Denise Ham

Denise Ham

Denise Ham has an international reputation as a teacher of conducting, with private students coming to her from the USA, China, the Middle East and from across Europe. The basis of the technique she teaches is the Toscanini/Barzin technique- a comprehensive technique that combines fluent use of the baton with economic, natural use of the whole body.

She was tutor in conducting at the Royal Academy of Music from 1986-2009 and from 2006 -2016 founded and taught the Conducting Course at Blackheath Conservatoire, London. For many years she has been on the staff of the George Hurst Conductors’ Course at Sherborne (Canford) Summer School of Music.

Her conducting and teaching career has taken her to Germany, France, Spain, Greece, Switzerland Australia and Bermuda. In the UK principal conductorships have included the Worcestershire Symphony Orchestra, Birmingham Conservatoire, the Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra, the Aberdeenshire Youth Orchestra and currently the Bournemouth Rehearsal Orchestra.

Her instructional DVD, “The Craft of Conducting”, has a worldwide market, with many conductors testifying to its effectiveness in their work and study.

Ed Scolding
Mark Wigglesworth

Mark Wigglesworth

Mark Wigglesworth is Music Director of English National Opera, with whom he has
performed Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Cosi fan Tutte, Falstaff, Katya Kabanova, and
Parsifal.

His other operatic experiences include Peter Grimes and La Boheme at the
Glyndebourne Festival; Elektra, The Rake's Progress, and Tristan und Isolde for
Welsh National Opera; Cosi fan Tutte and Mitridate for the Bavarian State
Opera; The Marriage of Figaro at The Metropolitan Opera, New York; Wozzeck and
Pelleas et Melisande at La Monnaie; Don Giovanni and Peter Grimes at The Sydney
Opera House; and Die Meistersinger von Nuremberg and Rise and Fall of the City of
Mahagonny at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

In the symphonic world, highlights have included concerts with the Berlin
Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the London Symphony, the
Orchestra of La Scala Milan, the Santa Cecilia Orchestra, Rome, the Swedish Radio
Orchestra, the Budapest Festival Orchestra, the Tokyo Symphony, and all the major
orchestras in North America. In Australia he has worked regularly with the Sydney
and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras and enjoys a special relationship with the
Adelaide Symphony.

In the studio, Mark’s recordings have centred on a project with BIS Records to record
all the symphonies of Shostakovich. This cycle has received critical acclaim
throughout the world. Live performances of Mahler’s Sixth and Tenth Symphonies
have been issued by the Melbourne Symphony on the MSO Live label, and the
Brahms Piano Concertos played by Stephen Hough and the Mozarteum Orchestra are
available on the Hyperion label.

Ed Scolding
Colin Metters

Colin Metters

Colin Metters was Head of Conducting at the Royal Academy of Music from 1983 to 2013. His wide experience affords him an enviable reputation as professional conductor, orchestral trainer and conducting instructor. He has worked with leading symphony orchestras in the UK, and guest-conducted extensively abroad.

Colin has an international reputation as a leading pedagogue, and has given masterclasses in Germany, Poland, Finland, Australia, Venezuela, Vietnam, China and the USA.

In 1997 he was appointed Music Advisor and Principal Guest Conductor to the Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra, directing a five-year programme of development. In 1999, in recognition of his work, he was awarded the Vietnamese equivalent of the Order of Merit, the first to be made to a British citizen.

Ed Scolding
Thomas Carroll (soloist)

Thomas Carroll (soloist)

Born in Swansea, Thomas Carroll studied with Melissa Phelps at the Yehudi Menuhin School and with Heinrich Schiff in Austria. An exceptionally gifted cellist, he is one of only two artists who auditioned successfully for both Young Concert Artists Trust in London and Young Concert Artists, Inc. in New York. He has since gone on to give critically acclaimed debut recitals at Wigmore Hall (London), Alice Tully Hall (NY) and in Boston, California, Florida and Washington DC.

As a concerto soloist Thomas has appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, London Mozart Players, ViVA, Orchestra of the East Midlands, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra (conducted by Heinrich Schiff), English Chamber Orchestra, Prague Philharmonic, Sofia Philharmonic, and Bayerischer Rundfunk Orchestra.

