About SCYM and our tutors

Saffron Centre for Young Musicians was established in 2015 and provides emerging musicians aged 4-18 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, percussion as well as singing. In addition to these practical lessons, students may opt for more academic subjects; composition, musical history, theory and aural perception. Ensembles on offer range from a full brass band, a symphony orchestra, choirs, jazz and wind ensembles and a variety of string ensembles. We also provide an early years music programme, including Kodaly method classes for children aged 4 and up. Each year SCYM students are offered places to read music at university or conservatoire, but not everyone specialises in music. We do all love it though!

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 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.

SCYM offers an enriching and focussed musical education from primary education right through to year 13. We are committed to offering excellence in achievement as well as wider opportunities.

The partnership that forms Saffron Centre for Young Musicians is formed of Saffron Hall, Essex Music Education Hub and Saffron Walden County High School. This leads to many first class and unique opportunities for performance, masterclasses and workshops as well as holiday courses. SCYM’s tutors are experienced and committed music educators and we are proud to say that we are strong and friendly community. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Head of Centre

Kate Llewellyn


Kate was appointed Head of Saffron Centre for Young Musicians at its inception in 2015, and with her team has developed the Centre into a thriving and successful music school.

Kate is a graduate of Royal Northern College of Music (Howard Snell), and a postgraduate of Guildhall School (Ray Simmons and John Miller) She was also a junior exhibitioner at Junior Guildhall (Andrew Mitchell).

As a trumpet player Kate played for the Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonie der Nationem, as well as with Royal and BBC Philharmonic Orchestras and Welsh National Opera. As an educator Kate has taught for several years locally at both primary and secondary level and is a dedicated to giving every young person the highest quality of teaching possible. She currently teaches at SCYM and Saffron Walden County High School.

Kate is the founder of Saffron Walden Children’s Orchestra holiday courses. She also enjoyed a successful career in employee relations and talent development at the global publishing house Pearson Education, and works with Essex Music Services on their mentoring team.

Kate has just completed her MA in Music Education with Trinity Laban.

Centre Administrator

Sophie Stafford



Amy Morrow-Plant

Clarinet, saxophone and theory

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. 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.

Amy Klohr


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.

Mish Kelly

Violin and strings

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.

Malachi Siner Cheverst


Malachi is a first study cellist and second study pianist from Colchester. He studied at the Colchester Institute before going on to complete his undergraduate with Naomi Butterworth and Gabrielle Baldocci at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.

He performs regularly in groups such as the Royal Orchestral Society, Colchester Symphony Orchestra and the Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra. As well as specialising in classical music, Malachi is also highly prolific in the Folk and Popular Music arenas with a large proportion of time being spent working with local and national bands. He has performed with groups at the Hammersmith Apollo, supported the Fratellis and Rudimental at Brownstock Music Festival and performed at numerous London venues. Malachi also ran folk music nights in Greenwich and headed a youth jazz band in Colchester for three years.

Karen Semken

Classical guitar

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.

Living in Saffron Walden with her husband and daughters she enjoys going to concerts and country walks.

Daniella Ganeva

Percussion and piano

Born in Bulgaria and now resident in the UK, is considered to be a pioneer of solo percussion and one of the finest marimba artists of our time. Her solo and collaborative work has earned her a great deal of respect and critical acclaim from audiences and musicians worldwide.

‘I would recommend Ganeva for atmosphere, delicacy and what one might call an ‘ambient’ musical experience….’  The Gramophone

Daniella has performed at major festivals and concert halls around the world as a soloist and with leading chamber and symphony orchestras.  The broad spectrum of her interests places her equally at ease with classical or contemporary music, music theatre, multimedia projects and dance.  A passionate advocate of new music for percussion, Daniella has worked closely with composers such as David Horne, Piers Hellawell, Rihards Dubra, Evelyn Ficarra and Julio ‘Escrivan in developing and promoting exciting new repertoire. She is a founder of Framed Resonance, a duo with percussionist Paolo Cimmino that weaves a blend of contemporary music, eastern rhythms and folklore. Other recent collaborations have included performances and recordings with flautist Henrik Svitzer and cellist/baritone Matthew Sharp.

A Fellow of HEA and a dedicated educator, Daniella regularly visits universities and colleges across Europe and the Americas to present her inspirational master classes. She is the professor of marimba studies at the Royal College of Music, for whom in 2009 she developed the first Postgraduate Advanced Solo Marimba Studies Programme available in London. She regularly appears as a jury member on the panels of international percussion competitions and is the past President of The Percussive Arts Society Chapter for the UK and Ireland.

