Jan Gould studied viola at Trinity College of Music with Elizabeth Turnbull and Nicholas Roth, wining prizes both for solo performance and chamber music. She was a member of the Miklòs Quartet, and with them performed extensively in London and throughout the Provinces. Surgery brought her performing career to an abrupt end, and she then went on to train for ordination in the Church of England. She moved to Wales in 2004 and for most of that time has been priest in charge at the Church of the Resurrection, Ely, Cardiff. She set up the Making Music Changing Lives charity in 2009 out of the belief that music has the power to transform even the poorest communities, and is currently its musical director while still fulfilling her normal parish duties. In 2013 she was awarded the Community Foundation in Wales Philanthropy Award; in 2014 she and MMCL were the subject of a BBC Radio Wales programme which won a Jerusalem Trust Award for the best Easter programme in the UK; in 2015 she received a Point of Light Award from the Prime minister and also appeared on the Independent on Sunday 100 Happy List for her transformational work in the community.
Born in Cardiff, James graduated from the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London with first class honours. He studied recorders with Ian Wilson, Pamela Thorby and Robert Ehrlich and historical clarinets with Jane Booth. In addition he studied at the Escola Superior de Música de
Catalunya, Barcelona, studying with Pedro Memelsdorff and Lorenzo Coppola.
His repertoire spans the music of Ciconia to Stockhausen and recent highlights have included performances of Berio’s Gesti in London and Aberdeen, a Graupner triple chalumeaux concerto in
London and the Mozart clarinet quintet on period instruments at the Abbaye aux Dames, Saintes as part of the Jeune Orchestre Atlantique. In addition to performing with the JOA he performs with such groups as WoodWork, Espirales, Ensemble DeNOTE and Concerto Cymru.
He teaches at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, Godolphin & Latymer and St Paul’s Girls’ School, London.
Music has always been significant in Cathy’s life: after playing in orchestras and singing in choirs at school and church, she spent 4 years at Dartington College of Arts, where she studied singing, flute, piano and composition, as well as jazz, folk and Indian music. She graduated in English & Music from Exeter University, then taught music in a Secondary school in London, where she set up a choir and a brass band (and took up the tuba!)
She changed tack to teach English & Communications at Secondary, FE and HE level in Cambridge, where she sang with Collegium Laureatum and the University Operatic Society. After studying for her Masters in Graphic Design in Manchester, she came to Cardiff to set up Media Education Wales, running media courses and events for teachers and students throughout Wales from their base at Chapter Arts. She was also one of the original Board members of Community Music Wales.
Before retiring in 2011, Cathy spent 12 years in education publishing at UWIC, setting up UWIC Press to produce a range of curriculum resources. She is now a member of Soroptimist International, a women’s service organisation, and is a founder trustee of a small charity working with families in The Gambia, which she visits regularly.
As a young person Cathy was given amazing opportunities to hear and make music: supporting MMCL in whatever way she can means returning to her own roots and enabling other children to have the chance to enrich their lives through music.
Christopher studied at the Royal College of Music under Kerry Camden. He achieved the highest college grade, and won the Arthur Somerville Bassoon Prize. He gained his ARCM in bassoon and ARCM (teaching diploma) in piano. He is currently sub-principal bassoon doubling contrabassoon at Welsh National Opera. Previous to this he was principal bassoon with the New Sadler’s Wells Opera, and also principal bassoon for Orchestral Services, involving work with the Cuban, Australian and Houston Ballet Companies.
He has played contra bassoon for the Sadlers Wells Royal Ballet and plays with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of St Johns Smith Square, and has recently been working for S4C film music and BBC Radio 4.
Christopher teaches bassoon and piano at the Cathedral School Llandaff, as well as working at the Royal Welsh College of music and drama as Contra bassoon Tutor. He has been Acting Head of the Junior Music and Access Studies at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and now works on outreach projects at the college as well as being a Youth & Community project co-ordinator for Welsh National Opera.
Meirion Morgan was born and raised in the heart of the Cynon Valley (Aberdare) and read Mathematics at the universities of Cardiff and Oxford. His commercial experience of mathematics, technology and finance spans over two decades, including over a decade in the City of London where he performed a variety of quantitative roles at UBS, Rabobank, London Clearing House, RBS and Lloyds Banking Group. Now living in Cardiff, Meirion is on the management board of Gorwel, an independent, non-partisan think tank. He is also an active trustee of four charities, providing strategic direction, financial management input and IT support. Outside of these roles, Meirion’s interests include choral music and red wine.
Rhian Hutchings is Creative Director of Operasonic, and Partnership Manager for ArtWorks Cymru. She has been working in opera for the last fifteen years and her career choices have been led by her passion for new opera and participatory work.
