Established in 1970, The Centre for Young Musicians has provided musical training of the highest quality for thousands of students in Greater London for over 40 years.
In 2013, the decision was taken to roll out the highly successful CYM model to other parts of the country, particularly to rural areas. Following on from the success of Hestercombe and Norwich CYM, the Saffron Centre for Young Musicians, based at Saffron Walden County High School, which houses the superb Saffron Hall with its internationally acclaimed acoustics, opened in October 2015.
The Saffron Centre for Young Musicians provides emerging musicians aged 5-18 in the East of England with a unique opportunity to play in an ensemble, participate in workshops and have individual tuition for instruments including woodwind, brass, strings, piano, guitars as well as singing. In addition to these practical lessons, students may opt for more academic subjects; composition, musical history, theory and aural perception will all be on offer.
Working within a wide curriculum, every student has an opportunity to develop their individual musicianship across the broadest possible spectrum. The Centre operates every Saturday in term-time from 9.30 am to 12.30 for 30 Saturdays over the academic year, and is suitable for any young musician who is already able to sing or play an instrument. . Places are offered on the basis of potential, taking into account the candidates age, musical education and experiences to date. Those with sufficient potential can be accepted at any stage of their musical development, and there is no minimum standard’
CYM has been a division of the Guildhall School of Music & Drama since 2009, and plays a part in the Guildhall Young Artists progression routes, from primary education right through to graduate and post-graduate studies in music. It is committed to offering excellence in achievement as well as wider opportunities.
Abby is an enthusiastic and imaginative cellist with broad musical interests complementing a deep love of classical repertoire.
After studying at Cambridge University and the Royal College of Music she built a reputation as a baroque/classical cellist, leading to performances at the BBC Proms, and many recordings and broadcasts with ensembles such as The Kings Consort and English National Opera.
She was the cellist and bass violinist in the ensemble ‘The Private Music’ that won the International Early Music Competition in 1999, leading to tours in the Netherlands, Sweden and the Bath International Festival.
As a chamber music coach, Abby has taught at Morley College, Westminster and co-run residential courses for adult string players. She now teaches cello privately and locally, at Linton Village College. She works as a registered music therapist in South Cambridgeshire and Suffolk. An experienced and supportive teacher, Abby is also able to tutor children with additional needs.
During her training in music therapy, an active engagement in improvisation developed, which is currently pursued with the London-based Le Collectif des Improvisateurs and in collaborations with experimental film-makers such as Anna Cady.
Clarinet and Saxophone
Amy graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2012 having studied clarinet with Joy Farrall, Andrew Webster and Nick Carpenter. Amy took part in various masterclasses with Andrew Marriner, Andreas Sunden and Eddie Daniels. During her time at Guildhall, Amy was awarded bursaries from the former MBF and Sir John Barbirolli Foundation.
Amy has performed in most London venues and varying European venues and has been lucky to perform with: Alfie Boe, Rod Stewart, Joss Stone, Cliff Richard, and Alesha Dixon.
Since graduating, as well as being a freelance clarinettist, Amy has developed as a woodwind teacher and coach in the Hertfordshire and Essex area. Amy is a peripatetic clarinet, saxophone and theory teacher at Hockerill Anglo-European College and SWCHS. At Hockerill, Amy also runs a clarinet club, saxophone ensemble and a theory class.
As a hobby, Amy plays the trumpet for the Central Band of the Royal British Legion where she has performed for most of the Royal Family and at many prestigious venues: including Wimbledon’s Centre Court each year for the finals.
Clare Finnimore – Britten Sinfonia, visiting professor
Clare grew up in Letchworth, North Hertfordshire, where after hearing a professional string quartet perform live at her primary school she was inspired to begin studying the violin with the quartet’s leader, Anne Macnachten. As a result, and thanks to an amazing County Music Service, Clare’s early musical life was one immersed in chamber music playing. She then went on to study with David Takeno at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, where she was awarded the Birdie Warshaw Prize for Unaccompanied Bach and the School Viola Prize.
