Official Accompanists TBC
previous years Adjudicators....
Sally studied the piano and ‘cello at the Royal College of Music then took a post-graduate répétiteur’s course at The London Opera Centre. She worked in London for many years as an accompanist and coach and played for several opera groups and large choirs as well as regularly accompanying singing master classes. She also played harpsichord continuo for many different choral societies.
She was a founder member of the Helios Orchestra in London and appeared with them in many concerts including the Purcell Room at the South Bank. She has also performed piano concertos with the Dinas Powys Orchestra including Beethoven’s Triple Concerto.
Emma was born in Barry where she received tuition in piano, violin and voice. In 1999 she moved to London to study for a four year music degree at Trinity College of Music. During her studies she gave recitals both as a soloist and as part of ensembles in various locations in and around London, these included a College production of Stephen Sondheim’s ‘A Little Night Music’ and ‘The Philip Lawrence Awards’, a Home Office event staged in London’s West End and presented by Sir Trevor McDonald. Upon completion of her degree Emma moved back to Barry to pursue a busy career in music. She is the accompanist for Barry Male Voice Choir and is Musical Director for BillBoard Ensemble Theatre Company and also for Barry Community Choir (formerly Barry Choral Society). She runs her own private teaching practice and also works as a peripatetic teacher in Cardiff and Vale schools for the music education service CAVMS. She is also a busy working mother, having welcomed her first child in 2014!
Our 2017 Officials were:-
Sally now lives in Llantwit Major and works as an accompanist and teacher as well as performing with her violinist husband and professional colleagues. They have played in Brecon, North Wales and Norfolk and often give concerts in the Cardiff area. They have recently been joined in concerts by their young son who is a talented ‘cellist.
Sally was accompanist for the Cowbridge Amateur Operatic Society for nine years and was musical director for their performance of “Yeoman of the Guard”.
She is the accompanist for the 90 strong Cardiff Bach Choir and plays continuo in their concerts. She is also one of the official accompanists for ‘Music in the Vale’. She gives piano lessons at the Cathedral School, Llandaff and has an extensive private teaching practice.
Siân studied at Leeds University where she won the accompanist prize. She subsequently studied at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Cardiff, specialising in piano accompaniment and won the Friends of RWCMD [Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama] prize.
In 1993 Sian became the accompanist for the South Wales Male Choir, Côr Meibion De Cymru, and has performed with them at the Sydney Opera House and on tours in Canada, USA, Germany, France, Scandinavia, Hungary, Poland and Spain. She also toured Russia and the Ukraine with the Richard Williams Singers. She has been the guest accompanist for the Association of Welsh Male Voice Choirs at the Royal Albert Hall and at the Wales Festival of Remembrance at St David's Hall, Cardiff.
Siân has accompanied leading Welsh artists such as Gwyn Hughes Jones, Rebecca Evans, Shân Cothi, Charlotte Church and Rhys Meirion in concert. She has also accompanied Rebecca Evans and Stuart Burrows in recital and accompanied masterclasses given by Stephen isserlis, Julian Lloyd Webber, Jac von Steen and Emmanuel Siffert.
Siân has arranged several pieces for brass band and male voice choirs. She is presently a member of staff at the Wales International Academy of Voice, accompanying the Saturday academy directed by Patricia O'Neill.
Rhiannon Pritchard: graduated from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in 2009. She has already had many solo, accompanying, repetiteuring and chamber group opportunities, taking part in many recitals, concerts and masterclasses. She was awarded the Seligman Award for her work as a repetiteur and vocal coach with Welsh National Youth Opera in 2008, adding to the RWCMD Mansel Thomas prize and Accompanist Prize. More recently, she won Gwobr Goffa Eleri Evans, the accompanist prize at the National Eisteddfod 2010 in Ebbw Vale, and she and Richard Vaughan also won the Instrumental Duet competition at the same Eisteddfod
Rhiannon was accepted for the late Yehudi Menuhin’s musician scheme, Live Music Now, in 2009, and performs all over the country. Other accompanying roles include the Urdd Eisteddfod Opening Concert, the Bryn Terfel Scholarship in 2011, 2012 and 2013, Cyfle Cothi and Llais i Gymru for S4C and Radio Cymru. Her choral accompanying roles include CF1, Cardiff Blues Choir, City Voices Cardiff and Morriston RFC Male Voice Choir and she has travelled to South Africa, America, Canada, Spain and Italy
James Walker: attended the Purcell specialist music school from 1964-1969 and then went on to study at the Royal Academy of Music where his tutors were Emanuel Hurwitz (violin), Gwynne Edwards (viola) and Richard Stoker (composition).