Her early career had a focus on directing, and she worked with a wide range of companies. In 2006 she joined Welsh National Opera, and was Youth & Community Director from 2007 – 2014, commissioning nine major operatic pieces for young people and communities, and developing the Street Songs programme with Welsh communities.
In her role for ArtWorks Cymru, she is working with a consortium of 26 partners over two years to develop practice in participatory settings, seed new practice and grow a strong network around the participatory arts in Wales.
Her company, Operasonic, enables young people to engage with opera, as audiences, as participants, as creators, as leaders, and creates opportunities for them to explore, create and experience opera.
She is also a Creative Agent for the Arts Council Wales Creative Learning Through the Arts project, an active member of RESEO and a Fellow of the RSA.
Sophie was born in Leicester in 1989 and began studying the violin at the age of 6 when her family had settled in Thetford, Norfolk. After achieving Grade 8 violin, she began studying at the junior department of the Royal Academy of Music, London. She was given a viola scholarship, with the violin as a second study. Loving the warmth and tone of the instrument, the viola has been the height of Sophie’s interest ever since. During her time at the Royal Academy she studied the viola with Robert Turrell and also undertook piano and vocal tuition in her spare time. In 2009, Sophie began a degree in music at Bangor University, North Wales. During these years she travelled to Liverpool for her lessons with Richard Wallace. Sophie was principal viola of the Bangor University Symphony Orchestra and Bangor Baroque ensemble in her final year, also playing as part of the Menai String Quartet. Since graduating in July 2012 and receiving a BMus (Hons), she then began a Master’s in Performance at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. During her two years there, Sophie studied with Mark Braithwaite and Louise Williams. She currently plays on an instrument made by Paul Collins (2004). Having played a variety of repertoire, both solo and orchestral, Sophie has also performed at venues such as the Queen Elizabeth Hall and St John’s Smith Square London, Birmingham NEC and St David’s Hall Cardiff. Her interests also extend to Celtic folk music, regularly taking part in sessions within England and Ireland, as well as playing in a traditional folk ensemble.
Kate Hawkins graduated from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in July 2014 with a bachelors degree in Trumpet performance. Currently based in Cardiff, she works as a private brass teacher, as well as being a teacher for Monkey Music, providing pre-school music classes. Throughout her studies Kate has had a big interest in musical education and outreach, and alongside other projects began volunteering with Making Music Changing Lives in 2010, and has been attending ever since! She took over as brass teacher in 2012 and has enjoyed watching the children progress on their instruments through the years. Kate is looking forward to seeing what the future holds for MMCL and to see more and more children benefit from the project.
Rachael has been playing the violin since the age of 9 through her local music service in the North East of England. In 2007 she was awarded a scholarship to study at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and subsequently went on to complete her Master’s degree in Music.
As a freelance violinist Rachael performs with many professional orchestras including BBC National Orchestra of Wales and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.
Rachael volunteered for making music changing lives in her final year of music college and was delighted to take up the position as a violin teacher in 2013.
Jan Gould studied viola at Trinity College of Music with Elizabeth Turnbull and Nicholas Roth, wining prizes both for solo performance and chamber music. She was a member of the Miklòs Quartet, and with them performed extensively in London and throughout the Provinces. Surgery brought her performing career to an abrupt end, and she then went on to train for ordination in the Church of England. She moved to Wales in 2004 and for most of that time has been priest in charge at the Church of the Resurrection, Ely, Cardiff. She set up the Making Music Changing Lives charity in 2009 out of the belief that music has the power to transform even the poorest communities, and is currently its musical director while still fulfilling her normal parish duties. In 2013 she was awarded the Community Foundation in Wales Philanthropy Award; in 2014 she and MMCL were the subject of a BBC Radio Wales programme which won a Jerusalem Trust Award for the best Easter programme in the UK; in 2015 she received a Point of Light Award from the Prime minister and also appeared on the Independent on Sunday 100 Happy List for her transformational work in the community. In 2016 she was the British Empire Medal for Services to the Community.
Jordan is a recent graduate of the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, and alongside being passionate about teaching he’s also a performer of Welsh traditional music and the classical repertoire.
In 2009, Helen gained a scholarship to study trumpet at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. Whilst there, she studied with principal trumpet of WNO, Dean Wright. She partook in masterclasses with Sergei Nakariakov, Phil Cobb, Niall Keatley, Andy Crowley, Mike Lovatt, Alistair Mackie, and Mnozil Brass. She was also lucky to be involved with various RWCMD/WNO side by side projects.
Since graduating from RWCMD in 2013 with First Class Honours, Helen has been working as a freelance trumpeter and teacher in South Wales.