Eric Thomas is a lutenist based in Edinburgh. He studied music at Edinburgh University, dividing his time between performance, composition and musicology, and gained a BMus (Hons) degree. He went onto to pursue his interest in early music completing an MMus in Historically Informed Performance Practice, with the aid of a Carnegie-Cameron postgraduate bursary, jointly at The University of Glasgow and the Royal Conservatiore of Scotland, under the supervision of John Butt, receiving lute tuition from Jamie Akers. Eric continued his studies at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, studying lute and theorbo with Fred Jacobs, and also attended the Urbino Early Music Festival to study with Paul O’Dette and Darlington International Summer School for lessons with David Miller. Eric has started a Phd at the University of Southampton, being awarded a Vice-Chancellor’s Scholarship to research the role of improvisation in Italian lute music. As well as his activity in performance and research, Eric is a dedicated guitar teacher, founding the Bruntsfield Guitar School and is also a guitar tutor at Portobello Music School. He enjoys teaching pupils all ages with pupils ranging from seven to seventy!
Katie Rose Johnston is a visual artist based in Glasgow, having recently graduated in Sculpture with a First Class Distinction from The Glasgow School of Art. She has exhibited in the Cello Factory in London, The Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh, DOK Artist Space in Leith, as well as previously exhibiting at The Whisky Bond in Glasgow and at The Hungarian School of Fine Arts, Budapest. Katie utilises bright colours, textures and organic forms to create intimate yet playful installations that re-interpret the context of craft, the woman and the home.
Emily White is professor of sackbut at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She also teaches trombone and sackbut at The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Wells Cathedral School andco- directs Huntly Summer School with Morag Johnston. She was made Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in the 2016 honours and became an affiliated solo artist to Conn-Selmer in the same year. As a member of The English Cornette and Sackbut Ensemble, she has received two Gramophone awards and a Diapason D’Or. ECSE - who play internationally - performed their BBC Proms debut in 2013. They are especially renowned for their collaboration with vocal ensembles and their many recordings include with I Fagiolini in The Striggio Mass in 40 Parts as well as with Alamire in The Spy’s Choirbook - voted Best Classical CD of 2014 in The Times, and winner of the Gramophone Early Music Award. They gave recitals and collaboration concerts in June and July 2017 in Stour, York and Cheltenham Festivals - and are heading up to the Edinburgh Festival in August .
Emily is also a baroque violinist and is a member of the ground-breaking ensemble In Echo as both a sackbut and violin player. They closed the 2016 York Early Music Festival and their debut CD has been recorded in 2017 with Delphian label. It features both early music repertoire as well as a new commission by Andrew Keeling.
Emily also specialises in contemporary music and is a member of Pandora’s Box, the trombone trio with John Kenny and Miguel Tantos-Sevillano. Artists in residence at the 2016 Cumnock Tryst, the trio have toured internationally and have given recitals across Spain, Portugal, Ireland and USA. In 2017, they were guest artists at the International Trombone Festival in California. She performed the Secret House, Solo Sonata for Female Trombone written for her by John Kenny. This is recorded on the disc Secret House released this summer and also features music based on birdsong written for her by Peter Cowdrey.
Emily studied trombone and violin at The Royal Academy of Music, Guildhall School of Music and Drama and Trinity Laban, and is very appreciative of the inspiration and ideas she has received from teachers and colleagues alike.
Morag Johnston is a Baroque violinist with a background in folk music. Growing up in Shetland, her early musical years were steeped in folk music tradition: learning the rich repertoire by ear from her mother and playing for dance troupes. However after discovering Bach she decided to pursue Baroque music and subsequently won a place at The Conservatory of Music in The Hague where she was taught by Walter Reiter. Now, she studies baroque violin with Veronika Skuplik at Hochschule Für Künste, Bremen.
She has been privileged to receive coaching from many internationally acclaimed baroque artists including: Rachel Podger, Nicolette Moonen, Jaap Ter Linden, Rachel Beesley, Theresa Caudle, Oliver Webber, Kati Debretzeni, Emily White, Allison McGillivray and Frank de Bruine.
Winner of the North Nibley Performing Arts Bursary, she performs regularly with The Bishop's Consort, and with them, repertoire such as The Monteverdi Vespers. Recently, she performed with: Matthew Wadsworth at Totnes Early Music Society; Devon Baroque; in a project with the English Consort and Don Giovanni with Dutch National Opera Academy. She has performed at the Globe Theatre and St. John Smith's In the Square, London. She is a principal member of the groups Northern Lights, Brewery Band and Tappit Hens. She played this August at Utrecht Early Music Festival.
Shona Donaldson originally comes from Huntly and is one of Scotland's leading young tradition bearers. She was in residence in her home town during 2010. Shona is a bothy ballad winner and recorded artist. She has taught at Huntly Summer School for two years.
