Andy Rogers – Principal
Andy Rogers is a versatile music leader with more than 20 years’ experience working with children, young people and community groups in Buckinghamshire. As a conductor, Andy has led ensembles to award-winning performances at the National Festival of Music for Youth and the National Concert Band Festival. He has written more than 150 works for orchestras, bands and choirs and graced the concert programmes of the London Symphony Orchestra, RAF Central Band and Firebird Ensemble as well as numerous local ensembles. His suite for solo instruments ‘Switch on to Jazz’ can still be found in the dustier corners of a few remote music shops around the world. Away from music, Andy’s perfect day would be geocaching with his wife and two children before coming off the bench to score a last-minute winner for Wycombe Wanderers in the FA Cup Final.
Sally Stafford – Vice Principal
Sally has been inspiring young people to make music in High Wycombe for almost 30 years. After graduating from Royal Holloway College University of London and the London Institute of Education, she became Head of Music at Burnham Grammar School. As Advisory Music Teacher for Buckinghamshire she wrote “Sound Activities”, a book designed to encourage and facilitate non specialists in Primary classrooms. In 1990 Sally became Director of Music at Dame Alice Owen’s School, Hertfordshire, conducting the school’s Symphony Orchestra in the finals for the National Festival of Music for Youth. Returning to Burnham Grammar School, Sally became Assistant Head of Mathematics in 2004. She was appointed Lead Primary Maths teacher at Wycombe High School in 2006, working on outreach to enrich mathematics in Primary Schools, and then became an Assistant Headteacher for Bledlow Ridge Primary School in 2011. Sally is very much enjoying her role as Vice Principal at the Chiltern Music Academy, conducting the Symphony and Junior Orchestras.
Jean Ashford – piano
Jean is an experienced and popular local teacher. She teaches piano in schools and at home, to all ages and at all levels. She also plays oboe and recently started the cello. She has been helping guide young people through Grade 5 theory for twenty years. Just say, “Oh, I get it!” and you will make her day!
Sue Beach – woodwind
Sue graduated from the Royal Academy of Music GRSM (Hons) and LRAM, having studied Bassoon, Clarinet and Piano. Qualifying as a teacher at the Institute of Education she has taught secondary music in Berkshire schools for 32 years and just recently taken early retirement from full time teaching. At Cox Green School, Sue coached and arranged music for a variety of choirs and ensembles as well as directing many Musical Productions. Happily she has now become an experienced saxophonist too – had to do something at all those Jazz Orchestra gigs!
Guy Button – low brass
Guy is an experienced and well respected brass teacher and ensemble leader. His engaging personal style and ability to draw out the best in all students means that he is ideally suited to tutoring and directing beginners and advanced players alike.
Anna Cooper – Early Years/ recorder
Anna really enjoys making music of all sorts, and is passionate about sharing this with young children. An oboist and recorder player, Anna studied music at Birmingham University before spending three years travelling and working in Southern Africa and central America. On returning to the UK, she trained as a primary school teacher and has worked in schools across Bucks for the past 18 years both as a class teacher and music specialist. Away from music, Anna enjoys long walks and bike rides, and watching and playing all kinds of sport with her family.
Sheila Cornall – piano/composition
In 2011 Sheila was named Classic FM Secondary School Music Teacher of the Year in recognition of her amazing dedication to offering every possible musical opportunity to the girls she taught at Wycombe High School. “Never a dull moment” is a good description of life with the multi–talented Mrs C.!
Paul Craggs – percussion
Paul is an experienced percussion teacher and performer who has taught locally in the Buckinghamshire area for over 30 years. As a professional musician in Royal Air Force Music Services, he has performed in many of the world’s top concert halls and arenas, including those in America, Canada, Japan, India and Australia. With the RAF he has performed alongside the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Philharmonia, BBC Concert Orchestra, and the Halle and has toured extensively throughout the UK and Europe. During his professional career he has recorded numerous CDs, performed live on Radio3 and Classic FM, and appeared on a number of television broadcasts. Highlights include performances with Cliff Richard, Roy Castle, Evelyn Glennie, Michael Ball, Joe McElderry and Pixie Lott, as well as conducting a Percussion Ensemble in the Royal Albert Hall.
John Davie – clarinet
John trained at the Royal Air Force School of Music and served as a clarinettist in the Central Band of the RAF and as an Instructor in the RAF School of Music. He was a founder member of the High Wycombe Music Centre and, during his thirty years’ service, was involved in setting up five wind bands, four of which are ‘still alive and kicking’. In recognition of “his distinctive contribution to the local community over many years and his work in the development of youth music locally” John was awarded an Honorary Master of Arts degree by Buckinghamshire New University in 2004. After thirty years of continuous service as a Music Leader within the church, the Salvation Army awarded him a ‘Certificate of Service’ in 2014.
