Monday, 26 May 2008


The Cairn Quartet are holding a showcase on the 23rd June at The Busby Hotel, Glasgow, 7pm! Come and chat with us, meet the members of the quartet and ask advice about music. We will be playing a selection of music from our playlist, please let us know prior to the event if you have any requests and we will play them for you!

Meet the musicians!

Fiona McLachlan (cello)
Sales and Events Manager

Fiona McLachlan was born and brought up in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, and began playing the cello at the age of 8. At 16 she was offered a place at the RSAMD Junior School, where she studied with Tim Paxton. While there she was awarded the Wolfson Scholarship, and was principal cellist of both the Chamber and Symphony Orchestras.
In 2003 she gained a place at the RSAMD, where she is currently in her Honours Year studying with David Watkin, principal cellist of SCO. She also receives regular lessons with Johannes Goretzki, and has had masterclasses with William Conway, Robert Cohen and Emma Ferrand amongst others. As well as regularly performing with the RSAMD Symphony, Chamber and Opera Orchestras, she has appeared numerous times with the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland. Fiona has also performed as soloist at the International Summer School in Debrecen, Hungary, and at the International Summer School in El Escorial, Spain, where she studied with Kate Price. As well as performing, Fiona also enjoys teaching and co-ordinating community music projects throughout Scotland, as well as performing, recording and writing parts for numerous bands and solo artists.

Annemarie McGahon (viola)
Sales and Events Manager

Irish born and bred, Annemarie began studying viola at the age of 17 with Elizabeth Csibi at the Royal Irish Academy of Music Junior School. Awarded an Irish Permanent High Achievers Award and numerous Feiseanna prizes, Annemarie continued her studies at the RSAMD in Glagsow unter the tutalage of Lev Atlas, principal viola Scottish Opera, and Andrew Berridge, co-principal of BBCSSO. Currently in her Honours year, Annemarie has performed in many masterclasses, including Robert Ireland, Gareth Knox and Barbara Westphal. Annemarie is a keen chamber musician, involved with various ensemble, and is in regular demand from RSAMD's Symphony, Chamber and Opera Orchestras. She recently performed with Scottish Opera and their Apprenticeship Scheme. Annemarie teaches violin and viola with RSAMD Youthworks and the High School of Dundee. She perfroms regularly with bands and solo artists, composing string parts for recording and performing, playing both violin and viola.

Other musicians!

Liam Lynch

Liam Eoin Lynch was born in Dunfermline and studied at the Junior Department of the RSAMD with Lise Aferiat before continuing his studies there with Tamas Fejes, graduating with first class honours in 2006. At the RSAMD Liam led the Academy Symphony and Chamber Orchestras, the modern music ensemble "Academy Now", won the Dunbar-Gerber, Iain D Watt and Mary D Adams prizes and competitions for chamber music, the Eric Dodds Brown Scholarship for outstanding senior violinist, the Wolfson Scholarship, the Bessie Spence concerto prize and the Viola Challenge competition. As concerto soloist he recently performed both the world premiere of John De Simone's Violin Concerto to critical acclaim and Brahms' Double Concerto for violin and cello with the RSAMD Symphony Orchestra. Most recently he has performed Bach's concerto for two violins with fellow quartet member Stewart Webster and the Fife Festival Orchestra and in July will be performing Mozart’s D Major Concerto with the Crail Festival Orchestra.
Liam is a founding member of the Alba Quartet, a young vibrant Scottish-based ensemble founded in 2003. The Quartet was awarded the inaugural Enterprise Music Scotland residency project which has led to regular tours throughout the country and the commissioning of David Fennessey's "bow your head", which will receive its premiere at the 2008 S-O-U-N-D Festival. They have received critical acclaim for their performances of Mendelssohn's Octet with the Edinburgh and Fejes Quartets, look forward to future collaborations with other leading chamber musicians and have performed at the St Magnus, Paxton House, Brechin and Balquhidder music festivals . The Quartet also enjoys education work and has held highly successful events in Fife and at St Andrews University. Forthcoming engagements include the EMS residency project tour of Scotland, their London debut and a tour of China.
Further afield he has given recitals of both Scottish traditional and classical violin music in Scotland, Ireland, England, Germany, Romania, Hungary and New York. Currently Liam is living in Perth and combining his chamber music career with the post of Head of Strings at Kilgraston School and freelance work with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