Alice is a freelance baroque and modern violinist and viola player and enthusiastic educator. In September 2017, having been awarded the Historical Performance Enlightenment Scholarship, Alice began her Master’s studies at The Royal Academy of Music in Margaret Faultless's Historical Performance Department under the tutelage of Rachel Podger, Nicolette Moonan and Jane Rogers. In July 2017 Alice received her Postgraduate Diploma with Distinction from The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, where she was an EMI Sound Foundation Scholar. During her time in Wales, Alice studied modern violin with Lesley Hatfield (Leader of BBC NOW) and Itzhak Rashkovsky (visiting Ian Stoutzker Chair of Violin) and baroque violin with Rachel Podger (International baroque violinist).
Alice, originally from Salisbury, began her violin studies with Daphne Moody and at school achieved her ABRSM Diploma whilst learning with Richard Parsons. Alice recently returned to perform Mozart’s 3rd Violin Concerto with Salisbury Sinfonia. Alice continued her studies with Roger Huckle at the University of Bristol, where she led the Symphony, Chamber and Festival Orchestras. Graduating with a 2:1 Honours in Music in 2015, Alice was awarded the Ladyman Bequest Prize for Chamber Music.
Alice has had a wealth of opportunities on the modern violin. Highlights from her time in Wales included placements with WNO and BBC NOW, the Welsh National Youth Opera’s production of Peter Maxwell Davies' Kommilitonen!, leading Verdi’s Falstaff under Maestro Carlo Rizzi and performing with the Royal Welsh String Soloists for Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace. Beyond college, Alice is a founding member and Marketing Manager for the London-based Zeitgeist Chamber Orchestra who perform a variety of music, ranging from standard symphonies and choral works to contemporary repertoire. Alice performs with the group regularly across the country, most recently as principal second violin and Orchestral Representative at St. Martin’s in the Field in a combined performance with The Epiphoni Consort.
Alice is an experienced baroque player and founding member of Figo, a baroque ensemble specialising in Italian music from the baroque period. As an orchestral musician, Alice has recently performed with Rachel Podger’s Brecon Baroque Festival Orchestra, Sinfonia Britannica, The Welsh Camerata, The Welsh Baroque Orchestra and La Rejouissance . In December Alice was invited to the Houses of Parliament to perform a classical string quartet by Pedro Ximenez Abrill for the Anglo-Bolivian Society. Whilst at RWCMD Alice’s baroque highlights included performing in RWCMD’s Badinerie Baroque Chamber Orchestra, most notably: as Principal Second Violinist in Vivaldi’s Four Seasons with guest soloist Rachel Podger; as a soloist in Valentini’s Concerto for Four Violins; and as a soloist in Bach’s Double Violin Concerto with Simone Pirri. During her time at RAM, Alice has enjoyed the wealth of educational and professional opportunities on offer including performing in the Royal Academy of Music/Kohn Foundation Bach Cantata Series. Alice has taken part in masterclasses with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Rachel Podger, Margaret Faultless, Adrian Butterfield, Gawain Glenton, Nicolette Moonen, Philippe Herreweghe. Alice has studied at Marnaves Summer Baroque, and The Dursley Academy. For the last two years, Alice has been a scholar at Dartington International Summer School, receiving tuition from Margaret Faultless, Adrian Butterfield, Robert Howarth, Laurence Cummings, Emily White, Gawain Glenton , William Lyons and City Musick. Her studies were generously funded by The Dartington International Summer School Foundation, The Dartington Hall Trust and The Musical Sales Charitable Trust.
Alice is also a keen educator and outreach practitioner. Whilst at RWCMD she developed her teaching skills, covering violin teaching at the Junior Conservatoire and working on outreach projects including as an Outreach Leader for the BBC National Orchestra of Wales ‘Try an Instrument’ as part of their ‘Ten Pieces’ project. During her time at RAM, Alice has enjoyed being part of the college's Open Academy department, particularly enjoying her involvement with the 'Cocktails in Carehomes' initiative, and the training provided by the OAE Education team. Alice greatly values her position as tutor at Superstrings Club - coaching chamber music, taking orchestral sectionals and helping with the orchestra and choirs. Building on her employment in 2015 as Residential Social Activity Leader at Kaplan International School of English, Alice also became part of the residential team as the overnight school’s first aider for Superstrings.
2017 Historical Performance Enlightenment Scholarship to The Royal Academy of Music
2017 The Dartington International Summer School Foundation and The Music Sales Charitable Trust
2017 Denne Gilkes Memorial Trust
2015-2017 EMI Sound Foundation Scholarship to The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama
2016 Loan Fund for Musical Instruments
2016 Dartington Hall Trust Scholarship to Dartington International Summer School
2016 Bishop Pike Trust Award
2016 Kirsten Scott Memorial Trust
2015 The Ladyman Bequest Prize for Chamber Music awarded on graduation from the University of Bristol
2014 The Eileen Merry Prize
Annie Rose Lennox
Annie is also a student of Glasgow University where she studies Earth Sciences. She has always had a love for music which prompted her to attended the National Centre of Excellence in Traditional Music in 2015 giving her education in recording as well as experience touring the UK and France. She was awarded Young Burnsian of the Year 2013. Her singing, fiddle and clarsach playing has allowed her to perform in the Royal Albert Hall, the Hydro and around the world by herself and alongside groups such as family band Tripple, Feis Rois, the North East Folk Collective and the Strathspey Fiddlers. She is currently enjoying the vibrant music scene in Glasgow.