2024 Festival Adjudicators
Iona was born in Liverpool and began playing the violin under teacher Peter Mountain. She was a pupil at Chethams and Wells Cathedral school before going to the Royal Academy of Music to study violin with Molly Mack and Ralph Holmes and where she also studied the harpsichord. After a career in playing she diverted into a career in social work and probation, qualifying and working in various settings. Studying violin with Howard Davis during this time, Iona reverted to a career in music, becoming a Head of Strings for Oakham, Guernsey Music Service, Birkdale and Kimbolton schools as well as later a head of music. She became a coach for the National Childrens Orchestra.
Her Fiddlefingers project in Sheffield, offering tuition in violin and cello for local five year olds, won through twice to the finals in the Music for Youth competition festival. Iona was trained by Sheila Nelson in the teaching of technique to young children whilst making it fun.
She has recently become a textile weaver and felter, exhibiting at a gallery and becoming addicted to wool.
Iona is an examiner for Trinity College and offers training for primary music teachers in using Kodaly and eurythmics as well as string workshops for violin/viola teachers in establishing good technique from the start. Home once more is Liverpool.
With interests encompassing period performance to the newest music, Alexander Rider freelances with major ensembles throughout the United Kingdom. These include the BBC Concert, Philharmonic and Scottish Symphony Orchestras, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the London Sinfonietta, London Chamber Orchestra, English Touring Opera, Brighton Philharmonic, Chroma and (on original instruments) the Gabrieli Consort and the Academy of Ancient Music.
As a soloist, Alexander is noted for his affinity with French music at the turn of the last century, and for his work on original instruments of the period. Using an Erard harp built in 1902, Alexander has made painstaking research into the époque and given numerous lectures and recitals to great acclaim. He has lectured at the World Harp Congress in Cardiff, for the Franz Liszt Academy of Music (Budapest), The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and the Harp on Wight Festival and is now a visiting guest tutor at the Royal Academy of Music. He is delighted to have recorded ‘Fresque Marine’ , a disc of French works for the Willowhayne Records
Bands and Orchestras
TIMOTHY BARRATT studied on a Scholarship at the Royal Academy of Music, winning many major awards, and completed his studies with Vlado Perlemuter in Paris and Geoffrey Parsons. He has toured and broadcast extensively in the UK and abroad as soloist, accompanist and chamber music player. Whilst still a student he developed a special interest in song accompaniment through playing for Masterclasses at Aldeburgh, subsequently partnering such artists as Dame Felicity Lott and Robert White. Teaching forms a major part of his musical life and he works with pupils of all ages and levels from beginner to post-graduate. He was Head of Keyboard at Dulwich College for almost 25 years whilst also teaching at the RAM and TCM and now pursues a busy freelance career.
An ABRSM examiner since 1991, he is also a Trainer, Moderator and Mentor. Other work for the AB includes selecting the graded Piano pieces and presenting Seminars. He frequently directs Masterclasses for performers and teachers’ workshops in the UK and Far East and is in demand as a Competition and Festival adjudicator.
Eva Maria is an international pianist whose dramatic and colourful interpretations have earned her high acclaim. She enjoys a busy teaching and performing schedule which takes her round the world. She has appeared on BBC and Polish television and radio. A keen interest in contemporary music, she has worked with two of the 20th Century’s finest composers, Gorecki and Per Norgard. Eva is passionate about chamber music and enjoys giving masterclasses and workshops. She mentors for Young Talents and has been teaching at the Royal Academy Junior Department since 2001. She has enjoys a varied life as soloist, chamber musician and accompanist and has performed at The Royal Opera House, St Martins in the Fields, Tivoli , Copenhagen and at the Buszko – Zroj Summer festival. She won a scholarship to study with Professor Jasinski at the Katowice Szymanowski Academy in Poland, also studying in Amsterdam, Holland and a travel bursary for Soloist Class in Copenhagen. She won a scholarship for her undergraduate studies at the Royal Northern where she completed both undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. Alongside her performing, teaching and adjudication work, Eva Maria has worked closely with Alexander Technique for the last 15 years and is a freelance music journalist for International Piano.