Daniella has recorded for Signum, Cala, GMN records and her recordings are considered by many to include some of the finest performances of the repertoire yet available. Her latest album ‘Mystic Rose’ includes works especially written for her by Latvian composer Rihards Dubra. It presents a depth of sonority, laced with surprising choral and medieval undertones not usually associated with percussion. Daniella’s unmistakable combination of warm, subtle marimba tones and dazzling virtuosity have now become a trademark that continues to inspire and enthral audiences worldwide.

James Cairns

Flute and musicianship

James Cairns is a committed and dedicated teacher of music.  He was a scholar at the RNCM, studying flute with Peter Lloyd, Richard Davis, and piccolo with Joanne Boddington.  James has played with some of the UK’s top orchestras and has been guest principal flute alongside numerous chamber music recitals across the UK.  James performed with DJ Switch, the world’s no.1 DJ in a rare performance of Gabriel Prokofiev’s concerto for DJ and Orchestra and was previously Musical Director for a music hub, working with over 700 students on a weekly basis, conducting orchestras and choirs, establishing a community choir in 2019.  James has also commissioned works for orchestra, solo flute, and loves new music.
James was principal flute of the Cambridge University Orchestra, and has worked with Yan Pascal Tortelier, Garry Walker, Joshua Weilerstein, Delyana Lazarova, Sir Mark Elder and Dr Timothy Reynish.
James has played for Sir James Galway, William Bennett, Rachel Brown, Sharon Bezaly, Robert Dick, Robert Winn, Hansjorg Schellenberger and Dr Kristian Steenstrup.
James has recently finished his PGCE at the University of Cambridge and has a Master of Education in Leadership and Management.  James has always found teaching to be his forte and loves sharing and music-making with young people.  James is keen to make music education accessible, inclusive, and equitable for everyone.  James has more than ten years of teaching experience, inside and outside of the classroom, with exceptional exam results. James has also taught for the RNCM Outreach department.
James was the winner of the Homerton College, Cambridge University music prize in 2023.  James has been appointed as the Director of Music at HRS from September 2023.

Lucy Haggerwood-Bullen

Violin and strings

Lucy is a freelance violinist and teacher who recently graduated with a Master of Arts from Trinity Laban Conservatoire, studying with Walter Reiter. She previously attended the University of Birmingham where she achieved a BMus (Hons) degree specialising in performance. She started learning the violin aged 6 and was lucky to have wonderful teachers from both Essex Music Service and The Guildhall School of Music junior department who have inspired her to go into teaching. As well as SCYM, Lucy now teaches for Essex Music Service, various primary schools and privately.

As a performer Lucy has performed with many different ensembles in major concert halls such as Wigmore Hall, Cadogan Hall, the Barbican and Symphony Hall Birmingham. As a soloist she has performed with the University of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Birmingham and Trinity Chamber Orchestras. Whilst training she spent most of her time playing in ensembles and has been lucky enough to take part in projects alongside musicians from top Orchestras such as the CBSO, Philharmonic and BBC Symphony and Concert Orchestras. Lucy most enjoys playing in chamber ensembles and is a member of a string quartet and violin duet who perform regularly at events and concerts.

James Free

General musicianship & saxophone

James studied BA (Hons) Music in Anglia Polytechnic University, Cambridge and PTLLS teacher training also in Cambridge.

Since the mid-1980’s,James has performed extensively for a wide variety of entertainment agencies, artists and ensembles at festivals, theatres, clubs, hotels, holiday resorts, corporate functions, military bases and cruise lines through out UK, Europe and United States. Artists include Tom Robinson and venues include Glastonbury Festival.

With 20 years experience in teaching music, in the United States and with Essex Music Services, James specialises in saxophone, whole class music, concert preparation, clarinet, flute and guitar.

Ben Landymore

Music production

Ben Landymore is a passionate and exceptionally talented music producer, composer, recording engineer, trombonist and DJ. By incorporating his classical training and adventurous roots, he utilises the sounds of modern day life and nature with electronic production techniques to accentuate his unique creation of ambience. Proficient with the use of Logic Pro X, Pro Tools, Ableton Live 9, no software is a barrier to Ben’s creativity or speed of workflow. Boasting a discography of varying styles such as house, ambient, trip hop, new soul, hip hop, RnB, drum and bass, classical and electronic cinematic music, Ben has been invited to record with Aleksey Igudesman in Vienna, Austria and of course Lucy Landymore (sister). His most recent work has caught the attention of Universal Music Group, Inspected Records, UK Grime artist ‘KOJO Funds’ and Parker Ighile (Nicki Minaj, PDiddy, G-Eazy, Grace). With atmosphere playing an important role, his work has featured in the national tour of ‘Morecambe’ for which he was in charge of recording, mixing, editing, production and mastering; in Arts Council projects such as ‘Dancing in the Dales’ and most recently in ‘Embers’ a short horror film.

