Julia Wilson - Leader
Julia was born and bred in Yorkshire and attended Chetham's School of Music in Manchester. At the age of 18 she was awarded a scholarship to the Royal Northern College of Music to study violin with Eli Goren. She went on to postgraduate study at Nice Conservatoire, France to learn with one of Oistrakh's pupils, Danielle Artur, (who she describes as terrifying!). After being awarded Premier Prix for Violin, she joined the BBC Philharmonic in Manchester, the youngest member, at the age of 22.
She spent 15 happy years at her beloved BBC Phil recording CDs, performing in concerts and getting through an encyclopaedia of repertoire every week, noting that in this period she finally learnt to sight read! She also taught violin at Manchester University and became BBC Philharmonic's Orchestral Mentor, training postgraduate students at the RNCM in orchestral technique – her top tip is always offer to buy the tea at the first rehearsal. She went back to University to take a Master's degree in Performance and also became a member of the Degani String Quartet which were featured in Young Composer's Competition on TV’s BBC 2, many moons ago.
In 2001 Julia met her husband, Malcolm, who is an orchestral manager in London, and she made the move “down south”. The London freelance scene kept her busy, playing with English Chamber Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, English National Opera and Philharmonia orchestras. During her career, she has also been invited to the Ulster Orchestra as guest leader and guest principal second violin for the Hallé and BBC Concert Orchestras. Teaching posts have taken her to the London College of Music and Hampton School and currently she teaches at Danes Hill School in Oxshott and Tiffin Girl's School in Kingston.
Malcolm and Julia have two sons, Alasdair and Cameron, who are carrying on the family musical tradition. They both attend the Junior Guildhall School of Music on a Saturday; Alasdair studies composition, piano and cello and Cameron is a horn player and pianist. They live in leafy Surrey with their beloved spaniel, Louie and a cat called Guiseppe Verdi, who terrifies the dog.
Julian Martin - Principal Violin II
Julian joined the orchestra for the 1993/4 season shortly after moving to Hampshire from the West Midlands. This was in keeping with his resolve to enjoy music-making as a hobby whenever possible and orchestral playing has been very much part of the various chapters in his life, from the county youth ensembles in Hereford and Worcestershire through to York's University and Guildhall Orchestras plus various pit, light and reheasal orchestras along the way.
Having been invited to lead the second violin section whilst the orchestra was still performing at the RAE Assembly Halls, he has had the privilege of working with many like-minded violinists over the seasons to build and maintain a strong sectional identity with those who appreciate delivering the depth and musical colour that composers inject into their writing for "the seconds".
Music provides a welcome contrast and balance to Julian's engineering-based career in the mobile communications business world and there is plenty of music to come home to with a family whose singing and (brass) instrumental pursuits avoid any risk of a quiet life.
Elizabeth Winters - Principal Viola
Elizabeth Winters studied viola, piano and recorder at the Royal College of Music Junior Department and subsequently continued her viola studies on the undergraduate course. However, an injury to her left hand led her to focus on composition. After gaining her MMus in Composition with Distinction from Goldsmiths’ College, she studied with Judith Bingham and Kenneth Hesketh. She has also worked with Julian Anderson, John Casken (Lake District Summer Music Composer Residency) and Colin Matthews, Michael Gandolfi and Oliver Knussen (Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme).
Elizabeth has since established herself in the UK as one of the leading composers of the younger generation. Her music is regularly performed throughout the UK, has been released on CD and several works have been broadcast on BBC Radio 3. Elizabeth won a British Composer Award (2009, Making Music Category) for her orchestral piece The Serious Side of Madness. Other competition successes include first prizes in the Liverpool Capital of Culture New Composer Competition (2008) and the Orion Orchestra Composer Competition (2015).
