Ieva Dubova, pianist

Who or what inspired you to take up the piano and pursue a career in music? My grandmother is a pianist and piano professor and growing up with her as a child there was always Piano played at home. I really loved it, to me it seemed magical and so amazing. In the same time…

Adrian Brendle, pianist

Who or what inspired you to take up the piano, and pursue a career in music? When my older sister began having piano lessons I almost naturally went to the piano as well and tried to play the tunes I knew. So my parents sent me to have lessons as well. Of course it was…

David Lancaster, composer

… true to yourself and become the composer you need to be rather than the composer that you think you ought to be. Write to please yourself – never others – and be your own harshest critic, making sure that your critical reflection drives you forward. And work hard – you can’t rely on favours or lucky breaks because ultimately there is only you who can take full control of your composing.

Huw Wiggin, saxophonist

One of my greatest challenges is to not compromise yourself as a musician artistically as it’s easy to fall in to a trap of always playing the music that people want to hear. I think that’s easy to do at the early part of your career but I reached a point where I said to myself, ‘why did you become a musician?’ and it was to not just play music which people are used to hearing but also to make people think a little. If it’s a new sound or interpretation, as the saxophone played in a classical way is then the artistic process is quite different to something that you are used to hearing and arouses an emotion or feeling which you weren’t sure was there.

James Erber, composer

Who or what inspired you to take up composing, and pursue a career in music? I began writing music during my first year at my secondary school, William Ellis School in North London, and received help from three of the teachers there. I showed my early compositional efforts to the school’s Head of Music, Douglas…

Frank Horvat, composer & pianist

Only pursue a life as a professional musician if you truly love making and/or playing music. When I was young, I tried to quit…many times. The only reason why I didn’t is because I couldn’t think of anything else to do that would make me happier. I guess that’s a good litmus test to see if it’s worth the effort.