Ben has an impressive history of work in sound engineering, having assisted in the recording of the Holland Opera performing Puccini’s Madam Butterfly, with the installation of recording equipment in St John’s College, Cambridge, recording orchestras including the LPO, edited Dvorak Cello Concerto and installing a sound system in Truro Cathedral. Ben is also no stranger to operating a Yamaha M7 sound desk for the theatre production of Assassins at the ADC Theatre, Cambridge. Other duties included patching all the radio microphones and mixing the levels of the band and singers whilst following the script. Furthermore, he has operated the front of house sound for live function bands and the 78RPM Big Band, including extensive experience in location recording with About Sound ltd, Kettles Yard Cambridge and Codagan Hall London).

Adding to Ben Landymore’s exceptional versatility, he is also a classically trained trombonist. He studied at the Royal College of Music Junior Department, performing several times to thousands at the Royal Albert Hall, Ronnie Scotts and at the 606 Jazz Club. Regularly being invited to play for City of Cambridge Symphony Orchestra (CCSO) and Stoneleigh Youth Orchestra tours, Ben’s affability and ease of adapting to new environments makes him an invaluable member of any ensemble. In addition to his classical training he has proven his talents in brass ensembles such as Junior Prime Brass, Jazz and function bands including 78RPM big band, Superstition function band and countless theatre and cabaret pit bands.

Leon Haxby

Composition & general musicianship

Leon Haxby is a Composer, Bassoonist, DJ and teacher based in Cambridge. Leon has always been fascinated with the effect of quotation and re-contextualisation in music, and is now pursuing this field of study both in composition and through his groundbreaking research topic “Music’s Uncanny Valley”.

Leon began composition lessons with Darren Bloom at Forest School in London and was awarded a scholarship to the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, followed by a place at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam where he has just completed his Masters in Composition. In the past, he has studied under Richard Ayres, Wim Henderickx, Richard Causton, Edwin Roxburgh, Ed Bennett, Joe Cutler and Howard Skempton. He has also taken masterclasses from Rebecca Saunders, Mario Garuti, Anna Korsun and Colin Matthews.
Leon was the winner of the Orchestre Nouvelle Generation Composers Competition 2016/17, and the Birmingham Conservatoire Orchestral Composition Prize 2015. Distinguished ensembles and performers of his works include the DoelenKwartet, HERMESensemble, Syzygy Quartet, Ossian Ensemble, Noszferatu, Decibel, David Le Page, Patrick Johnson, Sara Minelli, Rowland Sutherland and Colin Alexander. His compositions have been featured at world-famous festivals including the String Quartet Biennale Amsterdam and TROMP Percussion Festival, and at venues such as Kings Place and Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, as well as various venues throughout Europe, North America and Africa.

In addition to classical composition, Leon immerses himself in a diverse range of musical styles. He composes advert soundtracks on a regular basis for clients such as GHD, Manolo Blahnik, Lanvin, Japanese Vogue, Mariana Jungman (London Fashion Week), Nowness.com and Cent Magazine. He has composed a number of film scores, including for award-winning short films ‘Wanted’ by Graeme Montgomery, and ‘Genesis’ by Beatrix Haxby.

As a bassoonist, Leon studied with Adam Mackenzie (New London Chamber Ensemble) and John Orford (London Sinfonietta) and has composed new repertoire for bassoon including a bassoon quartet and a number of concert studies. He is also an active DJ, playing eclectic sets from UK Bass to Jungle. He studied with international artists including Kasey Riot and Noah Priddle at the London Sound Academy and has performed in venues such as SET, Dalston alongside artists including Chiminyo and D’vo.

Alison Baillie

General Musicianship and flute

I regard Musicianship as an essential foundation for all students as they develop musically. This training combines the practical elements of music making with theoretical understanding. I enjoy teaching a mixture of composition, improvisation, aural skills, historical knowledge, analytical skills, creativity and theory in a small group context.  Central to this teaching is a sense of belonging and team work with an increase in confident, articulate musical thinking.