After a 15-year break, Elizabeth is enjoying returning to the viola and rediscovering what it’s like to play music rather than just write it! She is married to the FSO Principal Clarinet, Nathan Winters, and they have a son, Edward, born in March 2015. As well as trying to find the time to compose with a toddler on the loose, Elizabeth also teaches piano, viola, recorder, theory and composition.
For more information visit www.elizabethwinters.com
Robin Chave - Principal Cello
Robin began learning the cello at the age of 7. He won a Music Scholarship to Hampton School when he was 11 and in his final year at school he performed the Elgar Cello Concerto in the end-of-year concert. Torn between science and music, he decided upon an engineering degree at the University of Birmingham, but continued having cello lessons at the Birmingham Conservatoire.
He spent 6 years at Birmingham, studying for a BEng degree and then a PhD in Materials Science. During this time he played in a number of university orchestras and ensembles, and became involved in the University’s Contemporary Music Festival.
Robin joined the Farnborough Symphony Orchestra in 1998, becoming principal cello a few years later. Between 2000 and 2002 he took cello lessons again with Christopher Bunting, the internationally renowned teacher and performer who was himself a pupil of the great Pablo Casals. Robin enjoys playing chamber music whenever the opportunity arises.
David Barnes - Principal Double Bass
David has been playing double bass for many years having progressed from clarinet while at secondary school. In 1979 David toured Australia with the Hampshire County Youth Orchestra, playing in Melbourne, in Canberra for the Governor General, and as part of the first British orchestra to play in Sydney Opera House. He has played with the FSO on and off since 1977.
David plays around the country with an orchestra based at All Souls Church in Central London, with the Hampshire Sinfonia and a number of local ensembles.
The clarinet is a much easier instrument to carry.
Vivian Barber - Principal Flute
Vivian attended the Royal College of Music, studying the flute under the direction of Alexa Turpin, before taking a degree in Music and French at Keele University. During this time, she was a soloist at the Royal Festival Hall and then spent a year in Paris where she studied at the Conservatoire , before joining the Farnborough Symphony Orchestra on her return.
Until taking a career break to raise three children, she was a full-time teacher and invested considerable energy in directing a range of school productions such as Godspell, Oklahoma and Jesus Christ Superstar. During this period, she was also a peripatetic flute teacher and tutored the Surrey Youth Orchestra.
She has had a varied musical career, playing in several ensembles, singing and playing keyboards in bands, performing in amateur dramatics as well as directing musical shows. She now makes the occasional professional appearance playing the flute and spends time chaperoning in the West End, where her eldest son, Daniel, has performed roles such as Tiny Tim in Scrooge, Michael Banks in Mary Poppins, Gavroche in Les Miserables and is currently appearing with Rowan Atkinson in Oliver.
Barry Collisson - Principal Oboe
Barry joined the band of the 3rd Battalion the Parachute Regiment as a junior musician at the of 15. In 1964 he became a member of the staff band of the Royal Army Ordnance Corps based in Deepcut. During his army career he toured in Europe and the Far East and played in many BBC radio broadcasts. Whilst in the army he studied the oboe with Derek Wickens, Principal Oboist with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
After leaving the army in 1976 he continued his musical career as a freelance musician, playing the oboe and cor anglais for various shows and grand opera productions in the south east of England. Barry is also a founder member of the local Pelly Concert Orchestra and has been with the FSO since the 1970s.
Nathan Winters - Principal Clarinet
Nathan Winters first started learning the clarinet when introduced to it by his primary school headmaster. Throughout high school he had lessons with David Campbell and then joined the Purcell school as a sixth former. Between 1999 and 2003 he attended the Royal College of Music (RCM) as a Foundation Scholar. At the RCM he studied with Janet Hilton, Tim Lines, Michael Collins and Emma Johnson.
Nathan has performed at numerous venues throughout the UK including Buckingham Palace, St. James’ Piccadilly, and St Pancras Church. Since graduating from the RCM, he has worked in the IT industry! He now works for Microsoft, managing a team across EMEA and Asia. Since 2012 Nathan has had three Microsoft technical books published by Sybex and has spoken at leading IT conferences across the UK, Europe and the USA.
