Lasham Festival Players
Josh Hall Oboe & Artistic Director
Ria Nolan Double Bass
Eva Richards Cello
Jody Smith Violin
Rebecca Stubbs Viola
Megan Thompson Violin
Stephanie Yim Clarinet
Josh Hall is a freelance oboist based in Liverpool having graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music under the tutelage of Jonathan Small & Jenny Galloway. He previously studied at Birmingham Conservatoire with George Caird, Jenni Phillips & Richard Weigall. He has worked with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Hallé Orchestra, Orchestra of Opera North & Kaleidoscope Orchestra amongst others, and has appeared as Guest Principal with the Ulster Orchestra. Whilst studying he was accepted onto schemes with both the Hallé Orchestra and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra where he also performed as Principal Oboe with the CBSO Youth Orchestra & Academy.
As a soloist, Josh has performed Strauss’s Oboe Concerto with the Wirral Symphony Orchestra, Finzi’s Interlude for Oboe & Strings as part of the Fondazione Cantiere in Montepuliciano with the RNCM String Orchestra.
During his studies Josh has participated in a number of masterclasses with international artists including Francois Leleux, Jonathan Kelly, Alexei Ogrintchouk & Nicholas Daniel. He has also attended masterclasses in Klausen, Italy with Nick Deutsch & David Walter.
Alongside performing Josh has a real passion for chamber music and is currently Artistic Director for the Lasham Music Festival in Hampshire.
Originally from Dublin, Ria began playing the Double Bass at the age of 11, studying at DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. She later completed both her undergraduate and masters degrees at the Royal Northern College of Music a scholar. Ria’s teachers at the RNCM included Roberto Carillo Garcia, Max Zeugner and Jiri Hudec, and she has participated in masterclasses with Bozo Paradzik, Joel Quarrington and Leon Bosch amongst others.
Ria is a committed chamber musician, and has collaborated with many ensembles and festivals, which has given her the opportunity to perform some of the greatest chamber music pieces involving the double bass. During her studies she very much enjoyed enjoyed playing in several double bass ensembles, and received tuition from musicians including Dr. Hugh Maguire, Peter Cropper, Roger Hamilton and Dora Schwarzberg.
As an orchestral player, Ria works with ensembles including BBC Concert Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, The Hallé and Manchester Camerata, She is a former member of Southbank Sinfonia, a chamber orchestra made up of the most promising young musicians from around the world and during her training was also part of the Britten Pears Young Artist Programme. She has performed with conductors including Marin Alsop, Elim Chan, Sir Mark Elder, Kurt Masur and Gábor Takáca-Nagy.
Ria is also a passionate educator, and has be involved in projects with East London Music Group, Project Instrumental, RNCM Young Strings and Southbank Sinfonia. In addition to this she has held several teaching positions and is currently completing a PGCE in Group Instrumental Teaching.
Jody Smith is a freelance violinist based in Birmingham. After graduating with a First Class Honours degree from the Royal Northern College of Music, she has enjoyed performing across the UK and beyond with various ensembles, including the Manchester Camerata and Manchester Collective during their 2022 Winter Residency in Wales. As a soloist, Jody has performed in venues including Symphony Hall, Brangwyn Hall and Birmingham Town Hall, and during her time at the RNCM she won the Cowen Prize for Violin and the Norman George Violin Scholarship Competition.
Together with her friend and colleague Louisa Till, Jody is a member of the Amica Duo. They compose, arrange and perform a wide variety of music from folk to old Hollywood musicals, and particularly enjoy sharing their music in care homes around the UK. This year, Jody joined the Farrenc Quartet as their 1st violinist and has enjoyed giving recitals performing works by Beethoven and Mendelssohn.
Jody always cherishes being a part of the Lasham Classical Music Festival and is honoured to be involved in this years performances.
This player has kindly been sponsored by Hampshire Cheese Co.
Eva Richards graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music in 2018, where she studied with Nicholas Trygstad. In 2020 she completed her MA in Cello Performance with Anthony Arnone at the University of Iowa, where she also taught cello and coached chamber music.
She is currently continuing her postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music with Felix Schmidt. As a soloist, Eva has recently performed concertos with the Laganside Sinfonia and the Ulster Orchestra in the final of the Flax Trust Music Awards, for which she was award the Audience Prize. She has also performed in the Irish Heritage Awards in the Wigmore Hall. A passionate interpreter of new music, Eva has premiered works in Manchester, Iowa, and the Midwest Composers’ Symposium in Cincinnati and commissioned several works for the instrument.
