Edward Kay studied at the Royal Northern College of Music under Peter Graeme, and David Theodore in London graduating with a Distinction in Performance Diploma. He entered the Concours International Competitions for oboe in Paris achieving 3rd prize and later Geneva as finalist and was appointed Principal Oboist of the English Northern Philharmonic (Opera North) in 1982. In 1988 he became Principal Oboe of Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, and has often featured as soloist.
Edward occasionally appears as guest Principal Oboe with other British Orchestras most notably since 2010 with London Symphony Orchestra and with the RPO on tour to Azerbaijan and Shanghai. Teaching oboe and wind ensemble coaching has been a constant throughout his career, and taking part in Masterclasses is a regular activity with recent visits to Exeter, Trinity Laban London, and as a Howarth of London Oboe Artist to give a Masterclass and recital at The Royal Irish Academy of Music in Hublin.