Trumpet / Cornet / Soprano / Flugelhorn
Music was a big part of our family as we were growing up. My dad was (and still is) a player and teacher at City of Waterford Brass in Waterford, Ireland. Some of my earliest memories are spending Sunday Morning’s in the band room with my older sister Julie while Dad rehearsed with the band.
Dad was my first teacher, on cornet, I started at about 5 years of age, working through tune a day (must try and complete it at some point). There are probably too many other teachers and inspiring players to list on this site, and I discover more all the time, quite a few now younger than me too!
I progressed through the ranks with the band, enjoying many contest successes (and failures!) and concert performances. My Trumpet playing started at about 12 years of age, when attending lessons at local music college. I successfully auditioned for a place with the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland which was a whole new world of music to me a the time. While studying Computer Science at college, I started playing in more musicals and with other genres of music (busking, badly, the emerging Acid Jazz Scene and very badly played blues and jazz).
I still try and play as many genres as possible, but with work and other commitments I chose to focus on sticking more to what I was “trained” for, so at the moment parking big band / jazz.
In August 2018 joined the Hitchin Band on Solo Cornet, moving on to Soprano Cornet in May 2019.
I have previously played with:-
- Regent Brass – Principal Cornet, Soprano Cornet
- Welwyn Garden City Band – Soprano Cornet
- Aveley & Newham Band – Cornet (occasionally, Soprano Cornet)
- Manx Concert Brass – Soprano Cornet / Cornet
- St Patricks Brass Band (now City of Waterford Brass)
I also “dep” occasionally for many bands in the London & Southern Counties area, including Regent Community Brass, Potters Bar Town Band, Fulham Brass, Ware Brass, Redbridge Brass and more recently Milton Keynes Brass.
In 2006 I had the privilege of playing with the world famous Grimethorpe Colliery band, which was a tremendous experience. I played in two concerts over a weekend under the baton of Richard Evans who sadly passed away recently.
I played first trumpet with the North London Symphony Orchestra for a number of years while living in North London, only stepping down when we moved to Bedfordshire. From February 2011 until 2019 I played trumpet/cornet with the City of London Symhonic Winds. In November 2011 I appeared as a soloist with CLSW playing Elegy for Miles Davis which is the 2nd Movement of Sir Richard Rodney Bennett’s Concerto for Trumpet and Wind Orchestra (recording here).
In June 2018 I was again featured soloist with CLSW, this time playing the challenging Concerto for Cornet, Flugelhorn and Trumpet by Warren Barker.
I also am a regular (are we allowed say founding member?) of The Brass Foundry, where I play Eb Trumpet with the Symphonic Group, and 2nd Trumpet with the 11 piece outfit. This is a really exciting and challenging group to play with. All the arrangements (to date) have been by founder Edward Solomon, who, taking inspiration from the “standard” large symphonic brass ensemble, but has added a few more instruments for good measure.
Other orchestras I have played with include:-
- Audentior Symphony Orchestra
- Corinthian Chamber Orchestra
- The Angel Orchestra
- South East London Orchestra, including being a guest Soloist, playing the Haydn Trumpet Concerto in Eb.
- Royal Orchestral Society
- London Shostakovich Orchestra
- Philharmonia Britannica
- Bloomsbury Chamber Orchestra
- Midsummer Opera
- Adoramus Orchestra, including a trip to Normandy in France in May 2011
- The Finchley Chamber Orchestra
- The Trinity Orchestra
- The Beckenham Corale
- The Manx Sinfonia
- X-Nyoi reunion orchestra
- National Youth Orchestra of Ireland
- Wexford Sinfonia
I have also played in pit orchestras for many musical theatre productions.. I’ll get around to listing the shows soon!
I have taught Trumpet and Cornet privately for a number of years. I have studied many methods from Arban, to Caruso, Claude Gordon and lately Stienstrup. I have had lessons and attended master classes from Howard Snell, Rod Franks, Mark O’Keeffe and Noel Langley to name a few. Paul Archibald took over as MD of Regent in January 2014, so effectively getting master classes on a weekly basis!