Having moved out of London to Camberley in 2013, Nathan has re-kindled his musical activities. He has played multiple times as guest principal clarinet with the Surrey Mozart Players and is a member of the Blackwater Valley Wind Quintet. On the rare occasions when he is not working, he enjoys wildlife photography and squash. You can view his photography at www.nathanwintersphotography.com.
Paula Burton - Principal Bassoon
Paula started playing the flute at the age of twelve and two years later took up the bassoon. She went on to take both instruments as joint first study at Trinity College of Music, London, studying bassoon with Roger Hellyer and Vernon Elliott and flute with Ann Cherry. After graduating from college, she pursued a career as an instrumental teacher both in schools and privately at home, initially in the West London area and now in Surrey and Hampshire. After a break to raise her two sons, she resumed this career. Her elder son Thomas writes the programme notes for the Farnborough Symphony Orchestra concerts.
Paula has been a member of the Farnborough Symphony Orchestra for twenty years. She also plays principal bassoon for the Pelly Concert Orchestra and plays regularly in a Wind Quintet who perform for weddings, garden fetes and charity events. She also plays for local operatic societies and is a member of a bassoon quartet. With the small amount of spare time these activities leave her, she enjoys walking and is a keen gardener.
Alison Wyld - Principal Horn
Having graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Alison pursued a career as a freelance horn player for thirteen years. During this time she played with a variety of orchestras and ensembles including the Bournemouth Sinfonietta, the London Mozart Players, the BBC Concert Orchestra, the Orchestra of English National Ballet and the contemporary music group Lontano. Alison was also a regular member of London’s West End theatre orchestras, playing in shows such as Miss Saigon, Singin’ in the Rain, Kiss Me Kate, Phantom of the Opera and Starlight Express.
In 1998, Alison decided that she wanted a new challenge and moved into primary school teaching. She is currently the Headteacher at All Saints Church of England Junior School in Fleet where, amongst other things, she runs the school orchestra and oversees a busy programme of performing arts opportunities for the children.
Alison is married with two teenaged children and when she is not working or playing the horn, she likes to follow football and is a season ticket holder at Aldershot Town!
Roy Falshaw - Principal Trumpet
Roy Falshaw was born in 1957. After taking up the cornet he played with a number of brass bands in the area of his Manchester home, and also the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain. In 1973 he joined the Army as a Junior Musician in the Grenadier Guards. After serving with the bands in the Aldershot and Camberley area, in 1986 he attended the Bandmaster’s Course at the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall. Graduating in 1989, he was appointed Bandmaster of The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards. With this regiment, in the 1st Gulf War of 1991, he served in a medical role in Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Kuwait.
Retiring from the regular Army in 1997, Roy became the Director of Instrumental Music at Danes Hill School, Oxshott. In the same year he continued his connections with military music when commissioned into the Territorial Army and appointed Director of Music of the Band of The Royal Yeomanry. In addition, Roy works as a freelance trumpeter.
Chris Cosens - Principal Tuba
Chris received his early musical instruction on the euphonium at the Salvation Army in Salisbury. At 14 he was invited to join the local championship brass band and was fortunate to compete at both the prestigious British Open Brass Band Championships at Belle Vue in Manchester and the famous National Championships at the Royal Albert Hall. After military service with the Band of the Welsh Guards where he took part in all of the London ceremonial occasions, Chris returned to a career in engineering.
Taking up the Tuba soon after leaving the army, Chris has played in various brass and concert bands, joining the Farnborough Symphony Orchestra in 2004. As well as the FSO, Chris is principal tuba of the Band of the Royal Yeomanry and enjoys freelance tuba playing especially with brass quintets and 10 piece ensembles. Chris is also a recent student of the Double Bass, and is looking forward to the day when it begins to sound a little more like a musical instrument!