Simon Davie – trumpet/jazz
Simon studied trumpet at Guildhall School of Music & Drama with Crispian Steele-Perkins, one of our patrons. His contribution as a brass and piano teacher is significantly respected in the region and he is currently working in a number of schools in the High Wycombe, Marlow and Maidenhead areas.
Bob Evans – horn/brass
Born in South Wales, Bob is passionate about music and rugby. He studied at New College, Oxford University gaining MA and M Phil degrees whilst studying both modern and natural horn with Anthony Halstead and gaining his ARCM diploma in Horn performance. He has played with, amongst others, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Halle orchestra, in the West End and with all of the period instrument orchestras including the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, English Concert, London Classical Players, Hanover Band, English Baroque Soloists and the English Concert. He teaches at (amongst others) Eton College, Dragon School and the Centre for Young Musicians in London.
Jeremy Foster – oboe
Jeremy has played with some of this country’s most renowned orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, and in Europe with the Oslo Philharmonic and the RTE Symphony and Concert Orchestras. He has taught the Oboe, as well as Clarinet, Saxophone and Flute, in Buckinghamshire for 15 years. Jeremy plays in several chamber ensembles, and much experience in tutoring young people in this field. He has a legendary sense of humour!
Claire Haynes – harp/recorder
Claire studied Harp at Birmingham Conservatoire and the Norwegian Academy of Music. She has played extensively with orchestras and ensembles across the UK and abroad. Highlights of her career to date have been playing a Concerto with the Crendon Chamber Orchestra, playing with the RTE Symphony Orchestra and playing in live orchestral broadcasts for the BBC and NRK radio stations. When Claire isn’t playing her harp you will find her out in the garden tending to her vegetable patch!
Martin Hellewell – horn/brass
Martin had a successful career with the Royal Air Force Music Services as a French Horn player and also gained his LRSM in conducting. In recent years he has pursued a further career as a peripatetic brass teacher and if you fancy a little more action during lessons he is also qualified to teach you to drive!
Julie-Marie James – clarinet
Natasha Jashari – violin/viola
Natasha studied the viola at the Royal College of Music where she was the recipient of the viola prize. She has enjoyed a varied freelance career as an orchestral musician having played under the baton of Petrenko, Haitink, Norrington and Jurowski. As a soloist and chamber musician, she has performed at the Wigmore Hall as part of the RCM’s ‘Rising Star’ concert series. Natasha is currently Director of Music at Chesham Grammar School.
Alex King – recorder
Alex is a firm believer in the importance of recorder ensemble playing for the development of serious chamber music skills and musicianship. She tutors and develops recorder ensembles at local primary and secondary schools on a voluntary basis, enabling young musicians of all backgrounds to explore ensemble playing. Having said that, her approach is anything but serious, and the CMA recorder ensemble has been described as “mega-fun!”
Kate Laughton – violin/viola
Kate learnt the violin from Vivienne Price (founder of the National Children’s Orchestra), Marguerite Bucknall, Ralph Holmes, Miranda Dale and Hege Aldren. She is still learning. Her career combines music and education including work with British Youth Opera, Tower Hamlet’s String Project, Barnet Music Service, The Spitalfields Festival, The Cheltenham Festival, English National Opera and Garsington Opera. Running through her career is a determination to inspire music and participation for all at every possible level. Her experience combines both project management and hands-on projects and this comes together at CMA where she loves to work in particular with music leaders and students to help keep string playing alive and kicking.
Jonathan Lewin – percussion
Jonathan is a freelance performer and teacher of percussion, with many years experience. He has created and published tutor books in support of his extensive peripatetic teaching work, and arranges music for percussion ensemble. Jonathan’s usual performing home is behind the drum kit or timpani in a symphonic wind band or orchestra. However, he relishes the huge variety of music that involves percussion, and has played in theatre pits, rock bands, afro-cuban drumming groups, samba bands and more. At CMA, Jonathan teaches drums and percussion, and directs the Percussion Pioneers, which is the more junior of our percussion ensembles.
Caroline Maguire, Double Bass
While a student at the Royal Academy of Music, Caroline appeared on a BBC TV Master Class with the great American Bassist, Gary Karr, and after graduating she played with the Halle Orchestra, The English Chamber Orchestra, the Bournemouth Sinfonietta and Glyndebourne Opera. In recent years she has appeared at music festivals in Aldeburgh, Edinburgh, Cheltenham, Gottingen, Vienna and Jerusalem. Caroline is particularly in demand as a specialist in Period Performance. She was principle Bass with the Hanover Band for many years and has recently appeared at the Proms and performed Bach in Dresden with the English Concert. After studying the Mini Bass teaching method, she has developed a special interest in teaching very young children on eighth-size instruments. Caroline has been the Double-Bass teacher at Haberdashers Askes’ School in Elstree since 1993.