While still a student she co-founded and was principal viola in the Guildhall String Ensemble, coached by David Takeno. The group, who were international prize-winners, toured worldwide for the next 20 years, making their Carnegie Hall Debut in 1991. They appeared on Blue Peter and Omnibus, made numerous recordings for RCA Red Seal and broadcast frequently on BBC Radio 3.
As soloist, Clare has performed at the Aldeburgh, Brighton and Malvern festivals, at the Wigmore Hall and throughout the USA. She recently stepped up as soloist at a few hours’ notice to perform Flos Campi by Vaughan Williams with Britten Sinfonia and Britten Sinfonia Voices at Milton Court, Barbican, London. The concert was broadcast live on BBC Radio 3.
‘ Ulysses Awakes’ by John Woolrich was written for and premiered by Clare and the Guildhall String Ensemble. She has performed it many times, most recently with Britten Sinfonia as part of Woolrich’s 60th Birthday celebrations.
As well as playing Principal Viola in Britten Sinfonia for the last 12 years, Clare has a regular chamber group – Britten Oboe Quartet – with oboist Nicholas Daniel, violinist Jacqueline Shave and cellist Caroline Dearnley, which performs regularly at Festivals around the UK. She has also played as guest with the Aronovitz Ensemble and the Nash Ensemble.
As a session musician Clare is proud to be one of about 90 musicians on the soundtracks to films such as Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy; The Hobbit and James Bond ‘Skyfall’. She has played live with Sting, Bjork, Kylie Minogue, Florence and the Machine and also Kiki Dee and Carmelo Luggeri.
Clare is deputy professor at Trinity College of Music and has mentored and adjudicated the performance prize at the Royal Academy of Music. She is also regularly involved with the Britten Sinfonia Creative Learning dept. and Britten Sinfonia Academy.
By the age of twenty, Australian pianist Lesley Young had made many radio and television broadcasts, performed at the Sydney Opera House and appeared as soloist with leading Australian orchestras.
After winning the Australian Broadcasting Commission’s prestigious concerto competition in 1975, she undertook postgraduate performance studies at the RNCM and subsequently a Master’s degree at the Royal College of Music. She studied with Max Olding, Ryszard Bakst, Benjamin Kaplan and Yonty Solomon, and in masterclasses with Vlado Perlemuter, Jorge Bolet, Ronald Smith, Sergei Dorensky and John Lill, amongst others.
Since her critically acclaimed Wigmore Hall debut in 1977, Lesley has established a reputation as soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe and Australia, playing with major orchestras and performers, and commissioning and premiering a number of new works. Her performances have been praised for the beauty and range of their tone colour, and for their penetrating musical insight.
Her repertoire is wide-ranging, but she is perhaps best known for her interpretations of large-scale Romantic piano music. Lesley has a passion for chamber music in all its forms, and in recent years she has collaborated with the Bingham String Quartet in performances of piano quintets by Schumann, Brahms and Dvorak.
Lesley’s busy teaching schedule has included work with gifted children, master classes and workshops for both students and teachers, and in Australia, the establishment of the Piano Department at James Cook University. She is much in demand as an adjudicator and has tutored on a number of piano courses, both in England and abroad. She was Head of Keyboard Studies at Colchester Institute Faculty of Creative Arts from 1995 to 2015 where she also led the Music Masters programme, further reflecting her strong commitment to the education and specialist needs of young musicians.
Ruth Ehrlich – Britten Sinfonia, visiting professor
Ruth Ehrlich was for some years the leader of the Fairfield string quartet, with whom she toured extensively, broadcast for the BBC and German radio, and recorded the Debussy and Ravel quartets on the Hyperion label. During a few years of living in New York she played in the orchestra of the Metropolitan Opera. Ruth has also worked frequently with the English Chamber Orchestra, and with several groups specialising in contemporary music, including Lontano and Apartment House. Currently she is a member of the Britten Sinfonia, with whom she will be touring China in the spring. Having performed over the years in most of the major concert halls of Europe and many beyond, she rates Saffron Hall as one of her favourites.
