Indisputably one of the leading clarinettists of his generation, Michael Collins displays a dazzling virtuosity and sensitive musicianship which have made him a sought-after soloist with orchestras including the Orchestre philharmonique de Radio France and the Philadelphia, NHK Symphony, Sydney Symphony, Leipzig Gewandhaus, City of Birmingham Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, BBC Symphony, and Philharmonia orchestras. In the process he has formed close alliances with conductors such as Charles Dutoit, Carlo Maria Giulini, Neeme Järvi, Tadaaki Otaka, Sir Simon Rattle, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Giuseppe Sinopoli, and Leonard Slatkin. He is a recent recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist of the Year Award in recognition of the pivotal role he has played in expanding the repertoire of his instrument; commissioning works by some of today’s most highly regarded composers, he has given world and local premieres of John Adams’s Gnarly Buttons, Elliott Carter’s Clarinet Concerto, Brett Dean’s Ariel’s Music, Elena Kats-Chernin’s Ornamental Air, and Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Riffs and Refrains. Also in great demand as a chamber musician, Michael Collins regularly performs in recital with Leon McCawley and Steven Osborne, and in chamber formations with artists such as the Belcea and Takács quartets, Martha Argerich, Stephen Hough, Lars Vogt, Joshua Bell, and Steven Isserlis. In recent seasons he has won increasing regard as a conductor and in September 2010 assumed the post of Principal Conductor of the City of London Sinfonia.