Eva works regularly with Ireland’s National Symphony Orchestra, and has also worked with the Ulster Orchestra and the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra in Iowa. She has given masterclasses and performances in Iowa and at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, University of Mississippi and Queen’s University Belfast. Eva teaches privately and with the Irish Chamber Orchestra’s Sing Out With Strings initiative.
Rebecca is a freelance violist based in West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester. She holds a Master of Music from the Royal Northern College of Music, where she recently completed her studies with Vicci Wardman and Alex Mitchell. Prior to this, Rebecca was an undergraduate student at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire under the tuition of Louise Lansdown, Robin Ireland and Lucy Nolan.
A passionate orchestral player, Rebecca has performed with orchestras across the UK including the London Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Hallé and Manchester Camerata. She has also worked on recording projects with the Northern Film Orchestra and Manchester Video Game Orchestra, and West End shows and radio broadcasts with the London Musical Theatre Orchestra.
Rebecca is a member of several chamber projects in and around the north west. She is the violist of the Meliora Collective, a wind and string dectet and flexi-ensemble which regularly collaborates with soloists and composers on new commissions and exciting arrangements of lesser known repertoire. Rebecca plays regularly with the Lindow Ensemble, a string ensemble comprising leading orchestral experts and senior and alumni RNCM students. She has been the principal viola of the Orchestra of the Light Music Society since it reformed in 2021.
Rebecca has taught extensively as a private viola and violin tutor. Between 2016 and 2019 she was chamber music coach and conductor of junior ensembles at Sandwell Music and Arts Service, West Bromwich. During her undergraduate degree, she mentored for the ARCO project, a long-distance learning initiative between the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and young musicians from the Morris Isaacson Centre for Music in Soweto. Rebecca currently teaches violin and viola and leads musicianship workshops at Hanson Community Arts in Marsden.
Megan Thompson is a freelance violinist and strings teacher based in Liverpool. Megan completed her undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at the Royal Northern College of Music under the tutelage of Steven Wilkie. An active freelance violinist and session musician, Megan works and performs regularly with ensembles such as Yorkshire Symphony Orchestra, Manchester Concert Orchestra, Skipton Camerata and Docklands Sinfonia as well as performing as the solo violinist for the Carpenters Story UK Tour and the Illegal Eagles.
Megan has had the opportunity to work with ensembles conducted by Vasily Petrenko, Sir Mark Elder, Jac Van Steen, En Shao & Anthony Hermus. Megan has worked as principal second violin in projects with leading violinists James Clarke and Pavel Fischer and has performed in side-by-side projects with the Hallé Orchestra and Manchester Camerata. She has also participated in masterclasses with artists such as Yossi Zivoni, Henk Guittart & Verokia Eberle.
Alongside performing, Megan is an active educator and is passionate about beginner strings pedagogy and completed a PGCEi in Instrumental Teaching with the Music Masters programme at Birmingham City University. She is a lead musician and teacher on the Liverpool Philharmonic In Harmony programme and is an upper string tutor on the RNCM Young Strings programme.
Megan plays on a Hendrik Jacobs violin made in 1690.
Stephanie Yim began her musical studies at Chetham’s School of Music before studying at the Royal Northern College of Music in 2013. Stephanie has also completed an Erasmus semester at the Kunst Universität in Graz, Austria and a year of study at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst, Frankfurt. In July 2020, she graduated from the Guildhall School of Music Orchestral Artistry Masters Programme with distinction supported by Help Musicians UK, Countess of Munster Trust and a Guildhall scholarship.
Stephanie has participated in several high profile masterclasses with Martin Fröst, Andreas Ottensamer, Michael Collins and the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet. In 2017, Stephanie toured as an academy member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe to Germany and the BBC Proms and as principal clarinet of the RNCM Symphony Orchestra at the 42nd Cantiere Internazionale D’arte, Montepulciano. She has worked with the Hallé Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, Ulster Orchestra and rehearsed with the London Symphony Orchestra as part of the OA programme. Stephanie is currently an extra player for the Chineke! Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, Hallé Orchestra and was part of the Chipping Campden Festival Orchestra Academy in September 2021. Outside of orchestral work, she works as staff for the National Children’s Orchestra of Great Britain and co-founded a flexible dectet, the Meliora Collective.