In Cambridge, where she lives, she has taught at King’s College School and has a number of private students.
Amy first came to Clare College from Yale in 1975 with a Mellon Fellowship in musicology to pursue early music performance practice. Her singing in the University led to further training on the Opera Course at the Royal Academy of Music, where she also obtained her Teachers’ LRAM. She returned to Cambridge and has performed and taught there ever since, focussing on choral scholars in many Cambridge colleges, and as Head of Classical Voice at Anglia Ruskin University. Last year she added Saffron Centre for Young Musicians to her already established work in Saffron Walden and began teaching for Heritage School.
Amy is in demand for vocal workshops, as an adjudicator and opera producer. A Senior Member of Hughes Hall College, she directs its choir and helps oversee a thriving concert series. Amy teaches private pupils of all ages and abilities.
She has been active in Cambridge Summer Music for the past 10 years, serving both on its Board of Trustees and Executive Committee.
Her other professional work is as page turner for Kettles Yard, Saffron Hall, and Cambridge Festival concerts.
Choirs, kodaly and violin
Mish has had a varied musical career. She studied Music at York University and then a further degree at Surrey. Both colleges had a strong element of practical music making and composition. As teaching and directing choirs increased she became interested in how one hears music inwardly, trying various different methods to help choirs pitch, or extend the her own and her pupils compositional imagination.
This became centre stage when leading young choirs in Essex Music Service, Kent Music and then the Outreach department at Durham Cathedral. Children and their teachers across the North East took part in school projects termly, many staying on to create in-house choirs and yearly children’s opera. Through contact with the National Youth Choir of Scotland (NYCoS), she regularly visits Budapest, the home of Kodaly, to observe and learn from teachers there, and bring back similar ideas that would suit our own culture.
Throughout these ‘choral years’ she had continued to gain enormous pleasure from playing chamber music with friends. Currently she balances her love of violin playing and teaching, choral directing, Kodaly at Early Years and Primary, and is currently engaged in writing an opera for children, based on Yehudi Menuhin and Christopher Hope’s book ‘The King, the Cat and the Fiddle, which she hopes to stage with live young violinists and singers in a year or two.
Flute, wind ensembles and Kodaly
Emma grew up in Saffron Walden and began learning the flute at primary school. She attended the junior department at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music where she also passed her ATCL diploma in performance with distinction. Emma then went to study music, MusB (Hons), at the University of Manchester focussing her study on performance under the tutelage of Linda Verrier. She spent much of her time playing the flute and piccolo with orchestras and ensembles as well as studying conducting. Emma has taken part in masterclasses with inspirational flautists such as Ian Clarke, Paul Edmund-Davies and Anna Noakes.
Emma is currently developing as a flute tutor in the Essex area, teaching one-to-one lessons and working with young people in ensembles.
Guy Llewellyn is a French Horn player and is a member of The British Paraorchestra, Army of Generals and the Charles Hazlewood All-Star-Collective. Recent appearances with these groups have included Glastonbury Festival (2016) and broadcasts on BBC television and radio. In 2016, Guy also appeared in the Channel 4 ‘Superhuman’s’ advert, promoting the 2016 Paralympic Games.
Beyond performing, Guy is also is also an experienced teacher of both the horn and brass ensembles. As a horn teacher, he has coached students from beginner level, some of whom have gone on to study at Conservatoires. He has also been a key contributor to the formation of Prime Brass’ development group ‘Junior Prime Brass’ and continues to assist with coaching sessions for that group. With Prime Brass, Guy has also tutored horns on their highly successful one-day brass ensemble workshops. Outside of the world of music, Guy has been active in changing attitudes towards people with disabilities, working with organisations such as the Spinal Injuries Association, SCOPE and Channel 4. He has also worked with young people in schools on extended curriculum days, to explore and change views of disability.
Recipient of the Freda Dinn and Ida Marbett Award, Joshua Lynch is a passionate devotee of chamber music and has already enjoyed a diverse and creative career. Having graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music under the guidance of Emma Ferrand and Gillian Thoday, he is about to commence his postgraduate study at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama to study with Ursula Smith.