I currently teach the flute at SWCHS, Hills Road Sixth Form College and Saffron Centre for Young Musicians. I teach beginner piano in a local Primary School. I am a member of the Supporting Studies tutor team (General Musicianship) at Saffron Centre for Young Musicians and I am a tutor for Saffron Walden Children’s Orchestra. I also have a private teaching practice. I have worked in music education for 20 years with a strong emphasis on teaching the flute. I enjoy working with pupils of all standards and ages and, when appropriate, I prepare pupils for ABRSM, Trinity and MTB exams grades 1 to 8. In my teaching, I am committed to developing technique through clearly planned, thoughtful lessons where pupils are encouraged to expand their creative thinking.

I have a degree in music, a teaching diploma on the flute and a classroom teaching qualification. I recently studied as a postgraduate at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama where I was able to explore the complexities of how music is taught, learnt and performed. I have regular lessons with a professional solo player and these lessons are essential in my growth as a flautist, feeding and nourishing my own teaching. I remain committed to furthering my musical curiosity and I have attended recent workshops exploring rhythm with The Beat Goes On (Stomp style rhythm), the use of Music Therapy in education (inclusive use of music for self-expression) and a Posture course for flautists.

I lead an Outreach programme for Saffron Centre for Young Musicians where music is promoted in Primary schools. I have also run fun workshops in performance and composition for Primary schools and have worked with Academy pupils at SWCHS with a focus on delivering workshops for Primary pupils.

Music is central to my life. I believe everyone is musical and that communicating through music is part of being human. My role – and privilege – as a teacher is to help my pupils do this to the best of their ability.

Graham Instrall


Graham has been playing drums and percussion since he was at school and now keeps himself busy as a professional freelance musician. He has performed across Europe and America with many different orchestras and choirs, including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony Chorus, Chamber Orchestra of London and the English Pops Orchestra and with rock bands such as Electric Music and Boo Hooray. Graham has recorded for numerous artists and ensembles, including the RPO (Tring), Billy Mackenzie (Nude), Daniella Ganeva (Cala, GMN & Signum), David Le Page, Cantate Youth Choir, Hertfordshire Chorus (Meridien), Philip Sheppard (Bluesnow), Electric Music, David Bowie, The Supremes and Songs from a Random House (Sargasso).

Graham is also a composer, writing music for BBCTV and for a variety of other groups and artists and is the resident teacher of percussion at the Hockerill Anglo-European College in Bishop’s Stortford. Graham is currently assistant music director of the internationally acclaimed youth choir, Cantate.  Along with Nick Shaw and Charlie Penn, he led them to win two gold medals at the World Choir Games in Riga, 2014.

Felicity Hamilton

Voice and choirs

Felicity Hamilton is a lyric soprano and singing teacher based in Essex. She began her career gaining a place in the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain in 1999, and later becoming a member of their chamber choir, Laudibus. From 16, Felicity attended Birmingham Conservatoire Junior School, where she studied with Coral Gould and won the Frank Richards Memorial Prize for solo voice. Felicity then studied at the Royal Academy of Music, graduating with a first in her Final Singing Recital. She represented the Academy in her second year for the Junior Kathleen Ferrier Award.

Felicity has sung in concerts around the country and abroad, under conductors including Sir Charles Mackerras, as Frog in Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen, Royal Academy Opera, and Sir Colin Davis in Bach’s St Matthew Passion. Felicity has a special relationship with composer Christopher Meux who has written a number of pieces of music for her. Felicity premiered his cycle of Thomas Hardy songs both in Germany and in Nottingham, and in May 2009 she was delighted to create the lead role in his new operetta Mai 1849 in Prüm, Germany.

Felicity greatly enjoys her work as a singing teacher and conductor at Saffron Centre for Young Musicians, St Edmund’s Collage Ware, and Magna Carta Primary Academy, and is in demand as a teacher in other spheres. She is on the musical staff of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain and the Ulster Youth Choirs and is a Deputy teacher at The Royal College of Music Junior School. Felicity is very proud that many of her students have gained places in the National Youth Choirs, Conservatoires, postgraduate musical theatre courses and as music scholars at Oxbridge Universities.

Michael Iskas

Violin, viola and strings

Michael is an experienced and enthusiastic violin, viola and chamber music teacher and performer. He teaches at Saffron Centre for Young Musicians, Essex Music Hub and Greenwich Music School. He also coaches chamber music in the Primary and Academy courses of ProCorda in Suffolk. One of his main values is the duty to make music accessible to everyone and as a teacher he feels that we should pass to the next generations the knowledge which has been offered to us by the previous generations.