Natasha Marsh – vocal
Natasha Marsh trained as an opera singer and has sung in many critically acclaimed performances across Europe. Her first album ‘Amour’ (EMI) topped the classical charts. She sings with major orchestras including the LSO, Royal Philharmonic and the Halle and with artists such as Jose Carreras, Russell Watson, Il Divo, and Paul Potts. Natasha is passionate about helping children find their voice and her vocal coaching work includes the National Youth Music Theatre, Oxford School of Drama and BBC Songs of Praise. She has 3 little boys who keep her very busy!
Francis Mullaly – clarinet/saxophone
Francis studied at the Belfast School of Music and Durham University where he was presented with ‘full colours’ for an exceptional contribution to the Arts and the ‘Durham Award’, recognising outstanding university, extra-curricular and community achievements. Having previously taught at the Royal Grammar School, Newcastle, Francis is the current Assistant Director of Music at the Royal Grammar School High Wycombe. He conducts Great Missenden Orchestra and enjoys directing jazz ensembles and choral singing. His other big passion is in theatre, having been a director, musical director, actor, reviewer, sub-editor and instrumentalist in over twenty-five productions, including Chicago, Sweeney Todd, Sweet Charity, Cabaret, The Crucible and West Side Story. Outside the Arts, Francis has unwavering interests in three areas: dogs, travelling and football (in particular the prestigious Irish Premiership!)
Anne-Marie Munoz – flute/piano
Anne-Marie is an enthusiastic and experienced music teacher who has been teaching in Secondary schools both in the UK and abroad for 16 years. She loves working with young people and has enjoyed directing them in a variety of ensembles including wind bands, choirs, samba bands and orchestras. Some of her most exciting experiences in schools include creating Singing festivals, band nights, arts festivals, and conducting the musicals Seussical, Chicago and Bugsy Malone. When she is not involved in music she loves spending time with her family and dancing.
Tom Noyes – vocal
Margot Rusmanis – violin
One of the most sought after string teachers in Buckinghamshire, Margot certainly gets results. She likes to open the lid and let the musician out. Her passion for different genres is infectious- she led the string section for the original TV series of Come Dancing and has backed The Moody Blues, Diana Ross, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Michael Ball, Bruce Forsythe and Rod Stewart. Margot directs the String Orchestra and Senior String Chamber Music at CMA.
Simon Salisbury – flute
Simon Salisbury studied flute at the Royal College of Music with Douglas Whittaker and Sebastian Bell. He later completed a PGCE at London University and entered the teaching profession. After many years working for the Berkshire Young Musicians Trust (Berkshire Maestros) he moved to Buckinghamshire in 2003 as Head of the High Wycombe Music Centre. He was subsequently appointed Head of the Buckinghamshire Music Service, a role he held until his retirement in 2013. Throughout his career, Simon has maintained a love of teaching and playing the flute and really looks forward to getting up ridiculously early on Saturday morning to meet his pupils at CMA!
Justine Stringer – violin
Justine joined RAF Music Services in 1992 as a violinist in the Salon Orchestra: a 7 piece ensemble providing music support for Royal, State and Military occasions. Career highlights include performing a duet with her husband Barry at the Royal Albert Hall for a Classic FM live Concert, being part of a Tri Service Orchestra for the Queen’s 90th Birthday where she performed with Shirley Bassey, Kylie Minogue, Gary Barlow, James Blunt and Beverley Knight, and also 2 performances with Brian May which were completely epic! Justine set up a Service Children’s Choir that performed at ‘Silence in the Square’ in Trafalgar Square on 11.11.11, sang at the Dominion Theatre for West End Heroes, and also sang at the Royal Albert Hall for the Festival of Remembrance, with a song written specially for them by the Principal Director of Music, Duncan Stubbs. For the RAF Centenary in 2018, she set a target of performing with the Salon Orchestra to every Primary School in the Borough of Hillingdon, this project is still ongoing.
Barry Stringer MBE – violin
Barry is an experienced musician who has performed as a violinist the RAF for over 33 years. During his long career, his primary role being to perform for the Royal Family, he has been a soloist in all the major concert halls in the UK and abroad. Featuring on many recordings with the RAF bands, most notably as leader of the Salon Orchestra on the chart topping CD (Reach for the Sky) with Central Band, a career highlight was performing the Ashokan Farewell at the Royal Festival Hall in 2002, and then again several years later for classic FM Live with the Royal Northern Sinfonia at the Royal Albert Hall. He has performed alongside celebrities such as Alfie Boe, Russell Watson, Hayley Westenra, Michael Ball, Pixie Lott and the legendry Queen guitarist Brian May.