Emily Carr (Violin)
Emily Carr was first educated at the City of Edinburgh Music School studying the violin with Susan Emslie and the piano with Gillian Gray. In 2002 she went on to study the violin with Raymond Sidebottom at Leeds College of Music (LCM) graduating with a BA(Hons)Music Studies in 2005. While in Leeds she led the LCM symphony and chamber orchestras and was an active performer with a variety of classical and folk ensembles. In Leeds she received various awards including the Marjorie Ziff concerto prize in 2003 and 2005 and the Rotary scholarship in 2004.
In 2005 Emily began the Postgraduate Diploma (Performance) course at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (RSAMD), graduating in July 2006. She then continued her studies with Peter Lissauer at the RSAMD on the MMus. Course graduating in July 2007. During her time at the RSAMD Emily was an active orchestral performer and led both the RSAMD Opera School Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra. Also, Emily has participated in masterclasses with Maya Homburger and Ilya Gringolts and taken part in the Scottish Opera Apprenticeship scheme.
Emily is now enjoying a freelance career, combining teaching, both privately and in various music centres and schools and playing in an assortment of ensembles around Scotland including the Nevis String Quartet.

Elspeth Luke (Violin)
Elspeth Luke studied at Napier University where she learned violin andviola with Philip Burrin, and also with Nikolai Fadajev when she took partin an exchange to Tampere Konservatorio, Finland. She graduated in 2003 andwas awarded the class medal for her outstanding effort to her studies. Shewent on to gain a Post-Graduate diploma from the Royal Scottish Academy ofMusic and Drama in 2005. Whilst at the Academy she studied violin with TonyMoffat and Peter Lissauer and was principal 2nd for the Academy's Symphonyand Opera Orchestras. She also took part in masterclasses with RuthWaterman, Suzanne Stanzeleit and Rosie Warren-Green. Elspeth has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in venues such asThe Queens hall, Falkirk Town Hall, and the Edinburgh Society of Musicians.She has performed at Paxton House as part of their Summer Music Festival andalso in the Cantilena festival held annually on Islay. Elspeth particularlyenjoys orchestral playing and has performed around the UK as well asEstonia, Germany, The Netherlands, Spain and the Czech Republic. In 2003she performed in the BBC Proms with the National Youth Orchestra ofScotland. Since graduating from the RSAMD she has enjoyed a combination ofteaching and playing. She now plays with a variety of freelance ensemblesincluding The Orchestra of Scottish Opera and also teaches in schools andfor RSAMD Youthworks.

Ian Watson (Violin)

George Smith (Violin)

Ronan MacManus (Violin)

Jo Wylie (Violin)

Helena Flint (Viola)
Helena Flint, 25, graduated from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music &Drama, having studied with Lev Atlas, in July 2006 with a Masters in violaperformance. Helena has rehearsed with the RSNO, performed in ensembleswith BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra violists during the 2005 PrimroseFestival, and she has performed with Scottish Opera. Helena teaches theviola and piano and performs in different venues throughout Scotland andEngland as part of a string quartet.

Emma Peebles (Viola)

Fiona Ritchie (Cello)
Fiona Ritchie was born in 1984 in Aberdeen and began playing cello at theage of seven. She was accepted to study on the BMus course at the RSAMD in2002 at the age of 17 and graduated with honours in 2006. While at the RSAMDshe studied with Myra Chahin, Rudi de Groote and Donald Gillan as well asparticipating in masterclasses with several renowned cellists including PaulWatkins, Philip de Groote and Emma Ferrand. Since graduating she has beenteaching for East Renfrewshire Council and teaching privately as well asfreelance playing.

Emily Walker (Cello)

Western House Hotel Wedding

On May 25th we played for the wedidng ceremony and drinks reception of Hazel and Joe at Western House Hotel, Ayr. Hazel had actually only booked us the week before the wedding, but with her help we managed to get everything organised pronto and the day was fantastic. The ceremony was being held outside, and enjoyed the views of a lovely water feature and Ayr Racecourse. Although it was a really sunny day, it was incredibly windy and we didn't have any clothes pegs with us so it was quite amusing watching us trying to keep our music down! Definately learnt our lesson for the next outdoor wedding! For Hazel walking down the ailse we played the traditional wedding march by Wagner, then for the signing of register we played Gabriel's Oboe (which we played twice through), and the couple walked out to The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba. We then moved onto the bandstand to play for the drinks reception, and the couple had chosen a list of songs from out playlist. All the songs were modern and pop songs, and it was a really good fun afternoon!