Much in demand as a chamber musician, Thomas has worked with the Belcea Quartet, Chilingirian Quartet, Endellion Quartet, Yehudi Menuhin, Ivry Gitlis, Gidon Kremer, Steven Isserlis, Mischa Maisky, Michael Collins, Julian Rachlin at Wigmore Hall, the Edinburgh and Cheltenham International Festivals, among many others. His recordings include Michael Berkeley’s String Quintet with the Chilingirian Quartet for Chandos.

Engagements over the last year have included concerts at Wigmore Hall, the Louvre in Paris, Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Dubrovnik Festival, Bath MozartFest, Mecklenburg Festival and The International Chamber Music Festival in Utrecht with Janine Jansen, Julian Rachlin and Ensemble. Thomas has also given a series of concerts in Tokyo under the auspices of YCA Inc, been resident at the Delft Festival in Holland and appeared as soloist with the BBC Concert Orchestra at the Queen Elizabeth Hall (broadcast by BBC Radio 3), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra and Orchestre Regional de Cannes. In August 07 he made his debut with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in a series of performances of Shostakovich’s Concerto No.2 and received an immediate reinvitation. Last season Thomas returned as soloist with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, performed the Dvorák with the Staatsorchester Braumschweiger, Vivaldi Double Concerto with Heinrich Schiff and the Vienna Chamber Orchestra and gave recitals at the Cheltenham Festival and in Holland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Russia, Sweden and Japan. This season sees a continuation of recitals in series and festivals throughout the UK, South Africa and Europe and concerti with orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia, London Philharmonic Orchestra, London Mozart Players and Cape Philharmonic. 2010 will see the release of Thomas and eminent pianist Llyr Williams’ CD of Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms sonatas on the Orchid Label.

Thomas is currently a Professor at the Royal College of Music in London and the Yehudi Menuhin School.

Ed Scolding
Christopher Seaman

Christopher Seaman

With a long and distinguished career in the US, Christopher Seaman was Music Director of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, New York until 2011 and was subsequently named Conductor Laureate. During his 13-year tenure - the longest in the orchestra’s history - he raised the orchestra’s artistic level, broadened its audience base and created a new concert series. This contribution was recognised with an award from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers.

In the UK he was Principal Conductor with both the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Northern Sinfonia. Other key positions include Music Director of the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, Conductor-in-Residence with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Artistic Advisor of the San Antonio Symphony.

The 2015/16 season includes engagements with the Cinncinati, Baltimore, Vancouver, Milwaukee, and Hawaii Symphony Orchestras. He also opens the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra’s season and makes debuts with Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra, and the Orquestra Filarmônica de Minas Gerais in Brazil.

 

Ed Scolding
Toby Purser

Toby Purser

Toby Purser first came to prominence as a prizewinner in the 2002 Leeds Conducting Competition. He made his debut at English National Opera in November 2014 conducting performances of The Marriage of Figaro, and has recently been awarded the ENO Mackerras Fellowship. He is a regular guest at Grange Park Opera, and other recent engagements include Opera Della Luna, Bampton Classical Opera, and Pimlico Opera. He founded the Orion Orchestra in 2005- an orchestra to give opportunities to exceptionally talented UK graduates. He has also conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, London Concert Orchestra, L’Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, Orchestra of Opera North, Sinfonia Viva, and the St Petersburg Festival Orchestra. His CD ‘Bel Canto’ with tenor Jesús León and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic was released last year.

 

Ed Scolding
Robert Houlihan

Robert Houlihan

Since winning awards at the Besancon International Competition for Conductors, France, and theHungarian Television International Conductors Competition, Robert Houlihan's career has taken him to conduct leading orchestras in France,  Great Britain, Ireland, Germany, Denmark, Holland,  Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Romania, Hungary, Slovenia, Macedonia, Poland, USA, Mexico, Cuba,  Venezuela and South Africa. He conducted for several years at the Opera –Theatre de Metz,  as well as frequently guest-conducting  l'Orchestre National de Lorraine, l'Orchestre de Chambre de Metz and his own ensemble le Nouvel Ensemble Instrumental.                                                                     

From 1990 until 1992 Robert Houlihan was principal conductor of the Tirgu Mures Philharmonic, Romania.  From 1992 to 1998 he held the position of principal conductor and artistic director of the Savaria Symphony Orchestra, Hungary. Festival appearances include the BBC Proms, the Almeida Festival, London, the Budapest Spring Festival, the Bartok Festival, Szombathely, Hungary, the Summer Festival, Amsterdam, the Wurzburg Mozart Festival, Germany,  Kilkenny Arts Week and Wexford Opera Festival, Ireland.