Former cellist of the Cassia String Quartet, Joshua had regular lessons alongside his colleagues with their mentors Peter Cropper and Robin Ireland (Lindsay Quartet), Oliver Wille (Kuss Quartet) and James Boyd. The quartet were recipients of the Musiciens Entre Guerre et Paix Award from the International Académie Ravel and performed at the Wigmore Hall, The Crucible (MitR), Salisbury International Arts Festival and Leeds International Concert Series.
Away from the concert platform, the Cassia quartet also enjoyed working alongside several bands, most notably New Order, James, Daughter and Blossoms, as well as Mancunian poet, Mike Garry. Joshua works regularly with his duo partner, pianist Sally Halsey, and enjoys a busy concert schedule.
Joshua is a passionate teacher who has held numerous teaching positions in and around Greater Manchester. Being a passionate chamber musician, Joshua’s tuition emphasises the cruciality of playing, working and listening well to and with others. His post as a depute chamber music coach at Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and being a regular tutor at Pro Corda, allows Joshua to share his love of the art of chamber music with the young musicians with whom he mentors. His student’s progression and success illustrates that his pedagogical philosophy creates the ideal environment for both learning and enjoying the cello.
Martyn studied trumpet at the University of Wales, Cardiff with Andy Cuff and later at the Royal College of Music with Paul Archibald, Andy Crowley and Mike Lovatt. His West End and UK / European touring show experience is extensive and includes Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (principal), Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, the Rat Pack: Live from Las Vegas, Mary Poppins, Oliver! Sweet Charity and Phantom of the Opera. Additionally, he has played as principal trumpet with the National Concert Orchestra of Great Britain, the Glenn Miller Orchestra UK and the National Youth Jazz Orchestra and has even performed on Top of the Pops and music videos.
A qualified classroom music teacher, Martyn currently teaches brass in several local village colleges, primary and independent schools. He formed and directed the Herefordshire Youth Jazz Orchestra, conducted the Hammersmith & Fulham Youth Orchestra and is currently forming the City of Cambridge Brass Band Youth Academy for advanced young brass players in the Cambridge area.
Nicola Goldscheider, Britten Sinfonia, visiting professor
After finishing her studies at Chetham’s school of music in Manchester, Nicola won a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Whilst there she received chamber music coaching from members of the Amadeus Quartet and solo masterclasses from Anne Sophie Mutter. In her postgraduate year she concentrated on her chamber music as a member of the Kayser Quartet winning many prizes.
Nicola’s freelance career takes her all over the world with various ensembles and orchestras, recording and playing live broadcasts regularly on the radio. She is one of the founder members of the Britten Sinfonia and plays regularly with the BBC symphony orchestra which gives her the opportunity to play regularly at the Royal Albert Hall during the BBC Proms season. She regularly performs with the English National Opera and has just completed a highly acclaimed run of Wagners Mastersinger’s at the London Coliseum.
Nicola is first violin of The Goldfield Ensemble-a vibrant collective of soloists, chamber musicians, orchestral players and scholars. Founded in 2011 by a group of close friends, the Ensemble has quickly established itself as a high calibre, proactive chamber group with a growing reputation for innovative programming of lesser-known, unusual repertoire and eclectic collaborations.
Daniel de Souza
Daniel de Souza is a graduate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, with both Bmus and Mmus degrees. Whilst at the Guildhall he studied with Hugh Seenan, Jeffery Bryant, David Pyatt, Jonathan Lipton, Chris Parkes, and Alec Frank-Gemmill, as well as Natural Horn studies with Roger Montgommery. Daniel maintains a busy freelance career as an orchestral player with groups including the New English Concert Orchestra, Southern Sinfonia, the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the later including tours to Switzerland and Dubai. He has also traveled to Mumbai, India to perform with the Bombay Chamber Orchestra. Daniel is also a historical horn specialist and has played with groups including the Jeune Orchestre de l’Abbaye, Amadae Players, and Dartington Baroque Orchestra, as well as side by side projects with the Academy of Ancient Music and the English Concert. As well as teaching at SCYM, Daniel has been involved in many outreach and education programmes including the LSO onTrack scheme, the Chipping Campden Festival Youth Orchestra and the Wigmore Hall’s Chamber Tots initiative. From September 2016 Daniel will be visiting Brass Teacher at Sherfield School in Hampshire.