On this occassion we were playing with Emma Peebles, a postgraduate student from RSAMD, as Annemarie was at her niece's christening in Ireland.

Glenskirlie House Hotel Wedding

On May 24th we were playing for the wedding drinks reception of Douglas and Jacquline. We had met the couple while exhibiting at The Scottish Wedding Show in Ingelston in Febuary this year. They had provided us with a great wide and varied playlist, and there was really something for everyone on it.

Glenskirlie Castle is increasingly becoming one of our most popular venues. However, this was the first time this year we had played in the hotel, which has recently been redecorated. It now looks stylish and classy, and we were all blown away by the transformation it has undergone. It was a spectacularly sunny day, so while we were waiting on the guests arriving we enjoyed some of the sunshine in the beautiful gardens, as you can see from the pics!

On this occassion we were playing with Ian Watson, a Masters student at the RSAMD, and Jo Wylie, a graduate from RSAMD.

Seamill Hydro Wedding

On May 23rd we were playing again at Seamill Hydro in West Kilbride. We were playing for the wedding ceremony of Susan and Chris, and it was held in the Arran Room of the hotel, which looked out onto the beach and the Isle of Arran. Myself and James were playing with Catherine Robertson and Helena Flint, both graduates of the RSAMD, as Alan was on holiday and Annemarie was doing her degree recital!
For Susan walking up the ailse we played Pachelbel's Canon, for the signing of the register Air on a G String and The Secret Wedding from Braveheart, and for the couple's exit we played All You Need is Love by The Beatles (like in 'Love Actually').

Pollokshields Burgh Hall Wedding

On May 11th we played for the ceremony and drinks reception of Laura and Geoff at Pollokshields Burgh Hall, after meeting Laura and her mum at The Royal Concert Hall Wedding Show. This was our first ever wedding at Pollokshields Burgh Hall, and it turned out to be a great venue, with friendly and helpfull staff and beautiful ceremony room looking out onto the park. We were playing again with Ronan MacManus, and for Laura walking down the ailse we played Can't Help Falling in Love, followed by Salut D'Amour for the signing of the register and Arrival of the Queen of Sheba for the couple's exit. They had also chosen a selection of songs from our playlist to play during the wedidng reception, mostly popular and modern songs, and these went down a storm with the guests.

When we met Laura at the wedidng show, she had also been looking for a ceilidh band. We were able to help her out as Alan also plays in a great ceilidh band. After the quartet finished playing, Alan stayed at the venue, where he was provided with dinner, and then began playing with his ceilidh band at around 7.30pm.

Laura and Geoff were a lovely couple, and both themselves and their families and guests were so nice and friendly we had a lovely time!

Seamill Hydro Wedding

On May 10th we played for a wedding ceremony at Seamill Hydro Hotel, West Kilbride. The hotel is set in a beautiful location looking out to sea, and we always try and keep a lookout for seals! On this occassion, myself and Annemarie had the pleasure of playing with George Smith and Ronan MacManus, both collegues of ours from the RSAMD in Glasgow.

Dalmeny Park Hotel Wedding

On May 4th we played for Sheila and Brian's wedding ceremony and drinks reception at Dalmeny Park Hotel, Barrhead. The couple had hoped for an outdoor ceremony in the beautiful gardens that the hotel host, but unfortunately the forecast for storms meant it was held in the room looking onto the gardens. We played a selection of classics for the ceremony, and had been asked to play a number of Irish jigs for the drinks reception due a number of Irish attending the wedding!

Brig O' Doon Wedding

On May 2nd we played for a drinks reception at Brig O' Doon House Hotel. It was a lovely sunny day so we played outside in the bandstand while guests sipped champagne and enjoyed the scenery! Still one of our favourite venues, the beautiful location, scenery and friendly staff make this a perfect venue in both winter and summer.