In addition to his conducting appearances Robert Houlihan teaches regularly, giving classes in Ireland, France, Holland, Portugal, Hungary, andVenezuela. From 1989 to 2012 he was a tutor on the conducting faculty, directed by George Hurst, at Canford (Sherborne) Summer School of Music.

Robert Houlihan returned to live in Ireland in December 2002 and now regularly conducts the RTE National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland and RTE Concert Orchestra as well as appearing as with orchestras in Europe.

Ed Scolding
John Longstaff

John Longstaff

John Longstaff read music at Girton College, Cambridge, studied conducting at the Canford Summer School for five years, and won second prize in the 1988 Leeds Conductors Competition. He has held full time positions as rehearsal pianist and conductor at the Opera House in Kiel, Germany, Northern Ballet, and as Musical Director of Young Opera Venture. He is also Director of Music at St. Peter’s Church in Harrogate and was until 2011 Artistic Director of the Sheffield Symphony Orchestra. He made his conducting début with English National Ballet in 2009, where he continues as a guest conductor. He teaches at the Sherborne Summer School of Music and the Advanced Conducting Ireland courses for conductors.


John is also a sought-after orchestrator and arranger. For Northern Ballet he has arranged the music for some 18 productions; including Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, Great Expectations, Madame Butterfly, and Beauty and the Beast. His arrangement of music by Malcolm Arnold for The Three Musketeers has been recorded on the Quartz CD label. In 2011 he assisted Claude-Michel Schönberg (composer of Les Misérables and Miss Saigon) in the editing, orchestration and recording of his new ballet Cleopatra. This year he will be composing a new ballet for children, Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

Ed Scolding
Giovanni Guzzo

Giovanni Guzzo

Venezuelan born violinist Giovanni Guzzo has established himself as one of the most versatile and charismatic performers of his generation. Following his solo debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, critics described him as a wonderfully “magnetic” and “commanding” performer.

A keen recitalist and chamber musician, Giovanni has worked closely with some of today’s leading musicians, including Martha Argerich, Joshua Bell, Martin Fröst, Daniel Hope, Stephen Hough, Mats Lidstrom, Gerhard Schulz, Gábor Takács-Nagy, the Maggini and Takacs Quartets and Maxim Vengerov, to name but a few. His talent has been recognised with numerous awards including Her Majesty the Queen’s commendation for Excellence, HRH Princess Alice's Prize, Gold medal at the Marlow Music Festival, PROMIS award given by the London Symphony Orchestra, finalist at the YCAT (Young Concert Artists Trust) competition and the Manoug Parikian and Myra Hess award.

He appears regularly in live Television and Radio broadcasts, most recently on BBC’s Radio 3 performing the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Manchester Camerata under Gábor Takács-Nagy. A protégé of the renowned French virtuoso violinist Maurice Hasson, Giovanni was granted a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London, from where he graduated with the highest honours. He previously studied with Zakhar Bron at the “Escuela Superior de Musica Reina Sofia” in Madrid.

He continues to perform as soloist and chamber musician in some of the most prestigious venues around the world, including the Wigmore Hall and Zurich Tonhalle, and is a regular guest at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, Schloss Cappenberg and Mecklenburg Vorpommern festivals in Germany.

He is principal guest leader of the Budapest Festival Orchestra conducted by Ivan Fischer; and was recently appointed professor of violin at the Royal Academy of Music in London.

 

Ed Scolding
Jeremy Cooke

Jeremy Cooke

Jeremy Cooke was born in Colchester, Essex in 1970. After reading music at New College, Oxford he spent two years on the piano accompaniment course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with the assistance of the Countess of Munster Trust. His teachers there included Graham Johnson, Nelly Ben-Or and Gordon Back, and he played for masterclasses given by Elisabeth Soderstrom and Kurt Equiluz as well as participating in an exchange with the Paris Conservatoire.

Jeremy has performed widely accompanying for many recitals, competitions and concerts with soloists such as David Wilson-Johnson and the cellist Michael Evans. He has also worked as a repetiteur for European Chamber Opera, Garsington Opera, Pimlico Opera, Grange Park Opera and the Royal Opera House. He is pianist in the Alexandra Trio.

Ed Scolding