Premiere of Guy Barker's Lanterne of Light.

In 2002, she began her recording career, which was when she released Music For Trumpet and Organ on EMI Classics. Some of the works featured include Sweelinck, Bach, Messiaen, and Purcell. Apart from that, the following are the works which the award-winning trumpeter is proud to have released:

  • Royal Fireworks (Warner Classics, 2019)
  • Jubilo (Warner Classics, 2016)
  • Légende (Warner Classics, 2016)
  • Paris (Warner Classics, 2014)
  • Sound the Trumpet-Gabriel Edition (Warner Classics, 2013)
  • Sound the Trumpet: Royal Music of Purcell and Handel (EMI Classics, 2012)
  • Seraph: Trumpet Concertos (EMI Classics, 2012)
  • Alison Balsom (EMI Classics, 2012)
  • Haydn & Hummel: Trumpet Concertos (BBC Music Magazine, 2010)
  • Italian Concertos (EMI Classics, 2010)
  • Haydn and Hummel Trumpet Concertos (EMI Classics, 2008)
  • Caprice (EMI Classics, 2006)
  • Bach works for Trumpet (EMI Classics, 2005)
  • The fam'd Italian masters /Steele-Perkins (Hyperion, 2003)

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As an accomplished trumpet player, she was the winner at the Classical BRIT Awards for the Young British Classical Performer. She has also received the award on two other occasions. Other awards include the Nordoff Robbins O2 Silver Clef Award, Gramophone Artist of the Year, and three Echo Klassik Awards.

alison balsom children

Image:, @AlisonBalsom

Her skills have granted her the opportunity of playing with some world-renowned conductors, including Sir Roger Norrington, Pierre Boulez, and Lorin Maazel. Apart from that, her presence has been felt in orchestras like the Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco and Toronto Symphony Orchestras, l'Orchestre de Paris, and London Philharmonic orchestras.

Who is Alison Balsom husband?

The award-winning trumpeter is married to Samuel Alexander Mendes. Sam is an English award-winning director, screenwriter, and producer. He was born on the 1st of August, 1965, and had his university education at Cambridge, England. He is famous as the director of Academy Award and Golden Globe award-winning American Beauty (1999). Aside from directing, he loves cricket, which he taught after finishing school at Summer Fields School, Oxford, UK.

Sam was among the recipients of the C.B.E. (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the 2000 Queen's Birthday Honors List for his services to drama. Also, Alison Balsom Golden Globes 2020 appearance was for her husband, Sam Mendes, who won the award for the best director. Mendes had a marital union with Kate Winslet in the West Indies in 2003, and the union gave birth to Joe Alfie Winslet Mendes on the 22nd of December, 2003.

Before meeting Sam, the trumpet player was in a long term relationship with conductor Edward Gardner. The union produced Charlie before the two of them separated in 2011.

How old is Alison Balsom?

Alison Balsom age is 41 years. She was born on the 7th of October, 1978.

How much is Alison Balsom worth?

According to online sources, Alison Balsom net worth is estimated at $33 Million.

Alison Balsom height

Alison is of an average height of 4 feet and 10 inches.

Alison Balsom distinguished herself as first-class honors graduate from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Her name is associated with perseverance and success. The different awards which she has received since she started her music career prove that. Without mincing words, her impact on the music entertainment industry cannot be forgotten so easily.

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