He performs as an orchestral musician with a number of orchestras such as City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra, English National Ballet, et al. He also performs regularly with various chamber music ensembles. Michael is also an Eastern-Mediterranean folk violin performer/improviser, playing and recording for more than two decades with many authentic local musicians in Greece and various bands in the multicultural music scene of London.

He is co-founder of Diphonon Duo (Viola&Accordion) along with the Spanish accordionist Iñigo Mikeleiz, appearing in many venues in the UK and abroad such as Wigmore Hall, St Martin in the Fields, Bristol Beacon etc. A number of compositions have been commissioned for the duo and recently they released their first CD which showcases this new music. One of the most valuable aspects of their musical activity, involves music within the community. They are partner musicians of Wigmore Hall Learning Department, Live Music Now and Concordia Foundation.

Michael has studied violin performance and education (BMus) in Greece (UoM) and in Vienna (MDW). After his BMus, he studied viola performance at the Royal Academy of Music with James Sleigh getting his Master of Arts and later at Trinity Laban with Roger Chase obtaining his PGAD. He also completed the LRAM diploma for violin and viola teaching at the Royal Academy of Music.

Among other important musicians, he has participated in masterclasses with Lawrence Power, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Garth Knox, Hartmut Rohde, Paul Silverthorne, Annette Isserlis and Richard Ireland.

He has been Scholar of the Royal Academy of Music, Athena Scholarship, Stavros Niarchos Foundation and the State Scholarships Foundation of Greece.

Matthew Drinkwater

Piano and accompanist

Born in Oxford, Matthew started music lessons at an early age learning Piano, Violin and Trumpet. Gravitating naturally to the Piano, he went on to gain his Bachelors degree studying with Richard Ormrod at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, and Masters degree at the Royal College of Music with Leon McCawley, where he was a multiple prize winner and the recipient of the Chappell Medal. Professionally he has had invaluable guidance and mentoring from Nelly Ben-Or, Charlotte Tomlinson, Polina Leschenko and Graham Fitch.

Matthew has performed extensively as a soloist and collaborator across the UK and abroad, most recently at Edinburgh Festival, the BBC Proms, London’s Southbank Centre, Barbican Centre, Buckingham Palace, St. George’s Hannover Square and St. John’s Smith Square, Portsmouth Music Club, Chipping Campden and Witney music Festivals, Conservatoire de Toulouse and Concerts in the West. Recently he has performed with London Contemporary Orchestra for live performances of Johnny Greenwood’s soundtrack to “Phantom Thread” and at the BBC Proms. Chamber music and accompaniment are a central part of his performing career, working with the Poznansky Trio, cellists Willard Carter and Sebastian Poznansky, and baritones Theo Platt and Paul Vialard to name a few. He has also had performances broadcast on BBC Radio 3, Classic FM and ITV television.

Matthew lives in London, and is also a piano teacher at Headington School in Oxford. He is a keen potter, enjoys cooking and the gym, and loves to read – especially the novels of P G Wodehouse.

Mark Fielding

Piano and accompanist

Mark Fielding studied the piano with Allan Schiller and composition with Robert Saxton at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.   After gaining his AGSM Diploma, he won a scholarship to study on the Post-Diploma Accompaniment course. He also won the School Composition Prize and the Jenny Hyman Prize for outstanding chamber music playing.

Mark taught piano at the Junior Guildhall since 2005 and teaches at The Perse School, Cambridge, and was a regular examiner at Leeds College of Music for five years. Many of his students have gained success in exams and auditions for entry to music colleges and reached the final round in major competitions such as BBC Young Musician of the year and the Rachmaninoff International competition in Russia and the Tchaikovsky competition.

As a performer, Mark has played in most European countries and the US, Brazil, Mexico and Singapore.   Performances in London have included several appearances in the Purcell Room and St. Martin-in-the-Fields.   He made many broadcasts on radio three and Classic FM. He also made several CD recordings, notably the complete works of Szymanowski for violin and piano with the violinist Detlef Hahn.   Mark has mainly specialised in chamber music and has been a member of the Mühlfeld Trio, Camerada and ‘The Ensemble of Madrid’.  He has also been an accompanist and performer on music courses such as Dartington International Summer School since 1991 and the Mozarteum Summer Academy working with Ruggiero Ricci.   He is interested in playing for cello as his sister Hilary is a professional cellist. This interest resulted in accompanying masterclasses and lessons with William Pleeth, Steven Isserlis, Maurice Gendron, Ralph Kirshbaum and Karine Georgian.

