biography - cellist, cello teacher, author, course designer

Student at the Royal College of Music

Catherine studied at the Royal College of Music in London where her cello teachers were Christopher Bunting and Eileen Croxford.

She graduated in 1983 with a GRSM and an ARCM Teachers Diploma.

Cellist: cabaret, group & solo

On leaving college Catherine's portrait Catherine worked as a freelance orchestral player and was a member of the cabaret trio Premier Cru with Sue Casson (voice and piano) and Chris Brannick (percussion). The group played a mixture of original songs and jazz greats. After appearing on a live broadcast from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival on Round Midnight, they recorded regularly as featured artists for Radio 2. They went on to perform at the SBC and Ronnie Scotts.

In 1992 Catherine recorded the solo cello music for the award-winning comedy show Withering Looks for the theatre group Lipservice.

She then played with Instrumental, a six-piece string group performing ambient dance music acoustically. Their repertoire included cult music by Orb, Sabres of Paradise, Brian Eno and others. They appeared at The Big Chill and The Electric Party in the Park. The group made a remix for the Orb of their album single, Oxbow Lakes (Island Records). Instrumental then appeared with them at The Forum in London as part of the bands European tour. Afterwards the group were featured artists on Radio 3's Mixing It. Instrumental joined The Orchestra of the Angel of the Odd in two silent film improvisations at the Hampstead Cinema. The two seminal films were Lulu and Metroplolis and the performances were broadcast live on the net.

The ensemble also took part in Women Take Centre Stage at the Purcell Room broadcast on Radio 3. In the programme featuring women composers, Instrumental performed Blue For You by Shirley Thompson dedicated to the memory of the murdered black teenager Stephen Lawrence.

Under the name Without Frontiers, the group worked as a backing string section, and played on albums for D-Note, Outside and Jhelisa.

As a session musician Catherine also performed live and on television with Divine Comedy, Edwyn Collins, Gabrielle, Let Loose, Boyzone, Roxette, Demis Roussoss and others.

In 2006 Catherine founded String Theory Cello Ensemble a four-part group dedicated to bringing a fresh perspective to both old and new music with a rich ambient sound. In April 2006 they premiered 'Walking and Talking' by Dirk Campbell - a dance piece commissioned by Paddock Productions. Written for four celli and two marimbas and choreographed by Virginia Farman, it was performed in a skate park as part of a day of dance called Something to Dance About.

The ensemble went on to perform Through Coloured glass a meditative programme that threaded together sacred and secular music from the Renaissance and Baroque eras. The music traced a journey from the cares of the world to a still point at its centre. From there the listener is lead to meet the world refreshed. The meditation was performed in London, Amberley, Hampshire and Brighton and was lit by Clare O'Donaghue who lights opera, theatre and dance. We performed a short and long meditation, depending on the time of day. Through Coloured Glass was more of an event than a typical concert and acted as a mediation for the player and listener alike. The ensemble ended in 2009.

Catherine and JuliaIn 2013 Catherine co-founded the Baroque & Roll String Orchestra with the wonderful violinist, Julia Bishop of Red Priest.

Teacher and author

Teaching has always been a constant throughout. For many years Catherine taught on behalf of the Centre for Young Musicians in London. She is a deputy at the junior departments of Trinity College of Music and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London. She was an associate lecturer at Chichester University in 2014 and 2015.

Catherine worked as cello coach for the adult learners string orchestra Strings at St Martins, The Chamber Orchestra at Conway Hall and Battersea Young Strings.

In 1996 the first volume of Time Pieces for cello was published by ABRSM and volumes two and three followed the following year. She is currently developing courses and writing other books for cellists.

Catherine is a member of the Incorporated Society of Musicians [ISM], a member of the European String Teachers Association [ESTA] and is CRB checked by Trinity College of Music

Catherine's books - links & reviews

Time Pieces [volume 1, volume 2 & volume 3], are available thru the ABRSM website. These links will take you to the right pages where you can find out more and buy them on-line!

Here are some comments by fellow professionals:

" is a marvellous vehicle for teaching different styles... This is a very good buy." Music Teacher

" a valuable and welcome addition to the repertoire" ESTA: News and Views

" these publications are invaluable" Music teacher

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