Kyle Horch studied in Chicago at Northwestern University, where he learned with Frederick Hemke. He was awarded a BP North America Scholarship in 1986 to pursue postgraduate study at the GSMD in London, where he learned with Stephen Trier.
As a student and young professional musician, he won prizes in numerous competitions in Britain, Europe, and the USA. Since making his London debut in 1989 on the Park Lane Group series, he has performed as soloist at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room, British and World Saxophone Congresses, and many other venues in Britain and abroad.
He has made several critically acclaimed recordings as a featured artist. ChamberSax (Clarinet Classics, 1999) explores chamber repertoire for saxophone and other instruments and was rewarded with five stars in the BBC Music Magazine. AngloSax (Clarinet Classics, 2003) presents a programme of British and American recital music inspired by folksong, nature, and pastoral imagery. ”This is a stunning album” American Record Guide. Returning to chamber music, Kyle formed his own ensemble to record Flotilla (Big Shed Music, 2009), a project focusing on music for unusual combinations of saxophones and keyboards, connected by themes of echo and memory: ”This CD sparkles with energy and the playing is terrific”, The Observer. Other recordings include two CDs of music by the composer Ian Stewart on the Music Chamber label – San Gejtanu (2008) and Islas (2010), Timothy Salter’s Chameleon on Usk Recordings (2016), John Carmichael’s Aria and Finale on ABC Classics (2004), Roderick Elms’ Cygnopations and Il Cygnet on the Herald label (2012), and the 2006-7 Grade 8 Saxophone Syllabus for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (2006).
Apart from his own projects, Kyle maintains an active career as a freelance musician across a wide range of orchestral, contemporary, chamber, and light music. He is a founder member of the chamber ensemble Counterpoise, which since its formation in 2008 has commissioned works by Edward Rushton, John Casken, David Matthews, Charlotte Bray, and Jean Hasse, performing at venues such as Kings Place and St George’s Bristol, as well as at the Cheltenham, City of London, Newbury, Buxton, Brighton, Deal, Petworth, and Ulverston Festivals. Their recording, Deadly Pleasures, was released on the Deux-Elles label in 2013.
Orchestral work has included concerts, tours, broadcasts and CD recordings with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Rambert Dance Company, London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra, Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, Garsington Opera, Royal Opera House, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and many others.
He is lead saxophonist with Michael Law’s Piccadilly Dance Orchestra, playing music from the American songbook – Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Rodgers & Hart – mixed with early jazz arrangements by Duke Ellington and Fletcher Henderson, as well as songs by British contemporaries such as Ray Noble and Noel Coward – at concerts, private engagements, a residency at the Savoy Hotel 1997–2003, and on seven recordings. The Orchestra is featured in two Len Goodman’s BBC documentaries which have been broadcast worldwide: Dancing Feet (2012) and Dance Band Days (2013).
Committed to music education in all its forms, Horch has been a saxophone professor at the Royal College of Music in London since 1991. In addition, he is Visiting Saxophone Consultant at Birmingham Conservatoire, and saxophone teacher at Royal Holloway, University of London. He frequently participates in outreach projects in schools, most often for Birmingham Contemporary Music Group. From 2005 to 2016, he taught annually at the Clarinet and Saxophone Summer Course at Hindhead Music Centre in Surrey. Since 2017, he has led the Saxophone Summer Course at MusicFest Aberystwyth. As a writer, he contributed chapters on saxophone technique and teaching to The Cambridge Companion to the Saxophone (Cambridge University Press, 1999).
He has given performances and masterclasses at SAX 15 Festival in Amsterdam (2015), Singapore Saxophone Symposium (2016, 2018) and other saxophone events in Britain, France, Holland, Norway, Ireland, Belgium, Switzerland, Australia, and the USA. In 2010 he was a jury member at the 5th International Competition Adolphe Sax, the most prestigious international competition for saxophonists, held in Dinant, Belgium.
In recognition of his many achievements as a performer and teacher, Horch was appointed as a Vice-President of the Clarinet and Saxophone Society of Great Britain in 2016.