He has composed a series of books for children called ‘Allstyles’. Saxtetpublications have published his saxophone and clarinet pieces and quartets, and most recently, some of his pieces have been included in the ABRSM graded publications.

Daniel Phillips

Conductor, Symphony Orchestra

Daniel Phillips is a Supervisor in the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge, where he is currently studying for a PhD in Musicology. An aspiring cultural historian and music studies scholar, his research focuses on the cultural history of musical time in Germany and France during the Long Nineteenth Century. From an academic background in philosophical aesthetics, intellectual history and musical analysis, Dan’s doctoral thesis develops a theory to describe how figural representations of non-linear time phenomena coordinated the war of ideas between Positivism and Vitalism in the musical diaspora of Paris from 1884–1926.

Beyond academic life, Dan works as a professional violinist, violist, and conductor, primarily in the field of documentary film. Since his professional engagement to record solo and ensemble strings to film at the age of 14—for the Emmy-nominated soundtrack to The Battle for Marjah (HBO 2012)—Dan’s playing has been featured on a range of documentaries focusing on the pressing social and political issues of our time, from The Detectives: Murder on the Streets (BBC 2017, BAFTA-Winning TV Series), Grenfell (BBC 2018, BAFTA-Winning Film), War in the Blood (BBC 2019, BAFTA-Nominated Soundtrack), The Surgeon’s Cut (BBC / Netflix 2020), and Nail Bomber: Manhunt (Netflix, 2021), to name but a few. Having recently recorded solo and orchestral strings for forthcoming documentaries due to be released by Netflix, Disney Studios, and the BBC, Dan’s playing was recently featured on Miner’s Strike 1984: The Battle for Britain (Channel 4, 2024), Investigating Diana: Death in Paris (Channel 4 2023) and the BAFTA-nominated score for the BBC docuseries House of Maxwell (BBC2, 2022).

Dan also works as a private tutor in an unusually wide range of academic and musical disciplines. Currently, he works as a Conducting Tutor, Chamber Music Coach and Violin/Viola Teacher at the Centre for Music Performance at the University of Cambridge, Hill’s Road Sixth Form College, and Saffron Walden Centre for Young Musicians. With nine years of teaching experience, Dan also works as a private tutor. He teaches Music, History, English Literature and Language, Philosophy, Classical Civilisation, Formal Logic, Writing, Essay and Dissertation Skills, as well as and practical musicianship training in Violin, Viola, and Orchestral Conducting. He has taught all of these subjects to a range of ages of abilities, spanning novices and undergraduates.

Whilst preparing for his diploma examination in violin performance aged 17 as a student of Andy Sherwood of Trinity Laban Conservatoire, Dan started to teach violin and viola to a variety of students, ranging from children and adults beginning their studies, to more advanced performers looking to improve their technical facility and performance skills in their diploma or degree examinations. He continued this line of work as an undergraduate studying Music at the University of Manchester, and violin with Julia Hanson and Sophie Rosa of the Royal Northern College of Music. His approach to performing and teaching violin and viola derive from Ivan Galamian, the premiere violin pedagogue of the twentieth century, and the teacher of principles handed down in a lineage to the mentors from whom Dan learnt at the RNCM.


All staff at SCYM are DBS checked (enhanced) and undergo safeguarding training biannually, inline with government guidance. We also follow Safer Recruitment guidelines when appointing staff. We take very seriously the welfare of our students on a Saturday and follow Essex Music Services Safeguarding Policy and Procedures. Please see ‘Policies’ for this in detail, as well as the Keeping Children Safe in Education 2022 guidance.

All parties are responsible in maintaining the safety of young people. Should any concerns arise they should be reported immediately to the Centre  staff either in person, or via the following email addresses:

Kate.Llewellyn@essex.gov.uk Kate Llewellyn, Designated Safeguarding Lead for Saffron Centre for Young Musicians

Sophie.Stafford@essex.gov.uk Sophie Stafford, Deputy Safeguarding Lead for Saffron Centre for Young Musicians

John.Hutchings@essex.gov.uk John Hutchings, Designated Safeguarding Lead for Essex Music Service

Peter.Lovell@essex.gov.uk Peter Lovell, Deputy Safeguarding Lead for Essex Music Service

All Pastoral staff are trained in first aid, and if there are any individual medical needs we should know about to provide care for any attending young person, please inform us of this at the point of enrolment.

Safeguarding and Conduct Policy part 1 2023.24