Primary Music Makers and Primary Choral
Mark is a concert pianist, composer, writer and teacher, who has premièred, recorded and broadcast many works by prominent British composers. He has published 75 volumes of compositions and editions for Edition Peters, Faber Music, Spartan Press and Europa Edition. 50 of his pieces have been selected for the exam syllabuses of ABRSM, TCL and LCM. He has various pieces within the popular ABRSM series, Piano Star, and co-authored ABRSM’s Teaching Notes for the previous piano syllabus. His book, The Mindful Pianist, is published by Faber, translated into Chinese along with 2 co-authored books called The Advanced Pianist and 2 volumes of piano repertoire pieces entitled Teachers’ Choice. Also published by Faber, is The Piano in Black and White, an in-depth guide for the adult learner and returner. His book, Mindfulness in Music, is published by Leaping Hare Press in English and Spanish, and Mindfulness in Sound was published in 2020.
Mark’s PhD featured Liszt, a topic on which he has published articles in the UK and USA, and he has written hundreds of reviews for the prominent musical press, including International Record Review, Classical Music, Piano Professional, Musical Opinion and International Piano. He has written over 50 Masterclass articles for Pianist Magazine.
Mark has given 300 recitals on cruise ships and appeared in the UK’s top venues, including five appearances at the Wigmore Hall, Purcell Room and St John’s Smith Square. He has performed on BBC Radio 3 and Classic FM. Mark is an ABRSM examiner for grades and diplomas, also a reviewer, trainer and international coordinator, having undertaken 47 tours to all continents. Mark was a piano judge for the 2019 BBC Young Musician Competition. He teaches and has given masterclasses in the UK, China and Hong Kong.
Elizabeth began singing at an early age in her local Methodist Church, and soon started to attend singing lessons with Betty Middleton, who encouraged her to perform in many concerts and music festivals in the Northeast of England with great success. She then gained a scholarship to study at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, graduating in 1975, where she won several prizes and scholarships for further study.
Elizabeth’s performing career took her all over the United Kingdom and Europe, but with the arrival of her family she decided to concentrate on her teaching career, teaching for Coventry Performing Arts and Oxfordshire County Music Service, as well as public schools in Oxfordshire; she currently teaches at two public schools in Oxford itself, running two successful choirs and with pupils successfully auditioning for RADA, Arts Education at Tring, Birmingham University and Guildford School of Acting. Past students have also successfully auditioned for New College and Lichfield Cathedral choirs.
Elizabeth is a firm believer in the value of performing in music festivals, and encourages her own students to follow her example in doing so; she feels that it is the ideal way to hone performance skills in a warm and friendly environment.
After studies at Oxford University and the Royal College of Music, Luise performed extensively as a Soprano Soloist throughout the UK, Europe, America and South Africa. While specialising mainly in Oratorio, she also gave many Song Recitals and appeared on the opera stage at Buxton Opera House. She made several recordings and her BBC broadcasts included performances of Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Creation and works by Goehr.
Luise has held teaching positions in both the Junior and Senior departments of the Birmingham Conservatoire and as a visiting lecturer at Birmingham University. She is now the singing teacher for the undergraduate and postgraduate student choral scholars at Keble College, Oxford and also runs an extensive private teaching practice. She has coached and conducted the Wyre Forest Young Voices Choir and is regularly asked to give Master classes, choral workshops and presentations both at home and abroad.
As Associate Chief Examiner in Music for Trinity College London, Luise travelled extensively and worked on all aspects of the exam portfolio. Now, as a freelance consultant, she continues to have special responsibility for singing at Trinity and publications include a set of books of Musical Theatre repertoire with colleague John Gardyne, choosing songs and writing teaching notes for two new sets of graded song books and recently, compiling two books of diploma songs. In 2016 she was awarded an Hon TCL.
She is also a highly experienced adjudicator member of the British & International Federation of Festivals.
Secondary Choral Day
Adult Choral Day
Anne grew up in a musical family on the Isle of Wight, where she was conducting her first choir at the age of 14. She graduated in music from Liverpool University, where she studied piano, viola with Robert Braga (RLPO) and singing with Doreen Wedgwood, achieving the LRAM diploma in 1982.
Anne has combined a busy teaching career as a full-time Director of Music in U.K. Schools with performing as a soloist and choral singer as well as pursuing her passion for writing and arranging music. She has recently enjoyed developing new piano pieces for grades 1-3 and some of her arrangements are published in ABRSM’s series ‘Piano Mix’.
She has over 30 years teaching experience in schools in Cheshire, London, Cambridgeshire and the East Midlands and is currently teaching A level music at Cheltenham Ladies’ College.
Anne has worked with choral singers of all ages, conducted many types of ensembles and directed musicals. She has been a team leader for GCSE music and an A level composition examiner with the OCR exam board.
Anne is an adjudicator member of the British Federation of Music Festivals and is enjoying a busy freelance career. Her ABRSM examining work (grades, jazz and diplomas) has led her far and wide in the UK and internationally