At the Royal Academy, James was awarded the Recital Diploma and Alfred Gibson prize for viola playing and the Edward Hecht and Josiah Parker prizes for composition. He also received a scholarship from the Vaughan Williams Trust.
A career as a musician followed with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, Academy of St Martin in the Fields and the London Mozart Players. James was also a member of the Quartet in Residence at Sussex University from 1975-1978. Over a period of fourteen years he gave regular broadcasts for the BBC, ATV and Central Television.
In addition to a career as a performer, James has shared his enthusiasm for music with many young people and from 1982-1990 was Principal Teacher (viola), Senior Teacher and Vice-Principal (strings) at the Leicestershire School of Music.
In 1993 he joined the staff at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama as Head of the Performers Course, later to become founding hear of Junior Music and Access Studies (JMAS), a post he held from 1995 to 1999. He was also a member of the College’s Music Executive, Academic Board and was Staff Governor. His work with JMAS is perhaps of particular note as he leaves behind him a flourishing department whose numbers have trebled in recent times with more than 150 young people studying, on Saturday, in a specialist conservatoire environment.
In 1999 James was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and in 2008 he was made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music.
Helen Knight was born in Ashford , Kent and after initial tutelage from Janice Chapman graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music where she studied with Nicholas Powell. She began her professional career at Glyndebourne Festival Opera before joining Welsh National Opera, where she has performed many roles, including Olga, Eugene Onegin and Flora in La Traviata. On the concert platform , Helen has given numerous recitals both in the UK and across Europe. As well as teaching at Cardiff University and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama Helen is a member of the examining panel of the Associated Board of the Royal,Schools of Music and works both at home and internationally. She is also a member of the Board's Professional Development Panel.
Owen Webb was brought up in Pontlliw, Swansea and studied at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. While at College he won the Mocsa Young Welsh Singer of the Year Competition and was a finalist in both the Welsh Singers competition and the National Mozart Singing Competition. After graduating he joined the the WNO Chorus, where roles include Harlekin Ariadne auf Naxos, Dancaïre Carmen, Schaunard La bohème and Marullo Rigoletto. Elsewhere roles include Papageno The Magic Flute, Figaro The Marriage of Figaro and Malatesta Don Pasquale. Concert performances include Vaughan Williams’s Sea Symphony at The Bridgewater Hall, Messiah at The Royal Festival Hall and an opera gala at Buckingham Palace. Owen enjoys running and has completed several half marathons and one ultra marathon of 46 miles in the Brecon Beacons raising money for Marie Curie, The British Lung Foundation and Touch Trust. Future engagements include performances with the Scarborough Spa Orchestra.
Horn player David Shillaw is a native of Sunderland and began his musical career as a chorister, being at times a member of the choirs of Truro Cathedral and Westminster Abbey. He read music at the University of Exeter followed by post graduate study at the Royal Academy of Music where he was a pupil of Ifor James. After leaving the Academy he joined the Academy of the BBC based in Bristol and then, in 1977, joined the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera. David has recently retired from WNO after thirty eight years as member of the orchestra. David joined the staff of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in 1984 transferring to the Junior Conservatoire of the college when the junior department was established in 1997. He retired from that position in July 2017.
David was appointed as a magistrate in 1993 and is also the Teasurer of RNLI Porthcawl.