Joanna Nicholson, Director

“virtuoso”  Sound Festival website, October 2011 

“enthralling”  The Herald, June ’11 

"quicksilver"  The Herald, August ’08

"superb"  The Scotsman, August ‘07

Clarinettist Joanna Nicholson graduated from the Royal College of Music in 1992 as an Exhibition Scholar, and has since pursued a lively freelance career based in Scotland as a performer and educator. 

She performs extensively with numerous major UK orchestras and ensembles, most regularly the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, and Scottish Chamber Orchestra,    as well as the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Ulster Orchestra, Red Note Ensemble and Daniel’s Beard.  As a concerto soloist, she has performed with the BBC SSO at London’s Albert Hall's famous Proms concerts, and with the BT Scottish Ensemble.  She regularly gives solo and chamber music concerts in classical style as well as contemporary, folk and world influenced music.

Joanna has worked on music and arts education projects since 1990, with major organisations including the London Sinfonietta, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, several Scottish local councils, the BBC, Pied Piper, Capability Scotland and Live Music Now. More recently she has been working with Jessie’s Fund and Drake Music, organisations that provide music activities for people with special needs.

In addition to her musical story scores and various compositions for use in schools, Joanna has written and performed incidental music for several plays and promotional videos.   She co-created the score for "In Situ", the contemporary dance work written for the opening of Scotland's new national centre for dance, Dancebase.  The piece was awarded a Herald Angel at the Edinburgh International Fringe Festival.

More recently she has been part of Aberdeenshire Council's Kodaly Music Instructor team, and co-authored the Course of Study document for Kodaly delivery in Aberdeenshire primary schools.  She is a Trainer and Early Years Music and Story Specialist for Bookbug (the pre-school arm of Scottish Booktrust).

These days she is a mentor for young Live Music Now! players,  and has been a guest examiner for the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and Napier University.

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