Barry was the manager of the Central Band in the centenary year of the RAF and, on retiring from the RAF after 33 years, he had the privilege of becoming one of the 37 Yeoman Warders of her Majesty’s Tower of London.
Paul Speed – trumpet
Paul is a freelance trumpet player, teacher and conductor. Paul teaches at RGS and Wellington College as well as conducting Trinity Concert Band in Reading. Paul also enjoy’s running though unlike his name, not particularly fast.
Helen Turnbull – oboe
Helen is a vibrant and enthusiastic musician with a flair for teaching who needs to know when to say “No”!. Her youthful demeanour which exhausts everyone who works with her belies her years of experience from playing with professional orchestras to directing youth ensembles, with equal passion. She is dynamic and fun and ridiculously silly, children and young adults respond to her enthusiastic approach with incredulity and the music they produce is outstanding. One day all oboists will be made this way.
Kate Venvell – vocal
An experienced primary music specialist, Kate is well-known locally for her dynamic and enthusiastic leadership of children’s choirs in High Wycombe, appearing several times with them in the National Festival. Kate is the brains behind CMA’s Big Noise and Sing Perform Inspire workshops.
Tim Venvell – vocal/composition
Tim has been Director of Music at RGS High Wycombe since 1994. He directs all the large- scale instrumental and choral ensembles, regularly appearing with them at the National Festival. His passion for choral singing has led him to set up and direct a number of choirs. His RGS close harmony choir “Singers Limited” won Youth Choir of the year and performed on the television; they also represented the UK in a European competition in Munich.
Ellie Walton- violin/viola
Ellie currently studies Viola and Baroque Viola at the Royal Academy of Music with Martin Outram (of the Maggini Quartet). Her recent orchestral experience includes principal viola of the Royal Academy Opera orchestra and of the Baroque Orchestra in the RAM Kohn Bach Cantata series. She was also previously the principal viola of the Junior Guildhall Symphony and String orchestras as well as a String leader in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. She has enjoyed playing in masterclasses with Lawrence Power, Hartmut Rohde, Mate Szucs and Tatjana Mazurenko . Ellie has begun her level 1 Suzuki Teacher training and is keen to inspire her pupils to learn both as much as they can and to love making music- in the same way she has been inspired by so many musicians.
Mary Walton- cello
Mary is an experienced, qualified Suzuki teacher who particularly enjoys leading cello groups and string ensembles. Her cellos include 1/16 sizes for her 3-year old pupils, viola da gambas, 18th century baroque and 5-string cellos for more advanced players, and her ‘modern’ cello (made in 1690!), so she could be described as rather keen on the cello!
Sarah Whibley- bassoon
Sarah studied at the Royal Northern College of Music, University of Manchester and Musikhochschule Freiburg, Germany. She held the position of sub-principal bassoon with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra for ten years, followed by three years with Glyndebourne Touring Opera Orchestra. She continues to work as a freelance bassoonist and has played with London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony, BBC Symphony and BBC Concert Orchestras, RTE Symphony Orchestra, London Mozart Players, European Union Chamber Orchestra and Orchestra of the Swan, as well as various chamber groups including Fusion Wind Quintet. Sarah has years of experience teaching bassoon, from beginner mini-bassoonists to music college and university level, previously holding posts as bassoon tutor at the Royal Northern College of Music Junior Department and at the University of Liverpool. She is a passionate advocate of the bassoon and committed to inspiring new generations of bassoonists.
Andrew Wright (Oz)- acoustic/electric guitar
Oz is an experienced Guitar player who specialises in Electric and contemporary styles. He teaches guitar classes privately, at CMA and in several local schools. As well as teaching, Oz plays regularly with several bands as well as working as a music producer.
Charlotte Yeoman – violin/viola/piano/vocal
Charlotte is a MA student in Vocal Studies and Opera at the Royal Academy of Music having completed her Bachelor of Music degree at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. As well as solo recitals Charlotte’s notable engagements include concerts at the Royal Albert Hall, Barbican Concert Hall, Birmingham Symphony Hall and National Theatre as well as performances and recordings with artists such as The Rolling Stones (O2 Arena, Wembley Arena), Duran Duran, Il Divo, Katherine Jenkins OBE and Gareth Malone OBE. Charlotte began studying the violin at 3 years old, the piano at 5 and the viola at 9 giving her a wide and in depth knowledge of different teaching practices such as the Suzuki method and Kodaly. Charlotte has been running a successful private teaching practice from her home for ten years offering tuition in violin, viola, piano, singing and music theory and is delighted to be a member of the team at CMA. She has vast teaching experience and enjoys learning new approaches to technique and musicianship that she can pass on to her students. In her spare time Charlotte enjoys learning new instruments, she has recently taken her ABRSM Grade 2 flute exam and is working towards her ABRSM Grade 1 cello.