Karen Semken grew up near Colchester in Essex and began her musical life studying guitar with Melvyn Willin and playing in the Guitar Youth Orchestra. She studied music at Anglia Ruskin University, specialising in classical guitar with Chris Kilvington, graduating with a BA Hons in music.
On graduation she took a CT ABRSM course and has spent the last 20 years living and working in the Saffron Walden area. She has experience of many types of performing including solo work, playing in duo with other guitarists and the flute in the duo Andante.
She now has a private guitar teaching practice and also works in a number of local schools. She is a highly experienced tutor with proven results at all levels from beginners to grade 8 and beyond. She has a particular interest in working with guitar ensembles and smaller groups of students.
Still living near to Saffron Walden with her husband and daughters she is fully involved in village life and enjoys going to concerts and country walks.
Violin and musicianship (string sparks, prelude strings and beginner)
Born in Cambridgeshire, much of her childhood was spent immersed in music, from an early age she benefited from being part of a girls’ choir. Charlotte also performed in local youth orchestras from a young age up until university. These provided the opportunity to tour the UK and Europe performing in a vast number of choral and orchestral works, in a wide range of venues. It was on one orchestra tour when Charlotte was enlisted as an assistant tutor that inspired her to become a music teacher.
Charlotte attended Junior Trinity College of Music in London; studying violin under the tutorship of Adrian Dunn, voice with Mary Wiegold, and percussion.
She graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a degree in music performance, her primary instrument being voice with the ability to continue violin lessons and perform in the university orchestra.
Following completion of her PGCE teaching qualification, she has held various teaching positions including Head of Music at a school in Yorkshire. This included responsibility for teaching Key Stage 3 and GCSE levels, as well as coordinating external peripatetic teachers, orchestras and choirs.
Charlotte specialises in teaching mixed strings to whole classes in primary schools. This is often a first introduction to musical performance; students are provided the opportunity to learn an instrument for an entire year.
Charlotte also has a wealth of experience working with string orchestras from beginner to intermediate level, she studied conducting as part of her music degree.
Musicianship and trumpet
James is a composer and jazz trumpeter living in Walthamstow, East London. His varied experiences across the fields of jazz, pop, classical and world music have shown the importance of developing all-around musicianship including improvisation, listening abilities, composing skills and ensemble interaction, all attributes he strives to develop in his students. His musical education includes the Guildhall School of Music and Drama Cambridge University and the Royal Academy of Music and he has taught music in many forms for organisations such as Cambridge School of Visual and Performing Arts, Newham Music and in schools across Cambridgeshire, Essex and London. James has performed around the world including at London’s Barbican Centre, the Montreaux Jazz Festival and at the World University Games in China, and has worked with artists including Liane Carroll, Shlomo, Charlotte Church and Camille O’Sullivan. An active composer and performer, James can regularly be seen with groups including Vesperados, Highwalk, Mode9, Voyagers and the Wildnerness Orchestra.
James’ qualifications include: MMus (Jazz Trumpet Performance), Guildhall School of Music and Drama; and MA (Music), University of Cambridge. He is currently undertaking a PGCert in Performance Teaching at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Dan Forshaw is an award-winning saxophonist, educator and composer who studied in both New York and London. He has been performing as a professional musician since the age of 16 and has just released his 13th album called ‘Jazz Vespers’. Dan is a charismatic teacher who seeks to inspire students to find their own creative voice, particularly in improvisation, which Dan teaches to our jazz ensemble at SCYM. Dan currently teaches saxophone at Cambridge University and has an innovative website, Cambridge Saxophone.com where students from all over the world are able to study with him – including one student in Antartica! He has a busy performing & recording schedule with his own jazz trio and an eclectic mix of ensembles from Rock Bands to cathedral choirs!.
