Tell us a little bit about yourself and your life. Not necessarily music-related!
I have recently graduated from the University of Glasgow with a Bachelor of Music degree and am beginning my career as a freelance musician: performing, teaching, and doing community music projects. I’m a friendly and inquisitive character; I like to learn new things and explore new places. I’m a sociable person who likes to meet new people; spend time with family and friends; and play/create music with others. I am also very caring and like to help and look out for others.
How did you first get into music?
I began my musical journey in Primary 4 (at the age of 8) when I was very fortunate to start learning the violin through the West Dunbartonshire Council schools music service. This experience changed my life and I am very grateful to have had that opportunity in my primary school.
What made you decide that music would be an important part of your life?
I have always had a strong connection and passion for music which has grown and developed through the years. I decided that music would play an important role in my life when I discovered the power it holds. For instance, I love how music brings people together from different walks of life with their shared love for it; I love the healing properties of music and how it can bring joy, and be soothing, in the hardest of times; I love how you can connect/communicate with people when performing music without using any words, especially with those who find it difficult to express themselves through words.
What has been your musical highlight so far?
I have two which stand out the most. Performing in the premiere of the contemporary piece, The Glasshouse, composed by my good friend Fergus Hall. It took place last August in the Kibble palace, in the Glasgow Botanic Gardens, and I performed it alongside Fergus and a number of our friends. This year when I put together an ambitious programme of traditional folk music, as well as forming a band, for my final solo recital at university, and it was quite successful.
Who are your favourite composers/artists/musicians?
I consider myself to be more of a fiddle player (kinda) than a violinist so I’m really into trad/folk musicians and bands such as: Adam Sutherland, Martyn Bennett, Peatbog Faeries, Niteworks, Lau, Elephant Sessions, Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas, Väsen, Noah And The Whale, Arcade Fire, The Routes Quartet, and so on. But I do like ‘classical’ composers such as Arvo Pärt, Vivaldi, and Yann Tiersen.
I have also always been drawn to pop/rock/metal music with artists and bands such as: Regina Spektor, Lady Gaga, Arctic Monkeys, Nirvana, Hole, Misfits, The White Stripes, Green Day, Blink 182, Rancid, The Distillers, SWMRS etc. However, more recently I’ve been listening to a lot of electronic/rap music with bands and artists like: Die Antwoord, The Naked And Famous, Mansfield.TYA, Daft Punk, Yoko Pwno, Nas, Lizzo, HAIM…
What do you anticipate for the Nevis Ensemble?
I imagine that it will be a very exciting musical adventure that will be successful in introducing and re-introducing orchestral music to diverse communities in Scotland with its fresh, dynamic approach. I hope that, as well as performing, we as musicians will be able to make social connections with audience members in hearing their stories and their thoughts on the music. It will also be a great opportunity, on a personal level, to mix and network with other like-minded musicians in the ensemble also.