Tell us a little bit about yourself and your life. Not necessarily music-related!
I have had a varied career so far, mostly spent in the NHS where I currently work part time as a paramedic. The rest of my time is spent playing music! Being in Nevis Ensemble allows me to bring together two of the things I am most passionate about – making music and bringing joy to the more vulnerable people in society.
How did you first get into music?
I have loved music for as long as I can remember, but I picked up the bassoon when I was 10 years old (much to my mother’s dismay!) and have played it ever since. Making music with other people is absolutely my favourite thing in the world.
What made you decide that music would be an important part of your life?
I don’t think it was ever a decision, as far back as I can remember I have played, sung and listened to music every day and I cannot imagine life without it.
What has been your musical highlight so far?
Playing with Nevis Ensemble! They have given me experiences I would not have had otherwise, and everything is so varied. Particular highlights are playing for people with learning disabilities and older people with dementia. Otherwise, a definite favourite was playing an orchestrated dance medley with Kaleidoscope Orchestra at a sold out rave inside Liverpool Cathedral! Other highlights are playing Mahler’s 8th Symphony with Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra and several choirs at the Symphony Hall in Birmingham, playing the Rite of Spring (complete with original Nijinsky choreography) with Kimichi Community Symphony Orchestra and achieving a 5 star review, as well as playing much small groups like trios and quintets, and of course the odd cheesy bassoon ensemble.
Who are your favourite composers/artists/musicians?
We could be here a while! I’ll try and narrow it down… Stravinsky, Deftones, James Blake, Poulenc, Rachmaninov, Carbon Based Lifeforms, Tchaikovsky, Anna Meredith, Dutileux, Bartók, Holst, Mahler, Shostakovich, Rota, Arcane Roots, Eaves, Liszt, Hans Zimmer, Sibelius, Ravel, Muse, John Williams, Brahms, Mogwai, Pixies, Warpaint, St. Vincent, Sigur Rós, Debussy, Jeff Buckley, Radiohead, Jimi Hendrix…. The list continues!
What do you anticipate for the Nevis Ensemble?
Nevis Ensemble’s philosophy is that music is for everyone, we will continue to work towards achieving things that more mainstream orchestras do not – bringing all kinds of genres of music to people regardless of their individual circumstances and including them in the world of music that they may otherwise be excluded from.