Accompanist and piano
Alastair Chilvers currently holds the Lucille Graham Conductor/Repetiteur Fellowship at the Royal Academy of Music, where he received a MA (with Distinction) in Piano Accompaniment studying with Michael Dussek. Last year he was selected to participate in the prestigious Solti Accademia Peretti Masterclasses for Repetiteurs in Venice where he studied with Maestro Bonynge. He recently acted as Assistant Conductor for West Green House Opera’s 2016 production of La Traviata, working alongside Oliver Gooch.
At the Royal Academy of Music, Alastair was selected to join the highly prestigious Song Circle and won several awards for his achievement. Previously, he read Music at Queens’ College, Cambridge where he was Assistant Conductor for Cambridge University Music Society (CUMS) from 2012 to 2014 and President of St. Margaret’s Society of Queens’ College in 2012 to 2013. He was awarded the University Instrumental Award for Chamber Music in 2011 and 2012. He conducted numerous performances at West Road with CUMS Concert Orchestra and Wind Orchestra (CUWO) and also conducted Mozart’s Magic Flute with Cambridge Youth Opera in 2013.
Head of Centre
Kate Goatman is a trumpet player and teacher. She started learning the trumpet at primary school and from the age of eleven she attended the junior department at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Kate went on to study at the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, under the tutelage of Howard Snell. After completing her studies, she returned to the Guildhall as a post-graduate specialising in orchestral performance. As a trumpeter Kate has performed with leading orchestras including both the Royal Philharmonic and BBC Philharmonic Orchestras.
Kate now teaches brass in local schools including Saffron Walden County High School and The Leys School Cambridge.
Born in Suffolk, Lewis Braham began playing the bass at the age of fifteen.
He is a graduate from the Royal College of Music in London and studied with Tony Hougham, the Principal Double Bass of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
Since beginning his studies at the RCM, Lewis has performed in many prestigious venues across London and the UK, including Nutcracker with the English National Ballet at London Coliseum, Last Night of the Christmas Proms with the London Concert Orchestra at the Barbican Centre, London Concert Orchestra at Symphony Hall Birmingham, the X Factor ‘Disco Week’ Live Show at Fountain Studios Wembley, Stonefree Festival at the 02 Arena, and many concerts at Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Cadogan Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Maida Vale Studios, Snape Maltings and St Paul’s Cathedral.
Lewis is an experienced session player, he has played in recording sessions at Abbey Road Studios, Angel Studios and Metropolis Studios, and is also in demand within the Royal College of Music, recording new works by its student composers.
He has worked with many internationally renowned conductors and musicians such as Bernard Haitink, Vladimir Jurowski, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Sir Roger Norrington, Edward Gardner, Nicola Benedetti, Jennifer Pike, Deep Purple, Rick Wakeman and Milos Karadaglic. Lewis has also performed in masterclasses with distinguished bassists Joel Quarrinton, Enrico Fagone, Gabriele Ragghianti, Dan Styffe, Paul Ellison and Donovan Stokes.
In 2015 Lewis premiered ‘Leaving St Kilda’ a piece composed for him by renowned bassist David Heyes. Leaving St Kilda depicts the last few days and the evacuation of the island St. Kilda in the 1930’s after centuries of inhabitation.
Lewis is the Lower Strings Tutor for the Suffolk Youth Orchestra, where he held the position of principal Bass before he moved to London. He has toured extensively around Europe with the Suffolk Youth Orchestra, performing in many venues in across Spain, Italy, Germany, Holland, Czech Republic and Poland.
Lewis is an Instrumental Teacher for Thurrock Music Services, Visiting Teacher of Double Bass (Maternity Cover) at Haileybury, Visiting Teacher of Double Bass at South Lee School in Bury St Edmunds, Peripatetic Lower Strings Teacher at St John’s School in Billericay, Double Bass Professor for the Arts Academy and also teaches privately.
Lewis is a budding conductor, having studied under Peter Stark and Natalia Luis-Bassa. He also partakes in participatory music education, which involves organising musical workshops for children and adults.