Composer Guy Barker MBE’s hot spots.
GUY BARKER MBE TRUMPETER AND COMPOSER The jazz trumpeter is also the musical director for JazzVoice, the opening gala concert at the EFG London Jazz Festival. He’s worked with Frank Sinatra, Sting and Ornette Coleman. Born and raised in London, he lives in Chiswick
If you’re at home in London, what time do you wake up?
I wake up around 7.30am, because I start composing at 8am and I write all day.
Do you have a favourite place to go to for breakfast?
Moot Bar & Restaurant in Chiswick Business Centre serves great breakfasts – everything from eggs royale to pain au chocolat.
What are your favourite buildings?
The Royal Albert Hall is a beautiful and amazing building – inside you can hear wonderful music, especially during the BBC Proms in summer. I’ve played there many times. The nearby Royal College of Music in South Kensington, where I studied as a teenager, is also lovely.
If you could visit any museum or gallery, where would you go?
I enjoy going to the Getty Images Gallery, near Oxford Circus, which is free to visit. I recently saw an exhibition there on Soho, which is such a fascinating, vibrant place.
Which shops do you like?
I prefer to go to individual shops rather than malls, so I might go to Bond Street in the West End or Chiswick High Road.
How do you prefer to travel?
I never learnt to drive, so I use the Tube and occasionally take a cab or the bus.
What is the loveliest green space in town?
It’s got to be Hyde Park; it’s an amazing space. Every time I go there I discover something new. I also like to go to Turnham Green in Chiswick – it’s just a little green around the corner from my house. I go there when I need some ideas.
What is your favourite place in the city to enjoy lunch?
I like the dim sum at Hakkasan on Hanway Place and La Trompette on Devonshire Road in Chiswick. It changes its menu often but the crab tortellini is delicious.
Is there a place in London that holds a special memory for you?
The whole of London inspires me. Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in Soho is very close to my heart; I’m drawn to it. I first went there as a teenager – sometimes I’d go every night and I’d be tired for college the next day. I’d stand at the back and listen to all my idols, hang out with them and talk about music and they’d look out for me!
How do you like to splash out?
An extravagant evening for me would involve great music and great food, then I would hail a cab – it would be a treat because I could take the Tube instead! Having a good time isn’t all about how much money you spend, though – some of the best restaurants are reasonably priced. Clipstone on Clipstone Street in Fitzrovia serves good-value small plates.
Where in London do you go for a drink?
I go to the upstairs bar at Ronnie Scott’s, which is separate from the club.
Where is your favourite place to go for dinner, and who would be your perfect dining partner?
I would go to La Trompette in Chiswick, and I’d take the late composers Igor Stravinsky and Leonard Bernstein. I’d spend the whole meal asking: ‘How did you do that?’ I’m fascinated by great composers who’ve changed the way we think about music.
What do you choose to do if you want a night out in London?
I listen to great music, regardless of genre. I’d go to a concert hall, Ronnie Scott’s, Pizza Express on Dean Street in Soho or the 606 Club near Chelsea Harbour.
Where would you love to spend the night?
The private members’ bar Home House in Portman Square, behind Selfridges department store, has beautiful rooms, but I’d prefer to go home and wake up in my own bed. 11 Nov. Southbank Centre, Royal Festival Hall, Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XX. T: 020-7324 1880. www.efglondonjazzfestival.org.uk
Clockwise from top left: Royal Albert Hall; Guy Barker MBE; Bond Street; Wynton Marsalis at Ronnie Scott’s; dim sum at Hakkasan