Competition isn't something I like to associate with music, but I can't lie, that's exactly why I started my musical journey. I grew up being the youngest of four sisters and I didn't like that my siblings were learning a skill that I wasn't. So for my second birthday I asked for a violin and the following Christmas my parents bought earplugs for themselves, and a 1/16th size violin for me. Fast forward to age ten and I was introduced to the viola. I was more than happy to ditch my squeaky E string and swap it for the warm resonance of a C, and that's where I've stayed ever since!
At age 13 I followed my sisters’ footsteps and won a scholarship to Wells Cathedral School where I was enrolled on the specialist music programme for the remainder of my school years. During this time I took part in many summer courses during my holidays and toured with the school's chamber orchestra, Wells Virtuosi. This was the first experience I had of travelling abroad with my colleagues, where we had the opportunity to perform and have a holiday at the same time. I quickly realised I had a passion for travelling and felt like I'd won the lottery knowing that musicians can make a living out of touring all over the world! Since then I have travelled to Japan, China, Norway, Stockholm, Greece and Italy, all to work and take part in festivals.
Recently I have found my feet in a comedy quartet (not something I ever thought I would do!) but it's taught me so many new things relating to performance such as stage presence and confidence. Through working with these colleagues I have also been introduced to street performing in Covent Garden which has been a totally refreshing way to do something using my skill that is so light hearted and fun.
On the more serious side of my career, since graduating I have performed alongside musicians such as Midori and have played under the baton of Valery Gergiev at the Pacific Music Festival. When I leave Southbank Sinfonia I hope to combine performing with top orchestras along with continuing my freelance work and supporting my lovely students through their own musical journeys.
Royal Academy of Music
What’s your most memorable moment as a musician?
I have quite a few but one in particular was co-leading the opening night of James Newton Howard's world tour at the Royal Albert Hall. I'm a really big fan of film music and there was something very special about the energy in that concert.
What do you do with your time when you’re not playing music?
I'm a massive foodie, which means I have to find ways and time to exercise too… so I cycle everywhere. It started out as a means to save money actually, but I love it so much now. I've discovered so much more of London by ditching public transport, and it stops me from endlessly scrolling social media on the bus! Apart from eating and cycling I like to travel, and I draw too.