I’m the only person in my family to pursue a music career, but growing up, we constantly had music playing, and I owe much of my tastes in pop and rock music to this. Even in our old home videos, at almost all times you’ll hear artists like R.E.M., Elvis Costello, Counting Crows or Travis playing in the background. I was lucky enough to have violin lessons at my primary school from age 8, and I had started piano lessons the year before. However, for much of my time at school, I was most passionate about the electric guitar, which I started when I was 11. I taught myself to play my favourite songs, and between about 15 and 18 I was in a punk band that played a lot of the smaller Glasgow venues and made some recordings. I was also playing in the local youth orchestras, and I loved going for summer residentials. At that point, my favourite thing about music was bonding over something creative and emotionally involving with friends, but I wasn’t thinking too seriously about it as a career path. This changed when, after a year of studying Physics and Music at university (aiming to do something involving their combination), I realised I was always most passionate about the music I was involved in, and that I could either spend a lot of time practising maths or the violin. I picked the latter, transferred to a music degree and dedicated myself to performing.

Whilst studying music at university, alongside my studies I was able to take part in student-run orchestras, chamber groups, musicals, operas and plays, and I even became President of the University String Orchestra. I also worked with the Nevis Ensemble for most of this time, bringing music to public and community spaces all around Scotland. A big moment for me was my discovery of historically informed performance, which opened up a whole new world of ideas combining my academic and practical interests. I’ve since studied baroque and modern violin side-by-side (both at Edinburgh, and the RNCM for my Masters), and believe there is so much that we can all learn from the musicians of the past about improvisation, dance, the meanings of expressivity and our roles as performers. This being said, I love playing as wide a variety of music, old and new, as possible!